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Worrier or Warrior? Monday September 21, 2015

[If you'd like to listen to an audio version of this blog read by Lex, please follow this link:]

Oh what a difference a couple of vowel movements can make! Swap an "A" for an "O" - and change begins to flow; then a final "E" for an "O" and off we really go!

Two words with the same framework of consonants and one shared vowel in the same place: W-rri-r, but what a different outcome! Of course, the vowel they both share in the same place is the identifying letter, "I". "I" is the decision-maker!

I've been a professional Worrier for years - paralysed by fears.

But I'd rather be a Warrior, ready for action. And I think that this is the difference that makes a difference: taking action. When I focus on worrying, I become frozen and inactive. Everything seizes and ceases. But if I seize the moment and take action, everything changes. Sometimes gradually; sometimes dramatically.

I can't pretend to be brave, but perhaps being courageous doesn't require one to be brave?

Perhaps the courageous person is the one who takes action when other people hesitate?

Through the eyes of my inner Worrier, I have some impossible challenges before me - 50 years of clutter and mess to sort, save or shed.

Through the eyes of my inner Warrior, I have a plan: one box at a time, one shelf at a time, one cupboard at a time. It's not a battle like so many dear people are having to face for their future at the moment - I am not in dire straits, so it's important to have a sense of perspective. But emotionally, it is a battle for me.

We are all in a tug of war between our Inner Worrier and our Inner Warrior. Today, I would appeal to your Inner Warrior and simply ask, "What's the first physical action you can take?"

I wish you a courageous day!

A Moodscope member.

Thoughts on the above? Please feel free to post a comment below.

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Leah Mon, Sep 21st 2015 @ 5:44am

I am worrier warrior, as I worry while I battle on or I battle on while I worry. I have been there with the decluttering with my parents house after they died and then with my own every time I moved.
Are you doing all your blogs as sound pieces? This is first time I have listened as I thought they had strange music on them!

First physical action, sort out books on top of bookshelf in bedroom that are about to fall over.
I will still worry where I will put them, but I will face them with my brave face. Thanks, if you lived closer you could give me all your unwanted books!!!

Hopeful One Mon, Sep 21st 2015 @ 6:29am

Hi Lex- a mind bending blog to wake up to! One could use the analogy of the American Indian chief's tale where in reply to his grandson query says it really depends on which wolf one chooses to feed -the worrier or the warrior? I seem to start of with the worrier but always end up
Feeding the warrior.Little Guy Once upon a time,

I start my day with a raid on a joke site and press the random tab This is what turned up . Completely irrelevant but it got me laughing which I find is a great way to begin a day Apologies to any Moodscoper who finds it offensive - remember it is only a joke and at no on's expense .

A guy was sitting at a bar. He was throwing money around, giving the barman hundred pound tips and buying drinks for everyone. He was surrounded by a crowd of adoring women. The barman liked the tips, but he was kind of curious about a little man that would jump from the rich guy's pocket. The little man would run up and down the bar, kicking over the bowls of peanuts and giving people the finger. Then the little guy would jump back into the man's jacket for a while. The barman went over and asked the guy what was up. So the rich guy says, "Well, let me tell you a little story. I was walking along a beach one day, and I come across this lamp. I rub it, and a genie popped out. I got three wishes, so my first wish was to be fabulously wealthy. Then I wished for a harem. You can see I got both." The barman asks, "So what about that little guy in your jacket?" "Oh, that," mumbles the rich guy. "That's the twelve-inch prick I wished for.'

Lynne Mon, Sep 21st 2015 @ 6:52am

After years of clearing my parents house this weekend I can finally see some space occurring:D Keep going all you clutter clearers its only taken me 15years!:D

Debs Mon, Sep 21st 2015 @ 6:59am

Thank you Lex, your blog is so timely: I am currently lying in bed paralysed by fear because I have to go and collect my little boy today which means driving round the M25 and then facing his father, both of which fill me with utter dread. My stomach is tight, I can't breathe properly and all I want to do is curl up in a ball and shut out the world.
I know I'll do it, I know I'll survive but it doesn't make the worry any less. The funny (strange not ha ha) thing is that mostly when I've done the thing that scares me most I calm down and if I let myself I feel proud for getting through it. I wonder what it would be feel like to bring that calm to the situation now. It feels an impossible task but I'm willing to try. I'm going to take action - get up, meditate, shower, have a cup of tea and be incredibly kind to myself. And I'm going to tackle my thoughts, tell myself that I'm ok, that I can do this and it will all be fine. One step at a time.
Wish me luck fellow warrior and thank you for a courageous blog xxx

