Compassionate words from others are necessary parts of our emotional health, but what we believe is most powerful. Recognizing the lies we are telling ourselves + talking back to them is an important skill.
This space has offered me room to form my thoughts, recognize truths, voice hope + intention. A journal offers the same space to put thoughts into words + allows those words to form a path...winding as it needs or wants...toward...better? deeper? recognition? Giving voice to thoughts in warm conversation can also work in this way.
I've come to believe that giving form to thought can be important, although is not always necessary. Surrendering to an immersion in a sort of formless grief or love + riding the wave might be process enough at times. Some feelings that seem to run away without permission, however may benefit from some introspection + putting those feelings into words. Feelings of unworthiness or sadness or loneliness or anger or frustration can often benefit from labelling + a little exploration.
As mamas of toddlers, we offer a labelling of feelings to our lovelies..."I understand that you are feeling...sad, angry, scared." We talk them through their feelings toward appropriate behavior, coping mechanisms, corrections. Through love + patience, we can often guide our young ones all the way through to resolution + hugs.
What kindness it is to take the time to offer ourselves a little patient thought + reflection on what makes us feel sad, angry, scared...insecure, unworthy, irritable, anxious, doubt, quiet...
Once we can label our feelings, we can explore what led us to them...circumstances, situations, words from others, deeply held beliefs about ourselves or the way we believe things are... And then we can think about how we could influence some of those factors. Action is often needed...but self-talk is often its necessary companion.
A superficial issue of mine that has affected me in deeper ways over the years has to do with trying to appreciate my body- newly appearing moles, skin that loses elasticity every day, soft stomach, thin hair and all. I'm trying to eat less + exercise every day. But I'm also trying to look in the mirror + not hate what I see day by day...because age + sadness + invisibleness + loss of purpose + loneliness are coming for me every day. Some of us have wonderful support systems + expressive loved ones. Some of us feel alone in this fight. Either way we might need to tell ourselves that we have grown babies in these soft stomachs...that our bodies are curvy + strong + capable of loving well...that we like how we look in the underwear we choose...that we are worthy of love...that we have sucked the sun into our skin + the wind into our lungs...that we are wild + alive.
It's a lot easier to die than it is to live...and I'm still fighting.
My desire is for your health + thriving. As always, these are just my thoughts + not a substitute for professional mental health care. Please be kind to yourself + ask for help, if you think it might be helpful.