Walk Away From The Flames: Stop Burning Yourself

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Why is it that we as people tend to want what’s bad for us? Is it human nature? Is it sin nature? What is it? Whether it be relationships that we KNOW are absolutely destructive and unhealthy… Or environments that are toxic or overly tempting… Or whether it’s gorging ourselves on food that we know is bad for us and we’ll pay for it later…. Or wanting what is forbidden, what is not ours? What is it?

Remember in high school or college, there was that guy or that girl who was pretty good looking, smart, funny, charming… but wasn’t the “bad” boy or the “hot to trot” girl? What about them? Why do we tend to ignore those who could be potentially good, solid, stable people and instead lust for danger, adventure, the ‘high’? But, going for the forbidden is exciting, right?! It’s thrilling! It’s titillating! Now, to clarify, I’m not referring to going for your dreams or taking good risks to reach your goals. That is different. Here, I’m talking about unhealthy choices, about compromising in the wrong direction, about ‘selling your soul’, so to speak. I’m talking about potentially putting ourselves in harm’s way just for the thrill or just to get that ‘thing’ or that ‘person’ or that ‘high’ that we know deep down inside is no good for us.

Are we just thrill seeking? Or are we self-punishing? Is it that somewhere deep in our inmost being we feel we don’t deserve what is good and healthy and stable, etc.? Did something happen to us in our lives a loooong time ago or continuously throughout our lives that warped our perception of what is good vs. bad, healthy vs. unhealthy? Did someone once tell us that we were “less than” or “no good” and that we deserved bad things and we believed it? Were the messages subliminal? Were you somehow made to believe by life, by people, by circumstance that there is nothing you can do to deserve true happiness, so you might as well just ‘flip the bird’ at the world and live with reckless abandon, regardless of the consequences?

Or are you by all appearances happy, but, deep inside there is secretly a void? Yes, outwardly you’re well liked, you are successful in your career, you have a great family, but, secretly you’re hooked on prescription drugs or pain killers? Or nobody would suspect that hidden all around your house are bottles and vials of alcohol because you feel you cannot cope without it because it kills the numbs the unresolved pain you feel inside. Perhaps, although you’re married or committed to a great person, you’ve allowed yourself to be in ‘sabotage mode’ because somewhere along the line you were told “nothing good ever lasts”… so you go ahead and flirt with that coworker and flirting progresses to something more serious. You know it’s wrong, but, you keep telling yourself you don’t deserve happiness anyway. Maybe you’ve always gone after the “players” because they were good looking and exciting, yet you ignore ALL of the obvious signs that he/she is using and cheating on you with multiple people, because you want to be loved… But you went for the “player” because deep inside you didn’t feel like you deserved any better. After all, what ‘good’ happens in life? Or perhaps life has become so bad, that you seek your refuge in food. Food comforts. Food tastes good. Food doesn’t judge you. Food is always there. Food doesn’t disappoint you. But, as a result you pack on the pounds and before you realize it you’ve come to a place physically where you are no longer healthy… and you’re not quite sure how to get back.

Why do we do these things to ourselves? What prohibits us from desiring what is healthy and good? Or what drives us to self-sabotage mode or gets us off track?
Why do we keep ourselves in this cycle? If we keep getting burned, why do we keep going back to touch the flames?

I suspect there are varying reasons as there are varying solutions. But, my heartfelt plea to you if I’ve said something that has spoken to you is this:
YOU ARE LOVED. YOU ARE LOVEABLE. YOU DESERVE TO BE HEALTHY AND HAPPY. Stop punishing yourself. Get the help you need to get yourself on the right path. If you need professional help, get it! If the first professional person doesn’t ‘click’ with you, ask around and get GOOD recommendations to find another. But get the help. If this is just a matter of ‘waking up’ to realize where you are, I hope and pray that this small blog post could serve as that wake up call. Stop returning to what is harmful and start moving toward what is healthy. The trouble is that many times, these thought-patterns and behavior-patterns are so deeply ingrained in us that it will likely take some skilled professional counseling to help us rewire our thinking to get to a healthy state. And for addictions of any kind, most definitely professional help is needed and that is absolutely NOTHING to be ashamed of. Taking care of yourself is nothing to be ashamed of. Go for it! Get the help. And I hope that through your journey you come to the place that you will do what is healthy and good for you for your future.

God bless.

