According to the National Headache Foundation more than 45 million Americans suffer from various types of recurring headaches. Reports show that the majority of these headaches are tension related. The NHF suggests that “learning to live one day at a time” may relieve anxiety that contributes to the pain and inconvenience of muscle-contraction headaches.
Long before this admonition appeared on NHF’s “52 Ways to Reduce Stress” list, Jesus said, “Don’t worry about tomorrow. Today has enough dilemmas. Learn to face life one day at a time.” (Joan’s paraphrase of Matthew 6:34!)
This advice is difficult for some of us to follow. After spending today making big plans for tomorrow, we then worry that something might go haywire. We pray for direction with a choice, and then worry we made the wrong decision. We advise others (whether they ask for it or not) and then worry that they won’t heed our counsel. Persistent worry becomes a pain in the neck…literally.
Yet with God’s help we can learn to focus less on tomorrow’s “what-ifs” and more on doing the best we can at the current moment. Then our muscles can relax and we can breathe deeper, reducing our worry-related pain and tension.
Fact is: The elimination of all stress is impossible in this imperfect world. AND I find it encouraging that practicing “living one day at a time” can alleviate unnecessary anxiety in my life. What about you?
Joan C. Webb
Writing, teaching, coaching to empower and set free.