“I give myself a good cry if I need it. But then I concentrate on the good things still in my life. I don't allow myself any more self-pity than that. A little each every morning, a few tears, and that's all.”
These are not easy times for many. People my age deal with the grief associated with the loss of loved ones, friends and acquaintances. In addition there is a huge segment of the population who are struggling just to keep up. The burdens some of us carry often result in chronic depression, constant unhappiness and fear which often results in loss of hope.
I know it is not easy for people when the world seems to be closing in and they do not have the wherewithal to deal with their problems. I have been fortunate in my life that I have experienced enough challenges to know that most of my problems are transient in nature and there usually a better day tomorrow. Of course in reality none of my problems have come even close to the poverty, hunger and cruelty I have seen both here and in other parts of the world.
I sincerely believe that the antidote for most of our problems rests within ourselves but it often takes work on our part. Not too long ago I was sent the following tips offered by grief counselor Karen Mehringer. If you are looking for a happier life what she suggests may help.
4 Tools for Transforming Depression
If you find yourself feeling unmotivated, lacking energy for life, grumpy or irritable, you may be depressed. Depression is typically caused by suppressed anger, at the root of which is the feeling of powerlessness. When we give our power away, our creative life force energy becomes stifled and "depressed" and we are no longer in the flow of manifesting abundance. We are unable to be receptive to creative solutions and new possibilities.
The following is a step-by-step process to assist you in transforming depression and reclaiming your power so you can engage more fully in life:
Acknowledge your anger.
Give it a voice by writing about it. What does it have to say? Start by writing, "What I am most angry about is..." Write non-stop for ten minutes without lifting your pen. If you have trouble identifying your anger, ask for a dream to reveal its source. Perhaps you were hurt in a romantic relationship or are angry with God for the death of a loved one. What circumstance in your life do you feel powerless over? Other healthy ways to express your anger include screaming into or hitting a pillow, pounding nails into a board, physical exertion like running or working out hard, drawing or painting your feelings. You can even visualize screaming, crying, and having a temper tantrum. In whatever way works best for you, allow your anger to be expressed.
Visualize where anger resides in your body.
Imagine it as an object with a size, shape, color, and texture. For example, perhaps it is like a dark heavy bowling ball in your belly. Next, visualize taking it out of your belly and throwing it at something like a fence. See the fence being smashed and destroyed. Sometimes we need to destroy what isn't serving us before we can create new possibilities for our lives.
Imagine bringing in the energies of forgiveness and compassion, seeing them as the colors violet and pink.
Visualize mixing these energies above your head in a beautiful golden bowl along with your anger. When it feels complete, imagine pouring this transformed energy down through the crown of your head, filling your face, neck, shoulders, arms, chest, belly, legs and feet. As this energy flows through your entire body, envision it saturating every cell of your being including all of your organs and especially the area where your anger resides. See the energy flowing out of you and encompassing where you live and the people with whom you feel angry with. Imagine having a conversation with them expressing your hurt and disappointment. Share how you wish things had been different.
Visualize yourself in your power and light, connecting with your higher self/soul.
If you have trouble doing this, then remember a time when you felt happy, empowered and confident. Focus on this memory until you experience the feeling state of empowerment. Then, with your awareness, spread this feeling throughout your body. From this place, imagine forgiving those in your life who have hurt you including yourself for giving your power away in the first place. Imagine releasing the person and freeing yourself. See them in their essence and thank them for the valuable life lessons you have learned from your interactions with them.
"Feelings like disappointment, embarrassment, irritation, resentment, anger, jealousy, and fear, instead of being bad news, are actually very clear moments that teach us where it is that we're holding back...They're like messengers that show us, with terrifying clarity, exactly where we're stuck."
She said: I am a very nervous flyer. During a trip from California to Indiana, it didn't help that my connecting flight from Denver was delayed twice because of mechanical problems. Then, after we were aloft, I noticed the lights began flickering. I mentioned this to a flight attendant. "I'll take care of it," she said. Moments later the lights went out.
Clearly she had solved the problem by turning off all the lights. A passenger across the aisle who had been watching me leaned over and said, "Whatever you do, please don't ask about the engines."
Eyedropper: A clumsy ophthalmologist.
It was a large wedding party, and afterwards the photographer took a long time getting family groups together for pictures. The groom sat by me, waiting with barely concealed impatience. "Now I'd like to get the bride alone," the photographer finally announced.
Leaning towards me, the groom whispered, "So would I!"
She said: Question authority, but not mine.
I noticed the neighbor down the street was home every day, so after a few weeks I asked him what was going on.
He replied, "I left my job because of illness and fatigue."
A few weeks later, his wife gave me the real truth of what happened.
Turns out my neighbor's boss got sick and tired of him.
When my generation was your age, we took crazy risks. The wildest thing was---prepare to be shocked---we deliberately ingested carbohydrates!
When my three-year-old son opened the birthday gift from his grandmother, he discovered a water pistol. He squealed with delight and headed for the nearest sink. I was not so pleased.
I turned to Mom and said, "I'm surprised at you. Don't you remember how we used to drive you crazy with water guns?"
Mom smiled and then replied....."Oh......I remember!"
Life is not about waiting for the storms to pass... It's about learning how to dance in the rain.
Stay well, do good work, and have fun.
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