I was pruning my rose bushes when a thorn got stuck in the end of my index finger. I managed to break off the larger part above the skin, but the tiny point was imbedded deep down and wouldn't budge.
I worried that thing to death the rest of the day! I tried everything. Tweezers, a safety pin, a sewing needle... even the old duct tape trick. Nothing worked. To make matters worse, I realized all my efforts were only pushing the tip down deeper. By the time I went to bed, my finger was so sore I could barely touch it.
The next morning, I stumbled to the bathroom to brush my teeth, and I remembered the thorn. I looked down. It was gone! Sometime during the night, my body had pushed it out on its own, with no help from me.
I think there's a valuable lesson to be learned from this. So many times, we fret and stress over the "thorns" in our lives. We won't let some trivial matter go, or we obsess over something that hasn't even happened yet, or worry too much about what others think. It's mentally exhausting. And in the end, most of the problems we thought were so big usually work themselves out on their own.
I'm making a conscious effort to choose my battles and stop stressing so much over the pesky thorns in my life. I'm a worrier by nature, so this kind of change doesn't come easy to me.
When we feel ourselves stressing out over something that deep down we know is trivial, ask yourself this question: "What's the worst-case scenario that could happen as a result of this situation?"
Someone might think less of us or not like us? Oh, well. You can't please everybody. Some chore or errand won't get done until tomorrow or the next day? So what? It'll still be there. A friend or co-worker might get angry because we say no to something we don't really want to do? True friends will understand.
Worrying robs us of joy. Don't let the inevitable thorns of life distract us from living our lives to the fullest!
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