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"We are the protagonists of our stories called life, and there is no limit to how high we can fly."

PHD. MBA. MHS. Type rated on A350, A330, B777, B747-400, B747-200, B757, B767, B737, B727. International Airline Pilot / Author / Speaker. Dedicated to giving the gift of wings to anyone following their dreams. Supporting Aviation Safety through training, writing, and inspiration. Fighting for Aviation Safety and Airline Employee Advocacy. Safety Culture and SMS change agent.

Monday, April 23, 2012

Monday Motivation: Worry

"Let me be taken away from my daily
worry and strife. So I may emerge
worry free with the capability to
create - all the solutions that I
wish for - or want."

~ by Eleesha, Inspirational Affirmations Author

We returned home from the hospital yesterday, and the previous month I've had so many people tell me not to worry, or say they know I'm worried, etc. I have a little secret: Despite the numerous challenges I've faced, I have actually I have never been worried. Exhausted, yes. Stressed, yes. Worried no. I've made a decision for my life to remove the worry from my mind.

Don't Worry Take Action

Worrying creates depression, causes health problems, and kills brain cells. Worry destroys the memory. Actually little bit of worry actually can help the memory, but only if it kicks you into gear to do what needs to be done. But too much worry will lead to anxiety, and anxiety reduces available working memory capacity. Too much anxiety… and depression sets in. And a depressed individual’s processing capacity, and lack of motivation, will contribute to inferior cognitive performance. Shall I go on with physical responses to worry? Ulcers, aging, heart problems, etc.

I learned how to remove worry when our middle daughter was in the hospital after she'd been paralyzed from back surgery, seven years ago. The doctors had said she may never walk again. When I left the hospital for my daily mental and shower break, I would receive calls from family crying and telling me Kayla would be okay. Meaning she would walk. But I always knew she would be okay, even if she didn't walk. Her life would just be different. I realized that was the key to my survival. Having faith that whatever happened was just going to be fine. It may be different than we'd planned, but it would fine if she survived.

How to survive the insurmountable
challenges of life:

Do what needs to be done in the moment, and have faith that everything else is going to happen like it is supposed to.

Exhaustion from not sleeping, and stress from dealing with the daily challenges will always be there. But when you can learn to focus on what needs to be done now, and not let your mind travel down the road of "what if," you can survive anything.

When you imagine the "what ifs" you feel the pain mentally, emotionally and eventually physically as if it has already happened. But what if, your what if doesn't happen? You've just experienced the pain that you've created in your mind for no reason. It wasn't reality and you got to live it.

For those of you who believe in the power of prayer, when you start thinking about the negative side of what might happen, in essence aren't you're sending those messages...prayers... out into the universe? Watch what you think about. Focus on what needs to be done.

If your mind is not focusing on worrying about what might happen, you have the power to deal with what is happening. Of course you should prepare and take appropriate action for what you have control over and can anticipate, but the key word is action. If there is nothing you can do but mentally fabricate the worst case scenario, then STOP thinking!

Life is What You Think About.

For all my pilot friends, stop worrying about your careers, or passing your tests...Just prepare.

Are you a worrier? If so, how is that working for you?

Enjoy The Journey!
XOX Karlene


  1. Great inspirational post with a personal touch and wishing all the best to you and your family!!!!!

    1. Thank you so much Srinivas. All the best to you and yours too.

  2. LOVE this post, Karlene. I'm extremely familiar with worry. My mom's a world-class worrier and sometimes when the right trigger sets me off I fall into that pit, just because I know so well how it works. But I spent a lifetime reacting to her worry by doing exactly what you recommend here, and as long as I can stop and take a breath and, as you say, THINK, I can change everything. It's all about attitude. Yours is fantastic! The timing of this post is perfect for me as I fly off for a long trip, thanks! p.s. hooray for Dick being home and the two of you recouping.

    1. Thank you Linda! I have a major worrier in my family too, about everything. Listening to it has really given me motivation to choose to be different.

      Do not worry about your trip...remember, part of the fun is the adventure not knowing.:)
      You're going to have a great time!

  3. Thanks for yet another great post, Karlene. I'm a firm believer in "the power of thought" - what you think/pray/say will affect you, whether you like it or not. So, let's keep those good thoughts coming. Life is too short to think about what "might" happen and all the "ifs" - focus and live in the moment. All we can do is just make sure we are equipped with the right "gear" - thoughts, actions and information, and we'll get through the most intense and hard challenges.

    1. Thank you Cecilie. The power of thought is so important, more so than many believe. Very powerful. Focus and live in the moment is the best way to live. Thanks for your comment.

  4. Thanks for a wonderful post. Making a copy to save in the files. Excellent advice from a wonderful lady.

    Definitely needed to hear some of this advice.

    Glad to hear things are going better. Warm wishes, hugs from Arizona! :)

    Denise (now a renewed ISA +21er)

    1. Thank you Denise! Yay... renewed ISA+21 member! I think we can all listen to this advice over and over again, as it never gets old or loses value. Thank you so much for the wonderful comment.

  5. Wonderful post and timely. I had actually spent a restless night wasting brain cells and energy with worry a few nights ago. The next day I dove into the issue and all the what ifs started to vanish.

    1. Todd, That's great you dove in and the what ifs vanished. Promise to not waste valuable sleep killing braincells ever again! Thank you for the great comment!

  6. Wonderful post, Karlene. I've preached this for years.

    BTW, just finished Flight for Control. Enjoyed it.


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