If events in your life have you stressed, and the chaos keeps you awake at night, maybe you can find peace in what the Worry Table tells us. Studies have shown the following about: Things We Worry About.

Things that never happen, 40 percent. Things that can’t be changed by all the worry in the world, 35 percent. Things that turn out better than expected, 15 percent. Petty, useless worries, 8 percent. Legitimate worries, 2 percent. Total 100 percent.

The point: It’s 50 to 1 against the worry being a real cause for concern. Those are pretty good odds.

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There’s an old story that shows how one person handles the stress in his life. The story is titled “The Small Tree.” With all the divisiveness in America today, maybe we all should consider the message. Can’t we all just step back and take a deep breath?

I hired a plumber to help me restore an old farmhouse, and after he had just finished a rough first day on the job, a flat tire made him lose an hour of work, his electric drill quit and his ancient one ton truck refused to start. I offered him a ride home.

While I drove him home, he sat in stony silence. On arriving, he invited me in to meet his family. As we walked toward the front door, he paused briefly at a small tree, touching the tips of the branches with both hands. When opening the door he underwent an amazing transformation.

His tanned face was wreathed in smiles and he hugged his two small children and gave his wife a kiss. Afterward he walked me to the car. We passed the tree and my curiosity got the better of me. I asked him about what I had seen him do earlier.

“Oh, that’s my trouble tree,” he replied. “I know I can’t help having troubles on the job, but one thing’s for sure, those troubles don’t belong in the house with my wife and two children. So I just hang them up on the tree every night when I come home and ask God to take care of them. Then in the morning I pick them up again.”

“Funny thing is,” he smiled, “When I come out in the morning to pick’em up, there aren’t as many as I remember hanging up the night before.”

Did the plumber have a magic tree? I doubt it…I think any tree will do the trick.

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Keeping with the theme, here’s an article I found in May 1989 that was copied from an issue of the Indiana Journal. The author was not cited but it’s titled Today and Time. We all find ourselves refreshed by the presence of cheerful people. Why not make earnest effort to confer that pleasure on others?

Today is here. I will start with a smile and resolve to be agreeable. I will not criticize. I refuse to waste my valuable time.

Today is one thing in which I know I am equal with all other—-Time. All of us draw the same salary in seconds, minutes and hours.

Today I will not waste my time because the minutes I wasted yesterday are as lost as a vanished thought.

Today I refuse to spend time worrying about what might happen—-it usually doesn’t. I am going to spend time making things happen.

Today I am determined to study to improve myself, for tomorrow, I may be wanted and I must not be found lacking.

Today I am determined to do the things that I should do. I firmly determine to stop doing things I should not do.

Today I begin by doing and not wasting my time. In one week I will be miles beyond the person I am today.

Today I will not imagine what I would do if things were different. They are not different, I will make success with what material I have.

Today I will stop saying “If I had time”—-I know I never will “find time” for anything. If I want time I must have it.

Today I will act toward other people as though this might be my last day on earth. I will not wait for tomorrow. Tomorrow never comes.

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Writer James Allen had the following to say about The Power of Thought. “As you think, you travel; as you love, you attract. You are today where your thoughts have brought you; you will be tomorrow where your thoughts take you.

“You cannot escape the results of your thoughts but you can endure and learn; can accept and be glad. You will realize the vision of your heart, be it base or beautiful, or a mixture of both; for you will always gravitate towards that which you, secretly, most love.

“Into your hands will be placed the exact results of your thoughts; you will receive that which you earn; no more, no less. Whatever your present environment may be, you will fall, remain, or rise with your thoughts, your wisdom, your ideas.

“You will become as small as your controlling desires, as great as your dominant aspirations.”