Yesterday was tough. It took a long time for the sludge to lift, but it did. I finally admitted to myself and my husband that I need to sign up for some more deep counseling work.

I texted the counselor and said “yes” to the upcoming group.
I’m saying “yes” to working through some very old pain and grief related to a loved one (who will remain nameless in my writing.)
I’m saying “yes” to taking this pain out of my emotional backpack to process and leave behind.
This is a huge “yes”!

Saying “yes” to me includes hiring a coach to help me develop habits and a healthy mindset so that I can write my books, have an active blog, and reach out to others.
This “yes” means that I choose to move forward in my life while also saying “yes” to any emotional work that shows up to be done.

My life is like a crazy dance–back and forth, back and forth–sometimes beautiful, graceful, breath-taking, and other times not-so-much.
There are many bumps, mountains, cliffs, twists, turns, and valleys.

I mostly fear the valleys of pain.
That’s where Hopelessness resides.
Hopelessness tries to ambush me when I am in the valley of pain.
I forget that Hopelessness lives there.
I forget to be on guard….but keeping my guard up doesn’t really work.
Does anything work against Hopelessness?

First let me share the things that I know for certain DON’T WORK:
1. Isolating in the pain.
When we have emotional pain, our brain sends out an emergency alert that we are sick and need to withdraw and give ourselves time to heal–thus treating our emotional pain like it is the flu. It’s not! My experience is that isolating only keeps me stuck in the pain longer.

2. Withdrawing into my own head trying to figure out a solution.
I’ve been in my own head long enough to know that if I could have worked my way through the pain, I would have years ago!

3. Holding it in.
This is where I become fully determined to function and not let others know of my pain. I actually did this for years because I didn’t have a clue that there could be another way. I still tend to default to this at the onset of emotional pain, but thankfully my loved ones can see right through this mask of mine.

Now that we’ve got that out of the way….

Here are some things that I find HELPFUL when a load of emotional pain shows up:
1. Journal….pour out heart, soul, pain.
Seek to find what is under the pain.
What is the source of this current round of pain and despair?

2. Allow some time to grieve the loss, the sorrow–whatever it is.
Perhaps an hour to be in that sad place.
Bring on the tears and Kleenex.
Roll with it.
See it through.

3. Call a friend.
This is the Secret Sauce of recovery!
It feels counter-intuitive to reach out when you are emotionally broken.
It feels so dang needy and pitiful to have nothing to offer the friend, to show up so broken.
And yet, there is great magic / beautiful healing when we reach out from that place of pain.

4. Get outside. Go for a walk.
Fresh air and sunshine can work wonders.

Personally, I like to combine going for a walk with calling a friend….tears of grief usually show up making this a trifecta of healing!!

These are some of my best ways of saying “yes” to me.

May your day be blessed as you choose to say “yes” to your own precious self!
much love,
pam