What are you nervous about? How do you deal with your anxiety? We often try to fight these feelings, but ironically this may lead to more tension. Living in the fear-based world that the media continues to encourage makes it nearly impossible for many not to feel alarm and even panic about their health.

Society’s messages are simple. You’re never safe enough, attractive enough, and not nearly rich enough. Hey, I’m almost a millionaire. I have all the zeros. Now I just need the one. So how can you not torture and torment yourself incessantly? Listen, I get nervous if I don’t get nervous for the things that I thought I would be nervous about.

Keeping track of all of your followers, by the way? Heck, Facebook is proof that you’re never too old to have imaginary friends.

It all begins in your mind. Your thoughts may be fooling you, sweet friends. Do not believe everything you think. If you can solve your problems, why fret? Focus on the solution. If this problem cannot be solved, will fear and fussing ease your apprehension and angst? Bring yourself to the present moment as much as possible.

Planning is constructive. Worrying is simply a way of reviewing unrealistic scenarios in your mind. A great deal of what you agonize over will not even come to pass. Not knowing the future creates uncertainty, which we humans do not like at all. Thinking ahead can help you take necessary measures to make concrete plans. However, making predictions and imagining possible negative outcomes serves no useful purpose whatsoever.

Are you in the “here and now” now? What can you do right now? Goals may seem impossible to reach if we keep sabotaging our efforts by weighing ourselves down with apprehension and annoyance.

The hallmark ark of chronic handwringers is that they are obsessed with certain results. You desperately want to be liked, so you worry about social interactions. You are fearful about losing your job, so you become a bundle of nerves at work. Hey, my boss told me to start every presentation with a joke. The first slide was my paycheck. But truly, the future will always be unsure and uncertain, my friends.

Do we know how things will turn out ultimately? Maybe losing that job created a ripple effect, which had an unanticipated positive outcome in the end. As much as we would love to increase pleasure in our lives, suffering is often the earmark that a necessary change is happening.

Life is simply inseparable from instability. Forget the current obsession with “positive thinking,” sweet friends. Yes, believe in yourself, but know that the world may not align with your beliefs. And you know what they say: People will accept your ideas more easily if you tell them that Benjamin Franklin said it first.

Of course, we are not anti-happiness. Who would be? If you focus way too much on being cheerful all the time, you may very well become less so. Your expectations will no doubt incur disappointment. It’s been said: Don’t be distracted by criticism. Remember, the only taste of success some people get is to take a bite out of you.

Things don’t seem to be going as planned? Sometimes we simply need to say “yes” to what is. Trying to resist unchangeable things causes unnecessary suffering. Indeed, we think we know how things “should” be, but how often are they? What is the narrative in your head when things do not work out in the way you anticipated?

Trust me, when your back is against the wall, you will become more resourceful than you realize. Stay optimistic, my friends. You can’t download resilience on your phone, but you can certainly develop it from within. I know. You love your phone, until someone calls you on it. Well, I was going to clean my house…but then someone commented on my status. But sincerely, start by not replaying old tapes of bad memories in your head.

What is up to you and what is not up to you? Everything in life offers you the opportunity to respond however you choose. Which values do you lead with when you are hurt, disappointed, or angered? Are you virtuous despite the unfairness? Are you kind when others around you are not?

We are given many opportunities to practice righteousness and respectability, but oftentimes we simply view things as obstacles that cannot be gracefully overcome. Organize your life in a way that is compatible with your values, sweet friends. You are defined by what you do. Please remember that.

Cultivate healthy rituals. Engage in certain behaviors in a disciplined manner. Exercise regularly. Have that heavenly morning cup of coffee. You might want to stay back when my “Low Coffee” light is blinking. But sincerely, through practice and training you can enhance and perfect the way you act in the world.

Keep the faith. Is faith your steering wheel or your spare tire? Remember that you are a diamond in the rough. Don’t focus on who you “are.” Focus on what you can become.

Caroline is a licensed psychotherapist, crisis counselor, and writer with an office in Queens.  She works with individuals, couples, and families.  Appointments are available throughout the week and weekends.  She can be reached at 917-717-1775 or at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or at facebook.com/pages/Safe-Haven-Healing.