It never fails to amaze me. One of life’s greatest puzzles is how the days play out. When things are going well, and life is easy, everything is golden. Nothing is too difficult. But, on the flip side, when things are bad, they get very bad. We tend to deteriorate in every way when life throws adversity at us. Why is it so hard to rise to the challenges and persevere? Why is it so tough to make it over the stumbling hurdles? When life is hard, at any given time, everything, even making a coffee in your PJ’s seems hard.
So why do we, as humans keep ending up in these whirlpools of good and bad? How do we extract ourselves and sail on less turbulent waters? Where are those positive currents that make life everything that it could and should be? (I have a lot of questions today peeps).
Like many of you, I have had periods in my life where everything seems lost. Nothing is worth anything, and I get maudlin and plain out stinky. I listen to depressing music, read lots of Plath and Poe and wander around, semi-dazed and feeling sorry for myself. I even manage to convince myself that I am either being punished or that suffering is my true destiny. (I think that’s the depraved artist deep within). Sometimes, I even make myself physically ill. I have some issues that are stress related, and they are no picnic peeps. But I have to lose that pessimism.
Alright, so it’s time to get out of that Black Hole. I call upon the powers of SciFi and start promising to make some significant life changes. It’s time to climb out of the spiral and make positive moves towards a healthier life for my mind, body, and spirit. I know that we all suffer internal struggles, no matter what our lot in life, it’s part of being human. So I have developed a first aid kit to help myself, and you my lovelies, when life seems to be spiraling down the toilet. I’m a work in progress, and I hope these tips can help you too.
- Feel. I am a little sensitive. OK, a lot sensitive, and it has taken me more than 20 years to develop a little bit of armor. If you’re like me, you are aware of your emotions. They keep a running dialogue in your mind, threatening to break out from their containment. So how do you deal with it? First aid tip 1: Embrace your emotions. FEEL what is going on in your head and heart. It is not essential to understand why you are feeling out of sorts, upset or happy. Don’t analyze, just be. Period. And breathe…it stops those blasted hiccups.
- Get Out. Literally. Nature and being outdoors have healing properties. First aid tip #2. Whenever I feel a jag coming on, I grab schizo dog and head out for a walk. I don’t understand why, but just walking under the shady trees or sitting on the sand watching the whitecaps rolling in is therapeutic. It is healing and often imparts a little wisdom.
- Write. This is my general go-to and first aid tip #3. When we are off kilter and upset, our mind plays on auto-repeat like an old cassette player. (An ode to the Sony Walkman….sigh) Combat this by writing it out. For me, I grab my purple pen and a blank page, and I let my fingers take control. No censorship – take a massive dump right here. It’s cathartic.
- Let someone in. Being human is not easy, yet the media makes us believe we lack if we struggle. Heck no – life IS hard! First aid tip #4: talk to someone you trust. Let them know that you aren’t necessarily looking for advice, but that you need someone just to listen. Vent and breathe. Just having someone to be there can go a long way.
- You are not alone. No matter what you are feeling or experiencing, you are not alone. You are not unique, but your emotions are – that’s how humanity gets personalized. You didn’t invent your feelings of angst, depression, fear or whatever. Somewhere, and I know this doesn’t make you feel better, but someone else is feeling the identical thing. The trigger is different, but the emotions are the same. You are not alone.
- This too shall pass. My grandfather (RIP) used to say this all the time. He faced many challenges throughout his life, yet was almost always smiling and apparently happy. First aid tip #5: Practice mindfulness. Being alive means that we have to accept changes and roll with the punches. (I know – cliché). Know that whatever you are going through will change. Life is like the weather – it can be stormy and dark but the morning brings a fresh new day (and hopefully some freshly brewed morning beans).
Let’s end today with this thought; maybe your life isn’t falling apart at the seams. Perhaps life is merely rearranging itself for the next great thing. So go ahead and cry, scream, sleep – whatever you need to do to let out all the negativity. Breathe and embrace your feelings and emotions – it will get better.
Stay motivated and caffeinated!