A good way to manage worries, fears and stress is to compartmentalise them.

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There is a lot of talk about living in the present, but not always a good explanation of how to achieve this… unless you can afford to mediate all day!

Dale Carnegie‎ is famous for his seminal book, How to Win Friends and Influence People.

One of his less well-known books, How to Stop Worrying and Start Living, provides great guidance on how to reduce worry and get more from life.

My favourite idea from the book is the concept of “living in day tight compartments”, because there is not much that you can do to influence the future, but there is a lot that you can do to influence the present.

Carnegie describes how a doctor he knew dealt with his worries by separating each day into day tight compartments in much the same way that an oceangoing ship has different compartments to manage flooding if the hull is breached.

By having these different departments, the ship is less likely to sink.

In a similar way, you can avoid being overwhelmed by all the worries associated with your life by treating each day as an individual compartment.

If you are a person that worries about the future a lot, this can help keep those worries proportionate.

Thinking about each day and ensuring that it goes well gives more perspective to life’s worries.

Carnegie’s idea fits in well with changing habits: if you decide what behaviour you would like to change, you can ask yourself at the beginning of each day what you can do today to have more of the behaviour you want.

Then your future will take care of itself, especially when you make each individual day go well.

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