When you are distressed, where do you tend to turn?
Do you hide? Do you lash out at others or perhaps take it out on the wall or your dog? Do you turn to food, drugs, to alcohol or porn? There is an outlet for everyone these days, but constructive outlets are few and far between.
Regardless of what you have tended to do in the past, you needn’t go down that road just because it is a well-worn path. You are not an automaton; you have a choice as to how to respond to your circumstances, always.
My preferred mode of handling distress is to find a way to center in gratitude. That may be in “DSFSQ” (doing something for someone quick) or for me it is often found through reading about nobility of character, in either classical or more contemporary literature. I look for inspiration, for an aperture through which I can cast a line of gratitude.
Believe it or not, I even turn to this blog for inspiration when I need it. I search for a term that bubbles to the surface of my mind, like “inspiration,” perseverance,” or “courage” and then skim a post or two for points of light. When I started this blog I wrote daily inspirational and meditative posts for over 5 years, so you’re bound to find something if you look!
If you find yourself in distress, don’t linger. Distress leads to paralysis and paralysis leads to darker things. As a chiropractor friend of mine says, “motion is lotion,” and in the case of living, the spirit of life is ever-moving. If you find yourself stuck, reach out to someone who is in motion, find words that compel you to move, or just focus on gratitude for something, anything through journaling or serving another.
Gratitude restores reverence. Reverence sparks epiphany. Epiphany reveals the way to a renewed sense of calm, prosperity, safety and happiness.