What if (fill in the blank)? As a counselor I hear it all the time. Dreading all the ways that relationships, jobs, and life can go wrong keeps people living not in the reality of today but in a mythological and scary world of a future “what if.”
When you are “what if” worrying and fretting, aren’t you missing your life today?
How much can you control the future? To be blunt, not much! You can control day to day choices, make decisions, and respond to what happens as it happens. You can plan for the future. But that’s it. You cannot control the future.
How do you stop this “what if” thinking? It is simple but not always easy. Develop the habit of living in the present.
Every moment has something you are missing by “what if” thinking. Stop right now, take a deep breath, and experience this moment: the view out a window, the sound of a loved one, a picture that brings a good memory, an item that someone gave you, the chair you are in that is comfortable, the smell and taste of your coffee or tea, or what can you laugh about now? What else do you see, hear, feel? This moment is real. So much of what goes on in your of “what if” isn’t real, is it?
Live your life in the real world now!