Lesley Mon, Sep 21st 2015 @ 8:28pm

Well done, Debs. You are so right about doing the thing that scares you most and then feeling calm afterwards. As a child I avoided things that scared me and was allowed to avoid them. I was anxious about loud noises and water. The water one I now realise was a complete phobia and nobody back in the 1960s and 70s knew how to coach children in water phobias. It was a case of get in and if you can't float or swim, sink. I have become physically ill - chronically so - through worry and anxiety instead of either standing up for myself or just saying how I feel. The M25 can be made better with the right music. The father of your son is just a speck in the universe no more and you can go in there, beaming and joyous because deep inside you, there is the light of joy and life. Go for it! x

Lex Mon, Sep 21st 2015 @ 7:20am

Hi Debs, I think you've given yourself some of the best advice I've ever read or heard. Go you! I caught the latest episode of Dr Who at the weekend. He's going to use his future knowledge to go back and influence the past. Maybe we could meditate, like you said, on how you know you will feel when you've conquered, and then take that feeling 'back in time' to the present. Sounds weird but I think we do time travel all the time - emotionally. How many of us have ruined a day worrying about tomorrow? James, the lovely fellow who cleans our radio studio has just come in - radiant. He's on holiday tomorrow, and he is already enjoying the thought of it. Isn't that time travel.
So, dear Debs, let's borrow from your successful future to boost your courage in the present.

Lex Mon, Sep 21st 2015 @ 7:22am

Lynne, you've given me hope. I've put this off for 4 years - maybe longer if I count moving boxes from one place to another. Well done you. L'xx

Lynne Tue, Sep 22nd 2015 @ 7:58am

Hi Lex, 10 things.... 10 weeds removed, 10 bits of paper sifted, 10 old photos looked at and sorted, helped a lot. Thanks for your encouragement. I know what you mean about moving boxes!

Lex Mon, Sep 21st 2015 @ 7:25am

Hey Hopeful One, what a great reminder of the "which wolf we'll feed" blog. Would be great to find out when that was so that Moodscopers who missed it can read it again. Jokes, I believe, feed my Warrior! They certainly give me good energy!

Lex Mon, Sep 21st 2015 @ 7:45am

Leah! Worrier Warrior! I like that! I'm not actually getting rid of my beloved books... that would be like losing a part of me. A few are 'going' to other homes, but this is boxing up with the hope of one day being able to be surrounded by books again! Wall to wall and wall to ceiling books is the dream! We're clearing my recording studio so that it can be used again. Which leads me into the audio point you made... my intention is to record all the blogs. Intention! The reason being I think it's great to be able to see, read, hear - whatever anyone's preference is in the moment. My Nan went blind fairly early on in her adult life and I know she relished the Talking Books she regularly borrowed. I think we've got a message of hope that would be great for the widest possible audience to access - though video, audio, and printable on-screen formats. It takes a lot more time though - hence the intention comment!

Lex Mon, Sep 21st 2015 @ 7:54am

Well, folks, I'm going to be off-line most of today - so please forgive any seeming lack of response to your kind comments until probably tomorrow. Always appreciate your words and I know that we all support one another so I expect there will responses from other Moodscopers giving encouragement. (Oooo... I think that is the first time I've ever noticed "courage" in the word "encouragement" - where have I been?!!!)

the room above the garage Mon, Sep 21st 2015 @ 7:55am

HO, love it, please keep raiding the joke box for us :-D
Lex I too am regular worrier (about everything, no discrimination!) but I think I can use the vowel movement to my benefit. Time to make a change. I find I put off clearing out because I know I will become sentimentally stuck and go in circles. It's made easier when I'm annoyed at it...then I can clear out in a much more decisive way. Any chance you can get yourself there?!!!?! :-D
Debs, can you plan the worry? I mean things like "I won't enjoy this, but I can do it, that roundabout is the one that makes my heart beat like mad so I will turn the music down before I get there, take two deep breaths and remind myself I've done this before" then have a handful of jelly babies once you're through it. Next, picking up your son, expect to feel bad when you see your ex partner and so make yourself say only positive stuff for that short time. You'll come out feeling on top. I don't know...just ramblings as I'm in a hurry but I hope it goes well. You've done this before, it's going to work.
Love ratg x.

