If today is "one of those days"...
Over the last few days I had a conversation with an educator who told me that since school re-started 3 months ago he's had more students confide in him about their concerns with their own mental health than in all his years of work combined.
Yesterday I read an article that stated more than 1 in 10 people with no previous mental health issues have contemplated suicide this year since the beginning of the pandemic.
Last week I had a conversation with a healthcare worker who stated that people who have lived with mental illness before the pandemic are coping much better during this time than people who had no previous diagnosis.
It's a strange time.
And I hope you find a little relief knowing that hard days are common lately, and you are definitely not alone in your feelings of heaviness and uncertainty.
I'm a planner, an intuitive being (who had to re-learn how to recognize my own inner guide this year) and former control-freak, so the "what is coming next" part of this whole pandemic has really thrown me for a loop.
Sometimes we just have to let go of the idea that we can fix and create and manipulate circumstances, and we have to just be.
We have to loosen the reins a little and accept what is rather than what we wanted.
There was a moment of clarity in a podcast that I listened to a few weeks ago that made me stop and let it settle into my cells. It was simply the idea that it's our own expectations that cause our suffering.
We expected it to turn out the way we imagined, and when we didn't get what we wanted, we became unhappy, grief-stricken, stuck, and full of fear or anger or sadness.
If we truly want peace and joy in our life we have to accept that life doesn't always look or feel like what we thought it would.
And that is okay.
Have you heard anyone say recently "when things get back to normal"?
Like we are ever able to go back.
Through any upheaval, change in circumstances, or trauma, we don't get to "go back to normal", we get to move on.
We don't have the ability to go back to a former version of ourselves, naive and innocent, because that version of us no longer exists.
If today is a hard day for you, know this; you won't feel like this forever.
The version of you, now wiser, will continue to grow and evolve closer to who you are supposed to become.
There are many moments during tough days that our minds run away with us and we start to believe that everything is a catastrophe. Like we are going to be cemented here forever. As if things can't change in the blink of an eye, or a random conversation, or one chance meeting.
Tough days suck.
And some days you get carried away with your thoughts, your emotions and you just need to be reminded that you are seen and validated and have a right to feel everything you feel.
And as hard as those tough days can be, feel the feelings, let them pass through you. Don't push them down and deny them.
On especially tough days I often have to remind myself that my emotions can't kill me.
It makes it easier to feel them.
And also that I am also NOT my thoughts and emotions, they are just part of me the same way my fingernails are part of me.
I HAVE emotions and thoughts, but they do not define me.
So if today is a tough day, if you are getting blow after blow, and you're not sure if you can take any more...let me remind you that you are designed for so much more than just this.
You have survived worse, you are greater than your circumstances and you WILL be okay.
Nobody that has done anything amazing with their life has not experienced adversity, grief and turbulence on their path.
While you may have realized that you control very little of what happens around you, you always get the opportunity to tell yourself any story you choose about how it's impacted you. You can rewrite your own monolog any time you choose.
So if today is a tough day I want to remind you that you are more resilient than you give yourself credit for.
You are going to be okay.
You are a source of strength for those around you, a bright light for people who are inspired and motivated by all the versions of you that keep evolving.
If it's a tough day, be soft and gentle, especially with yourself.