Book notes: How to Stop Worrying and Start Living by Dale Carnegie

How to Stop Worrying and Start Living by Dale Carnegie book summary.

How to Stop Worrying and Start Living: Time-Tested Methods for Conquering Worry by Dale Carnegie

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Synopsis: “Through Dale Carnegie’s seven-million-copy best seller (recently revised) millions of people have been helped to overcome the worry habit. Dale Carnegie offers a set of practical formulas you can put to work today, formulas that will last a lifetime! Discover how to:

  • Eliminate 50 percent of business worries immediately
  • Reduce financial worries
  • Turn criticism to your advantage
  • Avoid fatigue and keep looking young
  • Add one hour a day to your waking life
  • Find yourself and be yourself – remember, there is no one on earth like you!

How to Stop Worrying and Start Living deals with fundamental emotions and ideas. It is fascinating to listen to and easy to apply. Let it change and improve you. There’s no need to live with worry and anxiety that keep you from enjoying a full, active, and happy life!” -Audible

Opening thoughts:

This book has been on my list for a long time now since one of my first personal development books was How to Win Friends and Influence People by the same author. I’m pretty excited to start this one. I imagine it might be something about how to stop worrying and start living? Lol.

Key notes:

  • This book is a collection or a report of time tested recipes for conquering worry
  • Focus on the daily bread
    • One task at a time, one grain of sand at a time
  •  If you have a worry problem, apply the formula:
    1. Ask yourself, what is the worst that can happen?
    2. Prepare to accept it if you have to
    3. Calmly proceed to improve on the worst
  • Relax and recreation
    • The most relaxing and recreating forces are:
      • A healthy religion
      • Sleep
      • Music
      • Laughter
  • 3 steps of problem analysis:
    1. Get the facts
    2. Analyze the facts
    3. Arrive at a decision and act on it
  • If a man will devote his time to securing facts in an impartial, objective way, his worries will usually evaporate in the light of knowledge
  • Keeping busy helps to drive out anxiety
  • A fundamental law of psychology: it is utterly impossible for any human mind to think of more than one thing at any given time
  • Occupational therapy is the term used by psychiatry when work is prescribed as though it were a medicine
  • Cooperate with the inevitable
  •  Don’t try to saw sawdust
  • Put a stop-loss order on your worries. Decide just how much anxiety a thing is worth and refuse to give it any more
  • Our life is what our thoughts make it
  • A man is not hurt so much by what happens as by his opinion of what happens
    • Our opinion of what happens is entirely up to us
  • Action and feeling go together
    • By regulating the action, which is more under the direct control of the will, we can more in directly regulate the feeling
  • A person does not attract what they want, but rather what they are
    • All that a person achieves is a direct result of his own thoughts
  • Think and act cheerfully, and you will feel cheerful
  • We shouldn’t judge someone else because we are all children of circumstances and conditions and experience
  •  Do not expect gratitude
    • To raise grateful children, we have to be grateful
  • Count your blessings, not your troubles
  • Let’s not imitate others. Let’s find ourselves and be ourselves
  • The most important thing in life is not to capitalize on your gains, any fool can do that
    • The really important thing is to profit from your losses. That requires intelligence
  • When life hands us a lemon, let’s try and make a lemonade
  • Making other people happy will make ourselves happy
    • Happiness is contagious, by giving we receive
    • Forget our own unhappiness by trying to create a little bit of happiness for others
  • What people want is a little attention as human beings
  • Never try and get even with our enemies because we will hurt ourselves far more than we heard them
  • Remember that unjust criticism is often a disguised complement. No one ever kicks a dead dog
  • Ask for unbiased, helpful, constructive criticism
  • Take frequent rests
  • When you face a problem, solve it then and there if you have the necessary facts to make a decision
  • Learn to organize, deputize, and supervise
  • Where your interests are is where your energy is
  • If you can’t sleep, get up and work or read until you do feel sleepy
    • Try prayer. Relax your body. Exercise so that you’re physically tired
  • Don’t take yourself too seriously. Try laughing at some of your sillier worries
  • Military principle: when fighting a battle, always keep your line of supplies open

Closing thoughts:

Very solid, foundational book. For anyone who has read How to Win Friends and Influence People, this book feels very similar. It is essentially a collection of stories that support a handful for principles for getting rid of worry. I decided to take the bare minimum of notes, mainly focusing on the high value points to be as concise as possible.

Though I enjoyed this book, it definitely didn’t change my paradigm or spur me to action on anything. However, I think I would highly recommend this book to anyone who has problems with stress and worry. While I don’t personally have this problem, I’m sure many other people do.

Nutshell: Principles on how to stop worrying and relieve stress.

Rating: 3/5

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