I remember reading somewhere that only 40% of what we worry about actually comes to pass. As a matter of fact, click HERE to read a well-meaning and otherwise useful blogpost which cites a whole range of statistics. I offer this caveat: 73% of statistics you read online are made up on the spot … and this goes double for those that end in a zero
My perception is that, in the Worrying Lottery, some folks win and some folks lose.
When your worry results in positive or preventive action regarding a real threat or concern, you win.
When your worry results in sleepless nights, restless days, and a great deal of waiting for some type of lightning to strike, you lose.
The Divine Caroline blog has a great list which compares the statistical probability of a great range of things. My personal favorite:
Odds of successfully climbing Mount Everest: 1 in 3
Odds of getting divorced: 1 in 3
So I have the same chance of climbing the highest mountain in the world as being divorced? While some of you are probably already planning your trip over to the Roof of the World, since the odds appear so good, stop and think about this.
The comparison is void, since the two groups (people attempting to climb Mount Everest and people who attempt to stay married) are not comparable. Here are three specific differences, off the top of my head:
The difference in physical conditioning and psychological preparation is vast. Except for celebrity weddings, mountain climbers are and need to be in much better shape than your average married guy and gal.
The motivational levels relate to two distinctly different events: one intense and much more time-limited, the other hopefully less intense and more long-term.
Attributes which give one strength, such as focus and determination, are employed differently in the two situations. If you focus on climbing a mountain, your personal relationships are on a back burner; if you are trying to stay married, your personal relationship will be paramount.
Practice critically analyzing these type of things by going to the above link and pick any set of comparisons. Think about the context and create your own list of incomparable comparisons. This is easy and can be sort of fun.
.IMPORTANT: Now apply what you have learned to your everyday life
I am an old man and I have known a great many troubles, but most of them never happened. ~ Mark Twain
I always like to imbue my worrying with some level of thoughtful analysis and includes statistics whenever possible. I’m 57% sure that this makes my thoughts more powerful.
Worrying about how this one will be received in the Heartland ….