Accepting each moment as it comes

Written by Amie on December 29, 2012 – 3:29 am -

 Feeling good happens in each moment, it isn’t something that happens in the future

I want to write about this because I think it may help at least one person. It is another one of those things that I really didn’t understand for quite a few years. I read so many books talking about staying present, or being “in the moment”. I thought I understood what that meant. I found out that I really didn’t know how to put it into practice. I was still too much “in my head”. When you are in your head, it is almost impossible to be in the moment. I would find myself thinking about the future when my depression would be all better. Little did I know, thinking about this was a distraction from being where I was right in that moment. I was “in the future” in my mind, so there was no way to be fully in the moment. Feeling good happens in each moment, it isn’t something that happens in the future. Distractions keep us from feeling. Thinking too much keeps us from really being with how we feel in any given moment. In truth, all situations are neutral. It is when we add our stories, our commentary to a situation that makes it into something other than neutral. (This would be a different conversation if a person is in physical danger. Thinking needs to happen so as to keep a person safe) When we start labeling a situation, we are immediately taken out of the moment, which means we are not present.

this shuts down the human process

We have been conditioned to think too much. We have been conditioned to label every single thing that happens to us. For most people, it is nearly impossible to allow emotions to flow freely through their body and just feel. This is the reason so many people feel so down and depressed. All of those unexpressed emotions are stuck in the body. Trapped, causing anxiety and depression. For many people, the minute an emotion starts in the body, they shut it down. They distract themselves with tasks or thoughts about things that need to get done or reasons why they “shouldn’t” feel the way they feel. This shuts down the human process. We are emotional beings. However, we have evolved into humans who stuff their emotions and who feel bad about their emotions. We have been conditioned to ignore our emotions and sensations, therefore taking us away from accepting what “is” in each moment. A moment is just a moment, it is the thoughts about the moment that make us feel miserable. I am not saying there is no such thing as a sad event or a time to feel discouraged or frustrated etc….but staying with the labels and thoughts about the situation  create a distraction so that your true feelings about the moment can’t be processed. Emotions are truly sensations in the body. The next time you feel angry or sad, see if you can notice your body. When I feel angry, I feel my stomach tighten, I feel my legs start shaking if I am really angry, etc. If we can allow ourselves to just feel these sensations without adding a story about them, they will flow through the body, which allows us to be in a place to process our options, if an action needs to be taken.

I continued to sit with my uncomfortable feelings

I will give some examples of what I mean, hoping that it will help you understand what I am talking about. One example would be when I sat down to meditate the other day. I sat down, and about two seconds after I sat down my mind said “ugh, I really don’t want to do this, I don’t feel like sitting here, what is going on, my mind is racing….” So, I could have distracted myself by getting back up and cleaning the kitchen instead. Instead, I continued to sit with my uncomfortable feelings. I told myself,” gosh, I really don’t want to sit here”, and then I just let that thought be there instead of trying to “fix it” or run away from it. In the past when I felt this way, I would have said, “gosh,what is going on here. yesterday I was able to sit in silence, why not today?” And my mind would have been off to the races so to speak. My mind would have stayed focused on these thoughts, and I would have been sitting there analyzing why I didn’t feel like meditating. So, it is more of an observation. It is like saying, “hmmm, my legs are wiggling around, I am uncomfortable, hmmm….” and then just be with that. No stories, no judging, no analyzing, no trying to find a solution.

you get closer to your truth

Once I learned to just be with what comes, things that were labeled as “problems” are no longer problems. They are just situations, they are neutral. It really is about learning a new way of being. Awareness is key. Watching your thoughts, and then watching the progression of those thoughts. Most people with severe depression are stuck in an endless loop in their mind. I remember a time when I didn’t even recognize that. I had no idea how hard I was on myself. Becoming aware of my thoughts was the beginning of my healing journey. Once I became aware, I was able to begin the process of changing it. The more I was able to stay in the moment and watch my thoughts, the more “awake” I became. I began to see that most of the thoughts going through my head had nothing to do with the present moment. They were either about the past or about the future. Again, thinking about the past or the future is a distraction from how you feel in the moment. One very important detail, however, is that the more you become aware of each moment, you will start to see things about your life that need to be processed and released from your body. Things that happened in the past that you were not able to feel or process for various reasons. I needed help with this. I needed a therapist to help guide me along the path. Doing this does not mean living in the past or  staying out of the present moment. When things from our past affect our present, they need to be processed and released. Processing feelings that come up is very healthy, and each time you do this , you get closer to your truth. Staying in the moment is not always easy. It takes a lot of practice. Most of us have spent our whole lives doing everything except living in the moment. So, be very gentle on yourself as you learn this new way of being. Soon it will start to feel natural. You get as many do-overs as you need.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Posted in Awareness, Depression, healing from depression, Help with depression, Meditation, Self hate | 1 Comment »