Petal Mon, Sep 21st 2015 @ 8:00am

A great blog Lex, I love word play and also am a worrier and a warrior. Now I can use time travel and change that. Maybe that could be in the past! If I've been feeding both wolves, the shift makes the change easier to manage! Rather than changing me, which seems difficult, I simply have to stop feeding those pesky wolves! ( and the annoying monkey that hangs out with them!)
Taking action is good, but I occasionally find myself choosing fight rather than flight, my warrior needs a little refining! :).

I also have an inner battle with hoarding. Holding onto anger but burying it. So my house always looks way too cluttered. Thank you and everyone's comments for the inspiration and motivation to take action, to just declutter one little space at a time. I love yoga, so maybe I'll become a yogic warrior! (a yoga pose). Strong, steady and calm. I'd love to read the Amerindian blog that's been mentioned.

Hopeful one your joke made me literally laugh out loud! :)) please let me know where find those jokes, indeed a great way to start the day! :)) Love to all xx

Lex Mon, Sep 21st 2015 @ 8:10am

Hi Petal
I now have this image of a Yogic Warrior in my minds-eye, and it's a good picture.
One little space at a time!

Lesley Mon, Sep 21st 2015 @ 8:35pm

Lex, great encouragement and feedback. Who do you email the blog to? I have wiped my Outlook and don't have the relevant email address any more. Doh! I thought it was Caroline@ ....? Thank you.

Caroline Ashcroft from Moodscope Mon, Sep 21st 2015 @ 11:00pm

Hi Lesley, it's

Lex Mon, Sep 21st 2015 @ 8:12am

Hey RATG... YES! I can harness the power of anger and being annoyed at a situation to drive me to action! Most emotional states can be used to serve us, can't they? Loved your support to Debs

Sally Mon, Sep 21st 2015 @ 8:33am

Just what I needed today! I have a backlog of worries to sort... Where to start ? You have definitely all given me food for thought. :-)

Lex Mon, Sep 21st 2015 @ 8:47am

Hi Sally, Just the first step, that's all we need. You know you've got so much wisdom inside of you. Your wise inner you will show you where to start. L'xx

Mary Mon, Sep 21st 2015 @ 12:47pm

Great blog as always Lex. At the moment I am neither a worrier or a warrior; I am a lump of jelly. Still - I cleared away all the craft stuff my daughter had out yesterday and restored some order to my study. That feels better. And I am about to take action on my first novel and send it to the proof-readers. I will have at least done something.

Bearofliddlebrain Mon, Sep 21st 2015 @ 1:55pm

A great blog reminding us how we can choose to feed the wolf at the door: it's raining, so I chose the warrior woolluff this morning and have sorted the summer clothes out, folded and put away the ones to keep and have a huge pile of lovely clothes that are now too big...(huzzah, haven't been feeding the hungry bear/woolluf as much and am maintaining the weight!) ....will take them to the charity shop. Autumn/winter clothes unfolded and hanging in wardrobe!
Thanks for the courageous push in the right direction, Lex!
Thanks to HO for the joke - nortybutfunny! hope you conquered your fears and now have your son back home with you without trouble from his father or the M25!!!
Sometimes, once we have been brave we see that "there is nothing to fear, but fear itself." (Said by an American president or someone clever, not I, said the Bear!)
Mary....wibble, wobble, black bobble.....I'm imagining you as a jelly! Hope you're as steady as a rock now that order has been restored!
Petal - listen flower, when a horrid thought pops up in your mind, accept that it's arrived, then mentally or physically tell it you have thought about it and if you cannot do anything about the thing that is bothering you, then it can leave! When I'm gardening or crocheting etc., I am concentrating on what I'm doing, but negative thoughts pop in and I have to make myself breathe and bring thoughts back to what I am doing, pushing the horrid stuff out. I think one of the worst things we worry about is stuff that we have no control over. The "what ifs" are a p.i.a!!!!!
Bear x

Julia Mon, Sep 21st 2015 @ 2:35pm

I am a worrier, no doubt about that! A warrior, I am not so sure. Some things don't challenge me enough for me to worry about them. De cluttering I like doing. I worry about events or things which are going to disrupt my routine in the future as I know how difficult these things are to take in my stride. I think I'm a muddler rather than a warrior. I definitely muddle through the things I know I don't want to do but know I absolutely have to. Where there is no escape!

