My last post outlined my recent trip to Haiti. You can read the entire writing at:  www.bruceblumer.com/endurance

The quick summary of my trip is that the capital of Port au Prince (PaP) is a mess. The center part of the city has police presence, but entirely surrounding the capital are multiple gangs controlling and expanding their areas. The gangs are involved in violence, kidnapping, and other nasty activities to raise funds and vie for control of their territory.

The only thing constant in my trips to Haiti is change. We had planned that I would fly into PaP, take a local plane to the south arm of Haiti, and then take a boat ride to LaGonave (a 40 x 10 mile island) where our ministry, Haiti Alive, is located.

But the plans changed to riding in a van with three heavily armed guards to a police station, then hopping in an armored vehicle with armed guards through a gang-controlled area to the port. The armed guards accompanied us in a small boat for the long, bumpy boat ride to LaGonave.

From the time my plane landed in Haiti to the time we finally arrived on our island and back home, I repeated to myself, “Don’t worry about what COULD happen, worry about what is happening.” Given the brief summary of my trip, I’m guessing you could imagine some of the things that could have gone wrong. There were many.

But most, if not all, of those things that we imagined were out of my control. Not worrying about what could happen, might also apply to us sitting in our comfy living rooms in the U.S., away from scary things and scarier people.

A study conducted by Penn State University found that about 8% of what we worry about actually comes true. That means 92% of what we worry about never happens. That’s a huge number.

That also means that we spend time, energy, effort, anxiety, and stomach aches over things that don’t happen over 90 percent of the time.

Let me say that there are legitimate things to worry about. There are also people who struggle with anxiety and depression, which makes it difficult to set things aside without assistance. I’m not ascribing to the “Don’t Worry, Be Happy” model for everything we encounter in our lives.

I remember as a young parent thinking, when my kids get out of the house, I can quit worrying about them. Hah. A woman once told me, “Small kids, small problems. Big kids, big problems.”
And, news flash, parenting worry doesn’t end when your kids reach 18 years of age.

The next time a worry comes up, ask yourself, is there anything I can do to change it?
Try to separate what could happen with what is happening or likely to happen.
Fill that space with 92% goodness.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *