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QUIT YOUR WORRYING!
GEORGE WHARTON JAMES
“Living the Radiant Life,” “What the White Race may learn from
the Indian,” “The story of Scraggles,” “California, Romantic and
Beautiful,” “Our American Wonderlands,” etc. etc.
who are standing on the banks of worry before the ocean of God’s love
I cry aloud
“COME ON IN—THE WATER’S FINE!”
I THE CURSE OF WORRY
II OURS IS THE AGE OF WORRY
III NERVOUS PROSTRATION AND WORRY
IV HOLY WRIT, THE SAGES AND WORRY
V THE NEEDLESSNESS AND USELESSNESS OF WORRY
VI THE SELFISHNESS OF WORRY
VII CAUSES OF WORRY
VIII PROTEAN FORMS OF WORRY
IX HEALTH WORRIES
X THE WORRIES OF PARENTS
XI MARITAL WORRIES
XII THE WORRY OF THE SQUIRREL CAGE
XIII RELIGIOUS WORRIES AND WORRIERS
XIV AMBITION AND WORRY
XV ENVY AND WORRY
XVI DISCONTENT AND WORRY
XVII COWARDICE AND WORRY
XVIII WORRY ABOUT MANNERS AND SPEECH
XIX THE WORRIES OF JEALOUSY
XX THE WORRIES OF SUSPICION
XXI THE WORRIES OF IMPATIENCE
XXII THE WORRIES OF ANTICIPATION
XXIII HOW OUR WORRY AFFECTS OTHERS
XXIV WORRY VERSUS INDIFFERENCE
XXV WORRIES AND HOBBIES
JUST BE GLAD
BY JAMES WHITCOMB RILEY
O heart of mine, we shouldn’t worry so,
What we have missed of calm we couldn’t have, you know!
What we’ve met of stormy pain,
And of sorrow’s driving rain,
We can better meet again,
If it blow.
We have erred in that dark hour, we have known,
When the tear fell with the shower, all alone.
Were not shine and shower blent
As the gracious Master meant?
Let us temper our content
With His own.
For we know not every morrow
Can be sad;
So forgetting all the sorrow
We have had,
Let us fold away our fears,
And put by our foolish tears,
And through all the coming years,
Just be glad.
Between twenty and thirty years ago, I became involved in a series of
occurrences and conditions of so painful and distressing a character
that for over six months I was unable to sleep more than one or two
hours out of the twenty-four. In common parlance I was “worrying
myself to death,” when, mercifully, a total collapse of mind and body
came. My physicians used the polite euphemism of “cerebral congestion”
to describe my state which, in reality, was one of temporary insanity,
and it seemed almost hopeless that I should ever recover my health
and poise. For several months I hovered between life and death, and my
brain between reason and unreason.
In due time, however, both health and mental poise came back in
reasonable measure, and I asked myself what would be the result if I
returned to the condition of worry that culminated in the disaster.
This question and my endeavors at its solution led to the gaining of a
degree of philosophy which materially changed my attitude toward life.
Though some of the chief causes of my past worry were removed there
were still enough adverse and untoward circumstances surrounding me
to give me cause for worry, if I allowed myself to yield to it, so I
concluded that my mind must positively and absolutely be prohibited
from dwelling upon those things that seemed justification for worry.
And I determined to set before me the ideal of a life without worry.
How was it to be brought about?
At every fresh attack of the harassing demon I rebuked myself with the
stern command, “Quit your Worrying.” Little by little I succeeded
in obeying my own orders. A measurable degree of serenity has since
blessed my life. It has been no freer than other men’s lives from the
ordinary—and a few extraordinary—causes of worry, but I have learned
the lesson. I have Quit Worrying. To help others to attain the same
desirable and happy condition has been my aim in these pages.
It was with set purpose that I chose this title. I might have selected
“Don’t Worry.” But I knew that would fail to convey my principal
thought to the casual observer of the title. People will worry, they
do worry. What they want to know and need to learn is how to
quit worrying. This I have attempted herein to show, with the full
knowledge, however, that no one person’s recipe can infallibly be used
by any other person—so that, in reality, all I have tried to do is
to set forth the means I have followed to teach myself the delightful
lesson of serenity, of freedom from worry, and thereby to suggest
to receptive minds a way by which they may possibly attain the same
It was the learned and wise Dr. Johnson who wrote: