“What-if-thoughts” tend to grow like a snowball that’s rolling …

Today I received an email from my bank advisor. He asks if I have control over my pension savings and whether I am paying for an insurance policy that covers in the event that I am affected by illness or premature death.

Hmmmm…. I really appreciate that my bank adviser keeping an eye on me. I interpret it as good service that he proactively contacts me. But … in my world, there are also some topics that trigger certain thoughts within me.

Pension … I’m still young and fresh. Retirement age – it’s so far out in the future that I can’t relate to it. And maybe I’m going to work all my life. Who knows. And when the e-mail gets me thinking, it is because I know that maybe I’m not THAT young anymore. And I want to be able to live at an old age with money to enjoy life.

Insurance if I suffer from illness or death. That’ll only happen to the neighbor NOT me … or what ?!

So what do I do with the thoughts that a friendly mail from my bank advisor initiates. Initially the thoughts creates worries in me. I am self employed and have started several companies over the last 8 years. It is a life of fluctuating income and a high degree of uncertainty, and there have certainly been periods of my life where I haven’t put money aside for retirement. So …. he has a point! What if I can’t afford salt for my egg once I get old. What then… And what if the accident is out, and I get hit in the head by a roof tile. What then…

If I give these concerns attention and keep my focus on them, there is a great risk that they will grow. “What-if-thoughts” tend to grow like a snowball that’s rolling … But there is an alternative. YES!

There is two things I can do, when I get concerns and want to stop them. One is going into solution-focused thinking. Worries and solution-focused thinking cannot be there at the same time. In this way, I will stop the worries. If I don’t have a solution ready at hand, I can only do one other thing. And that is moving my focus away from the worries. They want to fade out, and they won’t fill me up. Does that remove that problem? No. But then I will be in control of which thoughts fill me up and when. It should not be the other way around. And I will find a the solution to my retirement savings and insurance policies when I decide. Not when some thoughts happen to pop up after I’ve received an email!

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