Friday, July 11, 2008

OFG III: I am healing

Have you ever noticed how difficult it can be to come to terms with a life event turning out differently than you had imagined it? There are all kinds of repercussions, and people suffer from one or more symptoms depending upon how it hit them.

People get angry, grow very depressed, exhibit disbelief and refuse to accept what has happened, may withdraw into themselves and refuse human interaction, the list goes on and on.

The problem actually begins before the life event arrives. It is our desire to create, in our heads, exactly how the event should go. This creates the fertile environment within which the mismatch of our notion and reality can occur easily.

So, first advice today: stop it. It's perfectly alright to fantasize about how your wedding day may go, or the job interview for your dream job, or the counseling session with the estranged spouse which you hope will lead to recovery of what was once a great relationship. That part is fine. But when you finish with your fantasy, let it go. If you wish to revisit it again, that's fine, too. Same advice: when you are done, let it go.

Ideally, you will walk into that life event with an open mind, a presence in that moment in your life which allows you to fully enjoy it, and the flexibility to go with the flow as the event unfolds. If you are able to handle that way of living your life, you can stop here. You are done. Please come back for the graduate course when I reach your level of advanced and enlightened living!

For the rest of us, we can reach for that ideal, and we will fall short much of the time. For us, there is the rest of the story, which is how to handle the aftermath.

You did your best to let go of preconceptions, but you still had very strong emotional attachments tying you to a particular outcome, and you did not get the outcome you were hoping for.

You are now experiencing one or more of the symptoms I described at the beginning. Now what?

First of all, allow those feelings to be fully felt. If you are angry, go somewhere private and yell till your throat hurts or punch a pillow or use a tennis racket to smack couch cushions (this one works! I have done it). If you are really down about it, let the gusher loose and cry an ocean. Tell your best buddy all about it, holding nothing back about how badly you feel.

If you have a tremendous urge to withdraw, do so! Be alone and sit with the feelings which are pushing everyone away for now.

Whatever you are doing which allows your feelings full expression, keep this thought in mind: I am healing. I am healing. I am healing. As other thoughts struggle to gain control, just return to "I am healing." Yes, it hurts. And, you are healing.

You are a precious person and are an integral part of this reality, so we need you to heal, to feel better about yourself, and to honor yourself as the gift you are to everyone else.

Now, it is your turn: now what?


Jane said...

Great words today Rick! Life is an ongoing progress in work. Too many people get caught up with the control of their path. When adversity hits, they refuse to accept a different version of the situation.

All we can do every day is just live it, heal, laugh, cry, try and try a little more.

I am healing.

Olivia said...

I am taking these words in today, Rick. Peace, O

Rick Hamrick said...

Jane--for one so young, you are so wise. (grinning...age is all about frame of reference, you know)

O--thanks for so consistently hearing what I have to say. Or, in this case, reading what I have to write. I wish you the peace you offer me, and in a double helping!