“I’ve had enough,” Carol exploded. “It’s been a bad week: I’ve lost my favourite scarf, my house is a mess, my teenage son is failing school, and my husband spends all his time working or watching TV.” She burst into tears. “And when I stepped on the scale this morning, I’d put on three pounds.”
Overwhelmed by the sheer pace of her life, Carol, my normally fun-loving and competent client, was at the end of her rope.
“I’m mad at myself – I can’t find any joyful thoughts,” she continued. “And now I’m worried that with all these depressing thoughts the only thing I’m going to attract is more depressing events.”
Have you ever felt like this – worried, frustrated, and overwhelmed? It happens to all of us from time to time.
When you are feeling worried and overwhelmed, you don’t have access to bliss – sometimes you can’t even get to just OK. But it takes reaching for joy to turn things around. What a paradox! So what can you do?
First, remember you can’t jump from overwhelm to joy in one leap. It’s a gradual thing, so:
1. Stop. Stop moving. Take a time out to be still, even if it’s just 5 seconds.
2. Breathe. Take a few deep breaths and come fully into the moment. Notice what is going on in your body.
3. Accept yourself exactly where you are right now. Let it be ok to feel what you are feeling, to be human and fallible. It’s just a temporary place on the way to someplace better.
4. Remember who you really are. You’ve just forgotten in this moment that you are much more than just this physical body separated in time and space from other bodies. You are a pure positive extension of Source Energy or God. Your basic essence is pure unconditional love and joy.
Allow yourself to feel your emotions – all of them. When the fuel gauge in your car hits low, you don’t beat it up, do you? Of course not! It’s simply an indication that your car is running low on fuel.
Your feelings are a wonderful guidance system; when you feel low it’s an indication that your thoughts aren’t in sync with what your Source Energy knows to be true. When you doubt your worth, that awful feeling lets you know that you are not aligned with the Divine.
So, when you can’t go instantly from overwhelm to joy, don’t beat yourself up – when you can’t access thoughts of joy, reach for relief from your pain, frustration and worry first – try soothing yourself.
So how can you soothe yourself?
5. Focus on what you want
6. Reach for thoughts that feel better.
In the example above, Carol started with the one thing that was bothering her the worst at the moment: the state of her home.
What she wanted was to have a clean, organized, comfortable home where she could find what she needed and where she could relax – and she wanted her husband and son to help in maintaining it that way.
To soothe herself, she told herself:
- I’ve been able to get my home organized before.
- I don’t have to do it all at once.
- I have some things in my space that I don’t really need that would be easy to get rid off.
She kept talking to herself in this vein and gradually started to feel a little better. And from this place of feeling a little better, it was easier to reach for other good-feeling thoughts. Eventually, she was able to come up with some soothing thoughts about her relationship with her husband and with her son.
- I appreciate how my husband helps out with the trash and recycling.
- I appreciate how my son cleans up the dishes after supper.
Within the next few minutes, from this place of feeling better, Carol remembered that she was a powerful creator and could design her life as she wanted. She came up with some inspired ideas about what action steps she could take.
- She would take time each morning to meditate and create her day with intentions.
- She would share with her husband and son what she appreciated about them and ask them for a little more help around the house.
- She would devote 15 minutes a day to clear out a small area of her home.
Once Carol was feeling better, the ideas came quickly and easily. Once she could access her inner guidance, her ideas were inspired by love and joy.
Here’s a recap:
When you are not feeling good, you lack confidence and your efforts are laced with struggle. You can see only a few possibilities.
When you feel good, you have more confidence, you feel more worthy and you have access to more possibilities. In your joy, you connect with the energy that makes things happen.
So when you’re feeling crappy, crabby, and cranky (not to mention sorry for yourself …)
3. Accept yourself exactly where you are right now.
4. Remember who you really are.
5. Focus on what you want.
6. Reach for thoughts that feel better.
Remember: the better you feel, the better your life works. Reclaim your power by reclaiming your joy. Joy first. Then anything else you have time for.