A break from life is always recommended. For retrospection, for clarity in our direction of life. For restoration. But when do you know when you’ve taken it a tad bit too far?
I made some drastic changes in my life this year. made me go on a loooong break. Lord knows it’s overdue. I can’t lie to you, at first it felt like I’m back at square one; in everything, including my spiritual and mental health journey. The unwanted visitor has been knocking on my door. That darn dementor sure has a flair for wrong timing. Just when I need the motivation to start all over again, find myself a fresh, knock knock!…. Well, I damn well know who it is and I’m not opening the door this time!
I guess it’s normal to relapse when change is involved. Especially change that requires you to unravel yourself and rebuild yourself again. It’s obviously never easy! I’ve shared from time to time how much my potential scares me. How much I run and find meaningless distractions that eventually contribute to more stress. But this time I want to do it differently.
I’m trying to adopt a culture of just doing things even when I don’t feel like it. You heard me Gracey! Pity party is over! I’ve been forcing myself to follow through with plans, do chores and follow up with my various responsibilities. Even if at that moment my whole spirit is crushed and completely disoriented. It’s what is helping me keep out the unwanted visitor. Where she belongs. outside! Away!
How am I doing this? here are a few tips I can share on how to prevent a relapse.
- Follow through with Plans.
There’s always that voice at the back of my head that keeps tempting me to cancel on plans. Fam! I think I’ve lost enough friendships in my life and lost a lot of opportunities because of that God-forsaken voice. So I’ve decided to implement the words of Dan Wieden and Just do it! Wake up even when you feel like you’d rather be in a dream, other than reality. Do the dishes at that very moment rather than later. Write even if the words won’t come out. Just do it, whatever the outcome! That’s what being a warrior is about.
2. Listen to the voices in your head.
I first read of this concept in the best seller, “Eat Pray and Love” by Elizabeth Gilbert. Sometimes we need to sit with ourselves and really listen to how we feel. Listen to each gutting and negative thought in your head and embrace it with love. Like, in the case of the mean bully at school, sometimes all those voices need is a little love so as to give you peace.
3. Note the triggers.
Note your triggers and pull a Forest Gump on them; run!!! Don’t drive yourself into temptation and the Lord shall surely deliver you from evil. Avoiding situations that act as triggers to our malady, helps us gain more control over the situation. So for me, anything that makes me feel like I’ll be involved in an emotional rollercoaster, is a no! For me!
4. Be easy on yourself.
The world is already having a go at you. Do yourself a favour and be your own cheerleader. So you didn’t get out of bed this morning, huh?! Well, tomorrow is another day darling. Oh! You had an emotional outburst? Honey, you’re not made of stone, It’s okay. I’ve learnt to pat myself on the back for even the most insignificant things! As long as I took a step forward today, I refuse to beat myself up, emotionally, just because I took ten steps back yesterday.
5. Embrace solitude; be right with your spirit and be right with God.
Loneliness is the poverty of self; solitude is the richness of self. Whenever I’m alone and feel a dire need to be around others, I challenge myself to stay on my own. To really listen to the emergency my soul is calling out for. Because most of the time I know it’s something I’m afraid to deal with and I know the more I give myself a pass and evade it, It will only welcome mental unrest and addictions. I’ve learnt to put my foot down and deal with stuff as they’re happening. Prevents future stress.
Never forget too pray, even if you feel like you don’t know how to anymore. I’ve been there, done that. Almost publishing a book on it! Sometimes I genuinely feel so far away from God. Reading or seeing anything spiritual or religious literally makes me sick to my stomach. I feel ashamed for this most times. But I’m trying to practise talking to God. Even when I don’t know what to say, I literally start the prayer by saying, “God, I honestly don’t know what to say” then I ironically move ahead to just blurt out everything in my head. And when I honestly try and can’t, I tag in my prayer warriors to pray for me, until I get back on track. This is because my distance from God is always a red flag for me. A storm brewing in the horizon. So I check myself before I give it room to gain form and destroy me.
So basically, I’m just saying…These streets haven’t been easy, son! But I’m patting myself on the back for the steps ( even though, infant-like) I’m taking and trying to take.
I’m sorry if my post is a bit incomprehensible and all over the place. I’m struggling to write. Can you tell? I’m just trying to beat that damn lethargy! A.K.A writer’s bock. It feels good to be back honestly. I’ll do my damn best to make it as consistent as possible.
Let’s do this!
With love and light,