© 2014 KD Corner “Walk Away From the Flames: Stop Burning Yourself”

image from Google images

Sending You Hugs

Fair warning. This post is unfiltered and random. But I hope if you can relate to any of it, you end up encouraged.

I’m sad today.
And I’m thinking that’s … okay.

Things aren’t quite the way I want them to be.
But I recognize the blessings in the midst of tough times.
I’m waiting for the fruition of some promises from God…
But they’ve not yet come to pass.
Some things are just hard.
I tend to feel sorry for myself sometimes,
And as someone wise once told me…that’s okay.
We tend to stifle our true feelings and/or let others tell us how we should feel.
Not cool.
We should be allowed to work through our feelings. Allowed to move through them to the other side of the pain, like a beautiful dance sequence.
We should be allowed to feel what we’re feeling at the moment without having to feel guilty or ‘not Christian enough’ for feeling it. It’s okay.
But, maybe you struggle with deeper things (severe depression or perhaps some very real disorders or illnesses). Remember, that doesn’t make you any less human or make your feelings less valid. You may need some extra help working your feelings out. Guess what? That’s okay. Do what’s healthy for YOU.

I often make it my mission to reach out to others when I’m feeling down.
I figure if I can encourage someone else, then I’ve helped someone and that makes me feel good.
Listen, if you’re having a tough time in general, get whatever help you need to get that is healthy for you, not harmful.
If you don’t know who to reach out to, maybe I or other folks on wordpress can help you figure it out.
YOU are beautiful.
YOU are more than your circumstances.
And GOD loves you infinitely, even if you can’t feel it at the moment.
Sometimes when we’re in a dark place, it’s hard to see the light.
But I promise you, if you pay attention, you will notice a glimmer of light each day.
However, if you feel like darkness is swallowing you, please, please get some help.
You are worth saving. You’re worth loving. You’re worth living. You’re beautiful, no matter what anyone says.

©2014 “Sending You Hugs” KD Corner / KD

Being Human

Isn’t being human fun? Haha. I know some of you rolled your eyes…and others laughed. Define “fun” you say. Well, let’s just say that being human is definitely an adventure. We are unique and complex beings.  We are able to experience the world physically and emotionally.  We’re able to interact with others and express thoughts, ideas and feelings in various formats.  We’re able to create things.  It’s really quite amazing! What’s not fun about being human?  Disappointments, death, hurt/pain, sadness.  But, without the yucky parts of life, it’s harder to truly appreciate when things are really good.  When something good happens, you feel joy, relief, elation, etc.  Whether  you realize it or not, you mentally compare the good moment/experience/event to the bad one(s), and you’re extra thankful for the good.  Life is full of challenges.  Situations are challenging.  People are challenging.  Sometimes there are misunderstandings. Sometimes there is blatant harm.  But, whatever you’re going through or whatever you’ve been through, please oh please, allow it to make you better, stronger, more patient, more loving, more COMPASSIONATE, a better listener, a better giver, etc.  Bless others. 
 
To inspire you, I recently saw Alicia Keys perform a song on Katie Couric’s daytime talk show (I couldn’t find this clip but I found another performance).  The song is called “Brand New Me”.  It’s on  her new album “Girl On Fire”.  The song stopped me in my tracks.  This melancholy melody blossomed into a chorus of strength.  It seems to be about coming out of an unhealthy relationship, but, can be related to other things as well.  Please take the time to read the lyrics below and listen to the song here –> “BRAND NEW ME” (note: She does a piano solo at beginning.  If you want to skip this, the singing starts at approximately 2:50 minutes)
 
Brand New Me – by Alicia Keys
 
It’s been a while, I’m not who I was before
You look surprised, your words don’t burn me anymore
Been meaning to tell you, but I guess it’s clear to see
Don’t be mad, it’s just the brand new kind of me
Can’t be bad, I found a brand new kind of free
 
Careful with your ego, he’s the one that we should blame
Had to grab my heart back
God know something had to change
I thought that you’d be happy
I found the one thing I need, why you mad
It’s just the brand new kind of me
 
It took a long long time to get here
It took a brave, brave girl to try
It took one too many excuses, one too many lies
Don’t be surprised, don’t be surprised
If I talk a little louder
If I speak up when you’re wrong
If I walk a little taller
I’ve been on to you too long
If you noticed that I’m different
Don’t take it personally
Don’t be mad, it’s just the brand new kind of me
And it ain’t bad, I found a brand new kind of free
 
