Using Upheaval to Your Advantage

This year is something of a year of upheaval for myself and other people I know. Has it been for you, too? It is as though life took a sudden turn and we are knocked off balance trying to regain our footing again.

When we get to a point in our life where we think we have it all figured out, where we have it organized in a clear pattern of activities, self-care, spiritual practices and good relationships,  often it just doesn’t stay that way. Life is change and the challenge is in being able to not only cope with that, but to thrive no matter what.

When life throws our ordinary days out to be replaced with drama, crisis, or other undesired events we have a tendency, depending on our constitution, to feel anxiety, depression, or even anger.  This is natural, but it can then bring in more issues such as self-criticism that we aren’t handling it ‘spiritually’ or correctly. Getting back to our ‘higher’ selves is in order.

We often try to push these feelings down and force ourselves to move through our days as if we are unaffected. This compounds the problem, because we can’t clear out the emotional ‘garbage’, the undigested feelings that will keep begging for acknowledgment. This causes insomnia, over-eating or lack of appetite, irritability, lack of focus, etc.

We can develop skills to deal with this and come out the other side more aware, happier, and clearer than we ever were before. This is the process of our personal evolution, and I believe it is happening at a faster pace than ever before. So here are some tips that may help you get yourself back to your highest possible self when facing difficulties:

1)      Check in with your body often, it will tell you when you are becoming over-stressed. You will feel a tightness or tenseness within. Take 3 or 4 deep belly breathes until it eases.

2)      Find space in your day to be able to acknowledge and release your emotions, whether to cry or pummel a pillow, or just sit still in observation, witnessing them leaving your body.

3)      Before you volunteer to assist someone, ask yourself if you have the resources emotionally at that time to be of help. You may not, and this is part of self-care. You need to restore yourself first. Enlist your higher self or angels for guidance.

4)      If guilt is in the mix of your emotional state, it helps to use self-inquiry. Ask yourself if this guilt is warranted.  It most likely isn’t, and logic may replace the guilt, but even if you still believe it is, find compassion for yourself and realize everyone has done similar things at some time in their life. Forgive yourself. I recommend Byron Katie’s “The Work” for self-inquiry.

5)      Get back to your meditation if you are a meditator. This is the fastest way to shift your mental state. If you aren’t a meditator, find a teacher and learn. It is amazingly powerful. One of the dozens of benefits is gaining awareness of the thoughts that are making you feel miserable. You realize they are just thoughts and not reality.

6)      Do something physical every day. Walk, exercise, bike, yoga or some other movement. This not only gets your lymphatic system flushing out the toxins, but loosens the constrictions in your muscles. It also triggers those wonderful endorphins that give us that feeling of wellbeing.

7)      Go outside! Commune with nature. It is very restorative just sitting by a tree or driving out to the country.

8)      Journal. Another effective tool to get those thoughts out of your head and on to a page so you can become more aware. This can actually raise your consciousness.

And remember—This too shall pass. It is temporary.

There are probably many more, and I’ll bet that many of you have some good ideas. Feel free to add them in the comments section. We appreciate your contribution!