Worry does not empty tomorrow of its sorrow.
It empties today of its strength.
—Corrie Ten Boom
Hold yourself to a five minute per day limit.
What that person did to you. What that camp has said or believed about you. How this or that place or people is failing you.
Five minutes. Think it over. Try to get to the bottom of it.
Pray it up. Try to eagle eye a solution.
Then cut yourself off.
Refuse to give any bad more than a few minutes of your time. You have not pledged allegiance to forces that harm you. You do not owe them your whole day. You do not owe them a good night’s sleep. You owe them nothing!
Do not allow those who seek to harm you or experiences that have weighed you down to take control of more than five minutes. Stake your personal flag, bearing the crest of Jesus, in the rest of your life and claim it for what you do live for.
Don’t give up that mental territory.
Take those thoughts captive.
Sure, there might be some guiding conversations that you have with mentors or loved ones that help you plunge the depths of your soul looking for wisdom or healing. But when you’ve said all you’ve had to say and heard out the voices you respect, then stop talking about it.
Don’t let ill will dominate more than five minutes of your conversation. Vent, self-express, but don’t indulge. Don’t go deep sea diving in the Mariana Trench of all that’s wrong.
Speak it out loud if necessary. Phew, I got that out of my system but I promised myself I wouldn’t give my energy to things that subtract from my life.
But hardship isn’t just inflicted by a person, you say. It’s the nature of life itself. It’s grief, it’s loss.
Yes, the world hurts and skews things so bad sometimes.
What does worrying more than that accomplish? If something is deep inside you so bad, if it’s scarred you and wrecked you, it’s probably outside your control. Is it not?
So if you had to choose between investing five minutes of your life that will accomplish nothing, and hours upon hours that will accomplish nothing, which do you choose?
For the good of all, if you insist on wasting more than five minutes of your time doing something that accomplishes nothing, then at least put the time into some sort of nothingness that’s enjoyable.
Stare off into the ocean, lose yourself in the blue sky, wander off in the planets. Breathe deeply.
Time is finite. It’s the one thing we all wish we had more of. It should be among the resources we steward most astutely.
It’s poor care taking to permit your mind and mouth to waste your time and energy. So again, we set our minds on things that are good, noble and of well report. Once more, we calibrate ourselves to good things.
For more of Sarah’s thoughts on staying sane while doing good, check out her newly released book The Well-Balanced World Changer.
[**And we get to give away TWO copies!** Share your thoughts in the comments and we'll enter your name into a draw for a copy of Sarah's book.]
Sarah Cunningham is an idea junkie who blogs about creativity and collaboration. In addition to writing books, she happily sinks her imagination into events and projects that attempt to stir extraordinary things in a sometimes too-ordinary world. In her latest book The Well-Balanced World Changer Sarah writes about how to stay sane while doing good.