Tuesday, December 29, 2015

How To Keep Your New Year New

Hello again. I missed you while I was gone. It's been an eventful couple of weeks for me. First my computer bellied up, stone dead, and couldn't be revived. So I had to get a new one. Then my backdoor slammed on my hand with a force that put my body in shock, and I fainted on my kitchen floor. I was in the hospital 3 times in 2 weeks, and I'm still in the process of recovery.

We never know what each new day will bring. And we never know what each new year will bring. Life itself is a mixture of challenges and easy sledding, and there's no guarantee for what we get. We have more power than we realize to ensure better outcomes, but we tend to take whatever comes. And we forget that each new day or year offers new chances to lighten our burdens and bring more joy.

Have you ever thought of releasing some of those burdens you've carried inside for a long time? Or do you think you're just stuck with them forever? Have you ever watched a child building a tower with blocks, one after the other, until suddenly he puts one more block on top, and the whole tower falls?

That's kind of what we do in life. We get through one challenge after another, but we fail to release our heartaches, mistakes, regrets, losses, whatever brought us pain, and we store them somewhere inside pushing them down when they resurface. And our burdens get heavier. Everything that happens in your life fills a space somewhere inside, and you can only hold so much. But life can become lighter when you clear out old hurts and make room for new happier times.

Think about what you'd like to release. Do you hold a grudge against someone, or mourn a lost friendship, or live with self-criticism over past mistakes, or allow regrets to gnaw at you, or hold anger toward those who hurt you, or a habit that does not serve you, etc? We hold onto these things with both fists and carry them with us. And our new years lose their sparkle. They become just new places to put the old baggage.

So now you're facing a new year, and in order to make this one new, you must clear out some of what you don't want and make room for what you do want. Clear out the old, and make the new ready for more happy times. Before you step over the line to your new year, make a list of all the painful thoughts, feelings, and events you've been holding onto. And make a commitment to let go. Then, in your mind, picture a large balloon, any color you want, and drop your list into the balloon. Tie the top of the balloon and tap the bottom lightly. Now watch it float up into a beautiful blue sky as you smile and wave goodbye to those burdens you've been carrying. And let them go with a happy heart.

As you enter this new year, take with you all the goodness and happiness you've known in the past, and know that you can grow and expand with it during your new year. And this will give you the strength you need when new challenges come. Now you have room to find more of your true self...your beautiful self.

I wish you newness of life with peace in your heart.


Tuesday, December 1, 2015

The Power of Tears Before Your Healing Begins

"There is a sacredness in tears. They are not the mark of weakness, but of power. They are the messengers of overwhelming grief, of deep contrition, and of unspeakable love." Washington Irving

Was there ever a time when the tears on your face reflected your breaking heart, and someone said to you, "Stop blubbering, and get a life?" That's the attitude some people have about crying. A sign of weakness? No. Crying is a sign of being human. And all you wanted...needed...was for someone to understand without judgment or criticism.

Tearless grief bleeds inwardly. Christian Nevell Bovee

Or suppose you force a weak smile and choke on your tears so no one will know you're dying inside, and someone might say, "What's 'wrong' with you? Can't you at least be sociable?" They don't know. How could they. It's your secret.
We encourage tears of joy. Seeing someone's happy tears brings happiness in us. But what are you supposed to do when you lose someone you love or something important to you like a job, income, your home, a friend, your health, etc, and you experience emotional suffering? Tears well up inside for a purpose. They're your gift for healing. And there should be no shame in allowing them to pour out. They may not change a situation, and some broken hearts may never heal completely, but tears can cleanse the soul and bring you peace. They reduce stress and supply the strength you need to go on and do what you can to remedy a situation when possible.

Don't discount the wonder of your tears. They can be healing waters and a stream of joy. Sometimes they are the best words the heart can speak. The Shack/William P. Young

At some time in our life we all experience painful situations when we either release the pain with tears or stuff it down and work to keep a lid on it, maybe crying only when we're alone. And those times can be accompanied with guilt, embarrassment, self-criticism, shame, etc. After all, aren't we all supposed to be strong and brave...like tears are wrong? No, tears are a necessary part of living and, sometimes, a way to finally smile again.

How to find your smile:
I don't discourage crying. In fact I believe in planned 'pity-parties'. There's nothing wrong with feeling sorry for yourself sometimes. Plan 30 minutes to one hour when you can be alone and cry into piles of tissues, talk to yourself, say things like, 'it hurts sooo bad', 'I feel broken in pieces'...on and on...however you feel. Let your tears flow freely and release your pain.
Then when the time is up and you're thoroughly exhausted, lay on the floor on your back, arms and legs out to the side, and breathe. Feel your freedom to just breathe. Now thank your body for letting go, and allow a smile to linger on your beautiful face. Then when you're ready, go directly to an activity you had in reserve before you started. Maybe mop the kitchen floor to some jazzy music. Whether you feel like it or not.

Pity-parties can help as long as you plan them, and turn them off when the time is up. And they don't need to be planned far ahead. I've used this method many times in the past, and sometimes when feelings got too heavy, I did my pity-party right then. And each one relieved some of my suffering.

In our worst of times, we must look for something to shed light on the darkness. Author 

One time in desperation I went to my Minister, and she asked if there was anything in my home that I thought was beautiful. I said, "Nothing is beautiful to me now." And she said, "Then go find things you used to think were beautiful, and put those in your home." So I brought new plants, flowers, pictures, incense, and music into my home. And I felt some light return where there had been none.

So cry your tears when you hurt. Then rediscover the light in your life, and let your light shine. You always had your light. You just couldn't see it through your tears.

Now this from jonathan lockwood huie. May your spirit soar throughout the vast cathedral of your being. May your mind whirl joyful cartwheels of creativity. May your heart sing sweet lullabies of timelessness.

I wish you healing strength beneath your tears.