Oh, it took a long long road to get here
It took a brave brave girl to try
I’ve taken one too many excuses, one too many lies
Don’t be surprised, oh see you look surprised
Hey, if you were a friend, you want to get know me again
If you were worth a while
You’d be happy to see me smile
I’m not expecting sorry
I’m too busy finding myself
I got this
I found me, I found me, yeah
I don’t need your opinion
I’m not waiting for your ok
I’ll never be perfect, but at least now i’m brave
Now, my heart is open
And I can finally breathe
Don’t be mad, it’s just the brand new kind of free
That ain’t bad, I found a brand new kind of me
Don’t be mad, it’s a brand new time for me, yeah
 
Toodles ♥
 
 Image courtesy of stockimages / FreeDigitalPhotos.net
 
© “Being Human” by KD Corner 2012

Life

I felt deeply impressed to write this tonight. I know many people struggle with wanting to give up on life and I want to be a voice for them. And I want to give hope to those who have none.  Use your gift to help, bless, encourage others.  This ‘poem’ is called “Life”.

Don’t give up…on life
Hope…dried up like parched land
Pain…so deeply piercing vibrates through my soul
Patience…gone
Anger…rising and falling
Sobs…shaking my body uncontrollably
Numb
Glassy eyed
Should I end it? My life?
Would it ease the pain?
But…my family, my friends
I cannot leave them
Thoughts swirling
Pain hits me in waves
I hear my name
My thoughts interjected by Him
Calling my name
Again and again
Telling me not to give up
Telling me over and over
That I’m
Not alone
I’m not…alone.
But I’m tired.
“Carry me, Lord,” I say
I pray a quick prayer
The darkness begins to lift
But what can I do?
I will write
I will write and tell the story to others
So that they… don’t give up
If through my pain, I can help someone else
Then I have won.

© KD Corner 2012, “Life”

Image courtesy of sattva / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Feelings

Feelings.  Why are we so afraid of them? Is it because they’re unpredictable and sometimes uncontrollable or uncomfortable?  Could be.

It seems that society seems to have the notion that any “bad” feelings are to be hushed, squashed, hidden, gotten rid of quickly. But who came up with the notion that we are to be “happy” 100% of the time?

Who says that to show feeling means you’re weak? Not so. To show your real emotions sometimes takes great courage. Of course, with everything, BALANCE. I’m not advocating being run away with your feelings and living in emotional upheaval all of the time. I’m saying that in life there are seasons. Literal seasons, such as fall, winter, spring, summer. There are cycles, such as day turning to night, turning to day again. Nature is full of seasons and cycles. Why wouldn’t WE go through them as well. Life is a continuous cycle of highs and lows. I like to refer to the ocean tide because it’s such a good example. The tide ebbs and flows. We have to learn to FLOW with life. Our emotions cycle and flow. It’s OK to be sad sometimes or angry or disappointed. Not that you let that take over your whole life and not that you use that as an excuse to harm someone else. No, no. But, you must let yourself cycle through your feelings. Let yourself flow through them.

For instance, if you’ve been through major life changes (death, a break-up, separation or divorce, or perhaps a child moving away from home, physical struggles and the like) you are ALLOWED to feel sad some days. Yes, well-meaning people will always tell you to “cheer up” or “get over it”, or “move on”. But, no. Let yourself cycle through those feelings at your own pace. If you feel sad, let yourself feel sad. If you’re angry about something, take time to figure out what’s behind the anger. Journal about your feelings. Talk to a trusted friend who won’t judge you. Pray. Find a good counselor or mentor to help you work through it. There’s no shame in it. Find what works for you.

Perhaps in some cases, action will be required. For instance, if there is a situation where you are angry because you were treated unfairly, or there is a discrepancy at work, etc. you may need to take proper and cautious steps to resolve whatever the issue may be.  Never be a vigilante.  If you’re dealing with a work or legal issue, proper protocol must be followed. First, try to figure out what the root of your anger is before trying to resolve it.  Sometimes your anger may be rooted in your perception based on a past experiences or personality types.  If you recognize this to be the case, take a fresh look at the person or situation that upset you.  Look with new eyes and see if that person or situation offended you because it reminded you of someone/something else.  Sometimes our perception of another person’s intentions can be influenced by our past. So, take stock of all factors. And if you need assistance to resolve any issue, then ask. Again, nothing to be ashamed of.

