Excerpts from Worry Less Now!

Would You Like to Overcome Negative Thinking?

If you are anything like me, your mind’s default setting seems to be the “worry and fear channel.”

Are you worrying about relationship difficulties, family issues, excessive eating, overworking, ongoing pain, illness, financial woes, addictions, or damaging anger? Perhaps you want to escape from your stressful thoughts about the future or past disappointments.

Or you might be seeking freedom from depression, a general sense of discontent, or a lack of purpose. Up until now, you may have been trying to change these damaging patterns, but you’ve gotten the same old frustrating results.

The good news is that you don’t have to be a prisoner of your fears and worries, no matter what is going on. Here you’ll learn how to overcome negative thinking by using Four Life Strategies: Get Honest, Claim Power, Make Choices, and Use Growth Practices. You’ll also experiment with over 40 tools to dispel your doubts and burdens.

As a result of using this system, you will be able to:

  • walk through life’s most difficult challenges with trust and hope;
  • have peace of mind and gratitude for your life, even during troubling times;
  • fulfill your dreams in the most amazing ways;
  • enjoy relationships that blossom and thrive; and
  • serve others in their personal growth.

What’s pleasantly surprising is that to receive these outcomes, you don’t have to use the Four Strategies and tools perfectly. Nor do you need to use all of them. You merely need to exert a consistent, honest attempt to apply the ones that appeal to you.

I wrote this book to share what I’ve learned from my training in psychology, as well as over thirty years of applying tools from recovery programs, cognitive therapy, energy work, and a variety of spiritual and scientific teachings. I have condensed my insights into the Four Strategies to overcome worry, fear, and negative thinking. I also offer you over 40 concrete tools to find peace of mind and guidance during your troubling situations.

Will It Work?

Backed by a variety of research studies and my own and others’ growth, I can tell you with confidence that Four Strategies and other tools will free you from the tyranny of worry and fear.

My Story

Although my story happens to include substance abuse, any number of difficulties can be conquered through the 4 Strategies and 40 tools offered in this book. Here’s a story of where my healing began.

By the time I was 36, I had become a prisoner of fear and worry. I had a new doctorate in educational psychology from Stanford University, and I had secured a university position in Michigan. Yet I was more miserable than I’d ever been in my life.

One afternoon, I walked into my favorite tavern and sat at the bar. As I contemplated my face through the bottles lined along the mirror, I wondered, “How could I have gotten to this place again? I’ve done this too many times, with too many men.”

It didn’t matter that my third husband was at home waiting for me. I didn’t care that I would be driving home in a drunken stupor. I only knew that I would stay there until the pain was dulled—until the beer, sex, and drugs had driven it away.

Shafts of sunlight pierced the blinds just as they had at my favorite bar back at Stanford. Eventually, a couple of guys in business suits came in and sat near me. I thought one of them was rather attractive, so I struck up a conversation. During the next hour, we chatted and ordered a few more drinks.

When our talk escalated into flirtation, I called home and fed my husband a story about being out with some of my students. A few hours after that, I called and said that I wouldn’t be home until quite late. Then I left with the guy I’d picked up. We went to buy drugs, and then drove to his home and had sex. Only through good fortune did I make it home safely at 2:00 a.m. I covered up my misadventures with even more lies the next morning.

After that episode, I decided that I needed help and went to a therapist. After a few sessions, his approach was not helping me at all. I did, however, receive one gift when I asked his secretary to help me find a new route to my office. As I followed her directions, I drove along a winding oak-bowered road and approached a placid river. Suddenly, something deep inside me said, “I’d love to live near a place just like this.”

Now, many years later (and after considerable work on myself), I now find myself living in an old farmhouse along that same tree-lined road overlooking that same river. I am happily married to my fourth husband. I am at peace and can honestly say that I love my life.

How to Overcome Worry

How did I get from that miserable person staring at those bottles in that cozy bar to the person I am now? I can’t say it’s been easy. Yet, it’s been deceptively simple. The secret? I’ve learned to overcome the negative thinking—what I call “whispered lies”–that cause my most devastating worries and fears.
Sitting in that bar, I was imprisoned by whispered lies such as, “I blew it again; I’m a bad person” and “If only my husband would change, I could be happy.” Such lies clogged my mind with blame, guilt, worry, and resentment. Even worse, they kept me from discovering and expressing my best self. It’s no wonder I was so unhappy.

This book teaches you how to use the Four Strategies to overcome your own whispered lies, fears, and worries. Since I’m a highly practical person, I’ve tried to make the ideas as clear and simple as possible. Because some of you prefer to learn through stories, I’ve included tales of my own and others’ challenges and victories over them.

Finally, I’ve included several guided exercises to help you apply the suggested tools to your own worries. I suggest that you buy a journal or binder to use for the exercises and other notes you wish to keep. Tool 5 in Chapter 2 provides guidelines for various styles of journal entries.

My Hope For You

I sincerely wish that you overcome your own worries so you can be happy, relaxed, and fulfill your dreams. That, even during your troubling times, you can find peace, wisdom, and appropriate actions. Finally, I hope your victories will inspire others to overcome their own whispered lies and negative thinking.

As you read this book, I encourage you to try out the tools that appeal to you and take note of the ones you might try in the future. I would love to hear how you’re applying the ideas in this book to overcome the challenges in your own life. Finally, please contact me with any questions you might have.

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