Letting go of depression and opening to love

Written by Amie on November 2, 2011 – 1:11 am -

Being depressed is like being in prison

Wow! I was just watching Oprah’s new Life Class show, and I sobbed tears of joy throughout the whole thing. I am so touched right now. I feel so alive with hope and love, it is overwhelming. In a really hopeful beautiful way. Please keep reading, I won’t talk just about the show the whole post here. The show was about how animals touch our lives and how they give pure unconditional love. There is a program in some prisons called Puppies Behind Bars, and this is what touched me so deeply. Let’s see if I can put it into words. My body is pretty overwhelmed with feelings of love right now. When I watched these men taking care of the puppies, my stream of tears started. I could *feel* the weight of the world being lifted from them. These men felt unconditional love for the first time ever in their lives. It was painfully sad on some level, but so beautiful on a much deeper level. I felt a connection with these men. I realized how depression really imprisons a person. I was a prisoner of myself for years. I do realize that being incarcerated has so many other challenges. I don’t want it to sound as though I am minimizing this.

The minute you decide to pay attention to your thoughts and beliefs, and start *questioning* them is the minute the bars start to crumble 

The men in the show were physically imprisoned, or so it seems. I believe they are also emotionally, spiritually, and mentally imprisoned. This is exactly the same for people suffering with depression. Depression causes a person to be stuck on all levels. Depression is caused by the suppression of one’s authentic self. We become numb on all levels because we are stuck in the thoughts and beliefs we were conditioned to believe. Our authentic selves are fighting against what we have been taught. Each time our authentic truth tries to show itself, the messages we have been conditioned to believe convince us that this authentic self is wrong or bad. So, back to being stuck. It is a continuous fight. The more the thoughts and beliefs are believed, the stronger the “bars” become. BUT, these bars can be knocked down. The minute you decide to pay attention to your thoughts and beliefs, and start *questioning* them, is the minute the bars start to crumble. *You* are in control of your prison, I promise you.

 They have never known what it is like to be loved for exactly who they are. Their true selves have been conditioned out of them

Watching this show brought up so many emotions for me. Like I said earlier, I was sobbing while watching it. It hit me on such a deep level. I could see the humanness of each of these men. I could clearly see what I have always felt. My belief is that people end up in prison because they have never felt love, they have never been really *seen*, they have not been unconditionally loved, they have never known what it is like to be loved for exactly who they are. Their true selves have been conditioned out of them. They are acting out of fear and desperation. They have given up on the hope that they can ever feel better or ever be loved. They are convinced that they are not worth anything and that nobody cares about them. Therefore, they live to survive. In any way they can. Sound familiar? Anyone suffering from depression probably feels all of these things as well. I know I did.

This is the reason you feel self hatred. This is the reason you feel hopeless. This is the reason you feel worthless.

I understand that everyone has their own journey. I know from my own experience that we are exactly where we should be on our journey. I am in a place now that I know *for sure* that each of us has unconditional love inside us at all times. Depression can be healed when we make the decision to become aware of what we are telling ourselves. Every single person is capable of healing. I know this  deep inside. At the core of every one of us is love. By questioning and changing what we believe we get closer and closer to our authentic selves. Every time you allow yourself to notice your thoughts or beliefs, question them, and then acknowledge what you really believe or feel, you get closer to your truth. The truth is *you are loved* unconditionally, and that you deserve to be full of love. The only reason you don’t know this right now is because the messages you have been taught and told to believe are blocking this truth. This is the reason you feel self hatred. This is the reason you feel hopeless. This is the reason you feel worthless. These are *all* thoughts!!! They are NOT true, I promise you. they may feel true deep in your body. That is *only* because you have had them in there for a long time. That is the only reason!!! Stop believing your thoughts. Begin right now by noticing what you tell yourself. Once you start doing this, you will become more present in yourself, which will lead you to being strong enough to process some of your emotions. This leads to healing…..and ultimately to self-love. I don’t even know you, but I *know* for a fact that I love you.

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