Friday, March 21, 2014
The last couple months have been the most challenging. I have given myself time to grieve and I understand that there will still be days that will be more challenging. Now I have to make the choice to move forward. Something I am going to work on for now on are daily affirmations. 10.) I choose to be happy. I will make the conscious choice to not dwell on sadness. I will make the choice to be happy today.
Something I learned through my Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) sessions was that I need to learn how to not only love myself, but to believe that I am worthy. #9 I am worthy of having joy in my life. This will coordinate with the next affirmation as well, but I am not my past. Bad things have happened, but I will no longer let the past chain me down.
There have been days where I have felt numb and my delusional thought pattern playing like the broken record in my head tells me over and over that I have been dragged through hell repeatedly, I release my past. One of my first steps in getting myself back on my feet, I have been looking for a job, I prepare for my future. Something that I think has helped me keep my sanity is the ability to laugh and play, I live in the present. #8 is actually three affirmations, but when you play the glad game there are never enough affirmations. Remember The Glad Game from Pollyanna?
Journaling can be an outlet for a lot of different things. It can give you a better perspective of where you started, where you are going, and how far you have come. I would suggest by writing down a couple small goals. When you have reached these goals make sure to give yourself a reward. When I journal, I always coordinate with a devotional, and when I write it is in the form of prayer. Thanking God for my blessings, praying for those less fortunate, and then what is plaguing my thoughts. #7 Everyday, in every way, I am getting better and better.
Often, I wonder what my purpose is here. People will tell you that He has a plan. God does have a plan for all of us, His plan. The challenge is the mystery of not knowing. Either way, #6 is something I have to work on, knowing and believing that I am too big a gift to this world to feel self-pity and sadness. Negativity breeds more negativity and will only drag you down, it is a plague.
Something that I tell people all the time is how negativity breeds more negativity - it's why miserable people like to attempt to make others miserable and drag them down with them. However, there is a simple tool or technique to practice that will help you to shine, like #5. When you think of something negative, immediately replace it with two thoughts of something positive. For example: If you say "I'm stupid", immediately recognize this thought patter and then say to things you know contradict this, for me it would be "I did well in college and obtained my AA" this is an achievement, the second would be "I am smart, I know how to..." then say something you know how to do like canoe, swim, bake, write, etc. It works! This took me years to work through. I grew up thinking that I wasn't smart because I had someone tell me that I wasn't smart when I was younger - just because I was naive, doesn't mean I was stupid.
Have you ever noticed, the more down you are, the less energy you have? I think our society has depended so much on coffee or caffeine to fuel their drive, that they forget the euphoria within the energy of chasing your dreams. When I was relaunching my first book, I was motivated and faced each day with that positive hope of my desired outcome. #4 My dreams need my energy to make them come true.
Through my sessions I also learned why I push this concept aside. Granted, my parents are wonderful, have provided for me, and to this day are still there for me and support me in everything that I do. During the session I felt horrible, but the therapist helped me to understand that this doesn't mean my parents did anything wrong either - we were addressing and acknowledging my feelings and thought patterns. That being said, I felt like I didn't matter because growing up I was often told to be quiet, so as a child I learned survival by hiding away so that I wouldn't be scolded or yelled at for laughing too loud or making too much noise outside. Also, because of a damaging and manipulative marriage, I felt like I didn't matter because of how I was treated. Something a friend told me really helped me to process this concept in a better way: People will only treat you how you let them treat you. I remember when I first heard this it felt like a smack in the face. I needed to learn how to value myself. #3 I matter and what I have to offer this world also matters.
#2 I am beautiful. This was so hard for me to grasp. It is amazing how much our childhood and adolescence effects our adulthood. Growing up boys didn't line up at the door like some of my friends. It wasn't until I graduated high school and started working that the first guy approached me out of interest. The delusional thought pattern was because of this, that I wasn't attractive. This also lead to the dependent behavior that I needed that male acceptance to feel beautiful. Today, there is more acceptance and recognition for girls and body image and beauty - thank goodness.
Along with the previous affirmation, for the longest time I felt that because I didn't have any romantic relationships in my life that I wasn't loved, or lovable. This was a hurtful lie that I was letting myself believe. The truth is that there are many different forms of love and that everybody is loved. We are loved by our pets, our family, friends, and mostly by God (even if you don't believe in Him, He believes in you).