susan Mon, Sep 21st 2015 @ 3:10pm

i have been so fearful all my life of EVERYthing that i couldn't discern the really scary stuff from the not so scary stuff. I am a warrior and also a crippled worrier. A recent quote on worry REALLY scared me, though, and has helped: "to worry is to use your imagination to create a reality that you do not want". Sorry, i know i have quoted this before recently, but here it is again just in case. But i still worry...and recently i worry a lot about being stressed (but life is stressful...) which means there is a constant striving to simplify, simplify. That includes de-cluttering. Getting really ticked off with the 'stuff' helps and sending piles to the charity shop or bins is a huge de-stressor. (If it doesn't 'spark joy' then get rid of it - Maria Kondo). Oh dear, i'm all over the place with this comment. Thanks Lex, and to all of you; i've really enjoyed your comments. xx

The Gardener Mon, Sep 21st 2015 @ 3:38pm

I've given up worrying - not because I've solved mine and the world's problems, but because it stresses me out, and at the moment I can't afford it. Lex used the word 'courageous', I get false kudos for 'courage' from everybody around here for my new house antics and taking my husband out at all. A lot is more classifiable as 'foolhardy' - the choice is stark, that or do nothing at all, ever again. Surely, Lex, with your intelligence, monitoring your Moodscope results help? Or are you one of those who have not done it for yonks? When I did statistics, and got some improbable result, I was told, first check you have not made a stupid mistake, re-check your data imput, then, if the results are still startling, look for a cause (as a historian, usually an epidemic). I digress, but not much. Whenever my Moodscope graph results do a nose-dive, I look to see if it's a 'run' in which case I've got the glooms. But a sudden nose-dive is easy to trace - last night was so grim I was posting blogs at 2 a.m. My results were awful - luckily one of our major 'mentors' was due - she, immediately, went to the root - the Alzheimer has reached another stage, and I need more help, and can get it. I was miserable and exhausted, and nearly without hope for any decent future, but NOT worried. Worries need attacking, shaking like a terrier with a rat, and, if you are academic analyse the wretched thing. Worries left alone will mushroom, believe me. Oh dear, I do go on - take the poker to those worries, Lex. Love and bon courage.

Lesley Mon, Sep 21st 2015 @ 8:17pm

The Gardener - I love your expression "take a poker to them" - very warrior like. Worrying since childhood my lack of taking a poker to them has caused many a problem and lost me a life and a family. Bravo! I need to grow up and get out of waifdom and answer back. Brought up to be so good and not to want anything, I only believed that I could have anything good if I worked damn damn hard for it. Happiness has to be earned - not a useful precept - but that's another blog xx

Eva Tue, Sep 22nd 2015 @ 6:48am

Dear Gardener, I am glad that you have been given advice re the next stage of your husbands illness and that you are going to get a bit more help. Maybe you will get a wee bit more time for yourself through this. Just to let you know I am thinking of you and do so often. In a tiny way I have been through something slightly similar where you don't know how to sustain support for someone you love indefinitely at a certain standard / pace. It's great that you have your mentor to turn to.

Hopeful One Mon, Sep 21st 2015 @ 7:57pm

Hi Petal - hope this reply finds you as tapping on the reply button below your contribution produced zilch . I use

And bearofliddlebrain- I agree it was a little wicked but only marginally so I hope.

Bearofliddlebrain Mon, Sep 21st 2015 @ 8:10pm

Totally agree....tee hee! And I can't get the 'reply' button to work's obviously not courageous enough to let us use it today!!!

Lesley Mon, Sep 21st 2015 @ 8:15pm

Thank you, Lex. This is true! I have found that some binaural beats music helps me focus and address things like doing the washing up, and taking action. Talking of words with similar structures, "meditation", "mediation" and "medication" come to mind. Also, focusing not on the problem but using deep relaxation with the caveat of some form of action helps.

The Gardener - I love your expression "take a poker to them" - very warrior like. Worrying since childhood my lack of taking a poker to them has caused many a problem and lost me a life and a family. Bravo!

Lex Tue, Sep 22nd 2015 @ 9:17am

Looks like we're all new fans of "Take a Poker to Them!" Well done The Gardener. Any community needs it's own language to bond more closely. I can see quite a lot of phrases becoming popular: "shrimp happens!" included. L'xx

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