Frank William Boreham 1871-1959

Frank William Boreham 1871-1959
A photo F W Boreham took of himself in 1911

Sunday, January 21, 2007

Boreham on the Art of Worrying

I have often wished that somebody would write a book on The High Art of Worrying Well. I have never yet heard or read a sensible word on the subject of Worry. At the one extreme, I have known pietists and idealists who have declared, absurdly enough, that worry is wicked. And, at the opposite extreme, I have known men who worried themselves into premature graves. Between these two insanities there is a No-man's-land of common sense that lies unoccupied and unexplored.

Worry is a very good thing in its way. Those who condemn worry never stop to explain why, if it be wicked, we were sent into the world endowed with such an infinite capacity for doing it. Obviously, we were made to worry; but we were made to worry wisely. We were made to take life seriously and to feel the gravity of things. The man who never worries about his business will never have a business worth worrying about. But the trouble is that in this, as in so many other things, we go to ridiculous excess. Instead of worrying about one or two things—big things; things worthy of our worry; the things that we were sent into the world to worry about—we worry about everything! But worry is a fire that burns up the brain. In the most literal sense, therefore, it represents a burnt offering. The man who worries about too many things is laying his burnt offering on too many altars.

F W Boreham, A Tuft of Comet’s Hair (London: The Epworth Press, 1926), 195-196.