According to Victoria Stern in an article titled, "Why We Worry" in November/December's Scientific American Mind, not only does stress and worry do nothing to help us control our situation, but it can also make us LESS prepared for the worst case scenario.

Although it is our natural tendency to fret - or feel negative thoughts about a future event - too much of it can actually hinder cognitive processing, lead to cardiovascular issues and even (at its extreme) cause permanent damage to one's body. The article also points to an article that says a small amount of worry is actually good for one's performance, but that many people take it to an extreme that ceases to be beneficial and starts being detrimental.

And so it is with embracing the chaos and feeling the fear but doing it anyway and all of the advice we get when setting out on an adventure. It's human to feel frightened...to have worry pangs...but it is entrepreneurial to forge ahead with senses heightened, enjoying the ride. In fact, those days when I feel that familiar pang of 'this could all fall apart tomorrow' are the days that I feel most alive as an entrepreneur. It is what drives me to look further ahead, be more agile and definitely be smarter about the decisions I'm making today. But it is never daunting or immobilizing...or at least it isn't any more.

It wasn't always that way and I used to worry far more than I do now. I fretted to my own detriment. Not only was I mired in my own stress, but I was incapacitated to act in ways that would make a positive difference to my trajectory. It was as if I had the choice to steer out of harm's way or let go of the steering wheel and bury my face in my arms...and I would do the latter. The crash is inevitable when you spend more time worrying than doing something about your fate.

It's also allowed me to the see the long term more clearly. This was something I couldn't do when fretting. I saw today clearly and tomorrow was full of clouds. By seeing tomorrow clearly, I can prepare myself today (and sometimes make sacrifices necessary to make a brighter tomorrow).

And not fretting about tomorrow doesn't mean you ignore it completely, either. A healthy eye on the future combined with an open mind today is the right balance to strike. Keep your eye on the prize and enjoy the ride.

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