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Are You a Worrier? Zig Ziglar on The Problem of Worrying

17 Sep

Therefore do not be anxious, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ For the Gentiles seek after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them all. But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.“Therefore do not be anxious about tomorrow, for tomorrow will be anxious for itself. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble” (Matthew 6:31-34, ESV). 

 Why Worry?

 Worry has been described as “interest paid on trouble before it comes due.”

One of America’s worst enemies is worry. Worry is like a rocking chair; it requires a lot of energy, and it gets you nowhere. Leo Buscaglia said, “Worry never robs tomorrow of its sorrow, it only saps today of its joy.”

 Question: Are you a Worrier?

Americans take more pills to forget more worries about more things than ever before and more than people in any other nation in history. That’s bad. According to Dr. Charles Mayo, “Worry affects the circulation and the whole nervous system. I’ve never know a man who died from overwork, but I’ve known many who have died from doubt.”

Mathematically speaking, it really doesn’t make sense to worry. Psychologists and other researchers tell us that roughly 40 percent of what we worry about will never happen and 30 percent has already happened. Additionally, 12 percent of our worries are over unfounded health concerns. Another 10 percent of our worries involve the daily miscellaneous fretting that accomplishes nothing. That leaves only 8 percent. Plainly speaking. Americans are worrying 92 percent of the time for no good reason, and if Dr. Mayo is right, it’s killing us.

One solution that will reduce your worry is this: Don’t worry about what you can’t change. Example: For a number of years I’ve flown in excess of two hundred thousand miles a year. On occasion, flights are canceled or delayed. As I write this, I’m sitting on the runway waiting for my gate to clear. If I worry or get angry, nothing will change. If I take constructive action and finish this chapter, I’m ahead of the game. That’s a positive way to use energy that I would have wasted on anger, frustration, or worrying.

The message is clear: If you don’t like your situation in life, don’t fret or worry—do something about it. Worry less, and act more.

 About Zig Ziglar:

Zig Ziglar was born in Coffee County, Alabama on November 26, 1926 and was the tenth of 12 children. In 1931, when Ziglar was five years old, his father took a management position at a Mississippi farm, and family moved to Yazoo City, Mississippi, where he spent his early childhood. In 1932, his father died of a stroke, and his younger sister died two days later.

Zigler served in the Navy during World War II (circa 1943-1945). He was in the Navy V-12 College Training Program, attending the University of South Carolina. In 1944 he met his wife Jean, in Jackson, Mississippi; he was 17 and she was 16. They married in late 1946.

Ziglar later worked as a salesman in a succession of companies. In 1968 he became the vice president and training director for the Automotive Performance company, moving to Dallas, Texas.

In 1970, Ziglar went into the business of motivational speaking full-time, with an emphasis on Christian values. Until then, he called himself by his given name, Hilary, but now satarted using his nickname, Zig, instead.

Until 2010 (aged 86) Ziglar traveled around the world taking part in motivational seminars, but has been somewhat limited recently due to a fall down a flight of stairs in 2007 that has impaired his short-term memory and physical abilities.

Through the ups and downs of life Ziglar has maintained his optimism and encouraged thousands of people to be their best in the particular endeavors to which God has called them. Zig Ziglar is one of the most inspirational people on the planet today and is a terrific example of someone who has embraced the struggle of life giving God the glory each step of the way.

The article above was adapted from one of Zig’s many encouraging books: Something to Smile About: Encouragement and Inspiration for Life’s UPS and DOWNS. Nashville: Thomas Nelson, 1997.

 Zig Ziglar’s Books:

  • Ziglar, Zig; Ziglar, Tom. Born to Win: Find Your Success Code. Dallas: SUCCESS Media (2012).
  • Something Else To Smile About: More Encouragement and Inspiration for Life’s Ups and Downs. Nashville: Thomas Nelson (2010).
  • Ziglar, Zig; Norman, Julie Ziglar. Embrace the Struggle: Living Life on Life’s Terms. New York: Howard Books (2009).
  • The One-Year Daily Insights with Zig Ziglar. Tyndale House Publishers (2009)
  • Inspiration 365 Days a Year with Zig Ziglar. SIM (2008)
  • God’s Way is Still the Best Way. Nashville: Thomas Nelson  (2007).
  • Better Than Good: Creating a Life You Can’t Wait to Live. Nashville: Thomas Nelson Publishers (2006).
  • Conversations with My Dog. B&H Books (2005).
  • The Autobiography of Zig Ziglar. New York: Random House (2004).
  • Confessions of a Grieving Christian. Nashville: B&H Publishing Group 2004).
  • Courtship After Marriage: Romance Can Last a Lifetime. Nashville: Thomas Nelson  (2004).
  • Staying Up, Up, Up in a Down, Down World. Nashville: Thomas Nelson  (2004).
  • Zig Ziglar’s Life Lifters: Moments of Inspiration for Living Life Better. B&H (2003).
  • Selling 101: What Every Successful Sales Professional Needs to Know. Nashville: Thomas Nelson Publishers (2003).
  • Ziglar, Zig and Hayes, John P. Network Marketing For Dummies. Foster City, Calif: IDG Books (2001).
  • Success for Dummies. Foster City, Calif: IDG Books (1998).
  • Something to Smile About: Encouragement and Inspiration for Life’s UPS and DOWNS. Nashville: Thomas Nelson (1997).
  • Great Quotes from Zig Ziglar. Career Press (1997)
  • Over the Top. Nashville: Thomas Nelson Publishers (1994).
  • Five Steps to Successful Selling. Nigtingale-Conant Corp. (1987).
  • Top Performance: How to Develop Excellence in Yourself and Others. New York: Berkley Books (1986).
  • Raising Positive Kids in a Negative World. Nashville: Oliver Nelson (1985).
  • Zig Ziglar’s Secrets of Closing the Sale. New York: Berkley Books (1982).
  • See You at the Top. Gretna: Pelican (1975).
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