And the same idea for other areas that may cause you to feel down, such as daily stress, family issues, or maybe you just had a bad day. It’s okay. Take time when you can be alone to work through it. You’ll know what works best for you.  Try taking a walk in the park or neighborhood, do some exercise, journal, pray, or express yourself through art, poetry or song.  These things may aid in you getting out some negative energy and stress and help you to gain some clarity regarding your feelings.

Some say not to have “pity parties”. But, I disagree. Have your pity party (just don’t make it a never-ending party) :).  Get your feelings out in a healthy way and keep on moving forward. Once you let yourself work THROUGH your feelings you will eventually get back around to the other side of the cycle. Think of it like a pendulum. Our lives are always in motion and always swinging from happiness to sadness, or good day to bad day and everything in between. That’s life. Every day is not “fun” or “happy”, but you can learn to deal with your feelings in an effective way. Stuffing them down or ignoring them only causes them to surface later in other ways…usually unhealthy ones.

Lastly, if you suffer from clinical depression or have other mental health struggles, then never ever be ashamed to get professional help. It doesn’t mean you’re crazy. There is therapy and there are medications that can be prescribed to help you obtain and maintain some balance. Do your homework and have someone you trust to help you with this process. The beautiful thing about living in this day and time is that there are a multitude of resources available to help people in whatever state they’re in & help them to find balance.

God bless you.
Toodles ♥

Image: FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Dealing With Grief

We all experience loss in life.  It can range from experiencing the death of a loved one, to the death of a relationship/friendship, or ‘death’ of a certain season in life (ex. job loss, a child growing up and leaving, etc.). And because of experiencing loss, whether the loss is expected or unexpected, we go through stages of grief.  It’s completely normal.  While experiencing the grief process, you may sometimes feel as though you’ve gone “loopy”.  But if you become knowledgeable (or remind yourself) of the stages of the grief cycle, then it tends to be easier to recognize which stage you’re in and helps you to realize that what you’re going through is okay. 

Sometimes when loss happens, well-meaning family or friends will tell you to “get over it” or “get on with life” or “you shouldn’t still feel that”.  They really do mean well.  They just want you to “snap out of it” and get back to your “normal” self.  The trouble is, when loss happens, you don’t go back to how you were before the incident.  But, you create a “new normal” that takes into account your experience of loss.  Yes, there are extremes on both sides. People can “stuff” grief down inside and decide to never fully deal with it.  Or sometimes people can stay stuck in a lifetime of misery, never allowing themselves to fully go through their cycle of grief and come out on the other side of it. 

Let’s briefly go through the stages of grief here:

  1. Denial
  2. Anger
  3. Bargaining
  4. Depression
  5. Acceptance

The important thing to know is that it does NOT always happen in linear order.  You may not go through certain stages. Or you may experiences some stages simultaneously.  Or you may even circle back around to certain stages you already have been through. But, let yourself go through the stages at your own pace.  Also, if you need to, reach out to certain family or friends who will be supportive as you go through this process, and not try to rush you through it.  You may also choose to seek out a professional counselor. That is nothing to be ashamed of.  Take your time to find the right counselor for you.  You may also try talking about things with your family doctor.

Please visit this link which goes through each stage of grief in-depth.  Take the time to really read through and understand each stage.  Link:  http://grief.com/the-five-stages-of-grief/ .

One last thing…IF you are experiencing grief and feel at all suicidal please DO NOT end your life!  You are meant to be here.  You are beautiful and special and precious & God loves you!!!  You matter to me!  Please call the suicide hotline so that you can talk to someone to help you through this.  They have resources that will help you with your individual situation.  
SUICIDE HOTLINE: 1-800-273-8255.  

Sidebar: I even heard on the radio the other day that for soldiers suffering from PTSD and battle depression and/or suicidal thoughts consistently, there are breakthrough procedures and medications available.  But you don’t have to be suffering from PTSD.  You can any person who suffers from depression.  Depression is a very real thing that people go through and you don’t have to feel ashamed. For help, encouragement, information & suggestions please listen to this radio show. Here’s the link to the radio show: http://www.moodyradio.org/radioplayer.aspx?episode=91779&hour=2  (the show is a Christian show, but, even if you’re not a Christian don’t let that deter you from listening.)  There is LOTS of good information shared that will help you with depression and bipolar disorder and other areas.  Also if you would like to visit the radio guest’s website, it is here:  http://drlindamintle.com/?s=depression .

God bless you! ♥

Image: FreeDigitalPhotos.net