What to Worry About, and How

There are lots of books and articles about ‘how to worry less’, but when it comes to just plain ‘how to worry’, period, there isn’t that much – and what there is seems to be devoted to things like “worrying more productively”. If you want to learn how to worry in a completely unproductive manner, I’m afraid you’re out of luck. We really need someone to show us the way.

After all, there is so much you could worry about if you had the time and the talent. I mean, how can you know which of the many worryable things are truly worth your time and effort? Should you worry about whether North Korea apologizes for setting off a nuclear bomb or whether they do not apologize? How to know? Should you worry about floods, or worry about drought? Should you worry about money or worry about health? Should you worry about everything? If you worry about nothing, aren’t you worried that people will think you’re uncaring and insensitive?

There are so many things that might be worry-worthy! Should you worry about America “cutting and running” from one of its many failed wars, or only about Americans being perceived as the kind of people who might “cut and run”? What is the “cutting” part, anyway? I get the “running”. After all, he who fights and runs away lives to fight another day, but he who cuts … then what? Ouch? Should you worry about pain or about not enough pleasure? If you start worrying about what to worry about, it can become kind of worrisome.

That’s why I think we need a book called “What to Worry About, and How”. Worrying does not have to be productive. If it‘s even mildly useful, can it even be called “worrying”? Isn’t that what they call “thinking”? Worrying is more like useless fretting about things you’re actively doing nothing about. You maybe could do something about it, so it isn’t necessarily fussing about things beyond your control. You simply prefer not to do anything at all. 

I think it’s okay to worry but if you want to maybe you can go ahead and worry about whether it’s okay to worry or not. I don’t know. I haven’t read the book.


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