You Just Being You

I came across this amazing video from the Angel Academy series.  In it, Jnana Deviprema speaks about being free of the fear of judgment and just being you.  Many things that he says in this video really strike a chord with me but one of the biggest is how you will help others be themselves when they see you being yourself.  Take a look.

I don’t get millions of of hits on this blog.  I don’t have thousands of followers.  I have, however, had several people who have reached out to me whether it be in the comments, referencing my posts on other sites or emailing me directly who have told me that they don’t want to hide their struggles anymore.  They want to be open and honest and talk freely about them.  That has been the biggest driving force in me continuing to write.

I try to speak candidly about my anxiety, ADHD, my emotions…  I don’t want people to think it’s something that I complain about or that is a stigma.  I want to talk about these things in such a way where others and myself can look back and say “hey, it’s ok to struggle.”  We all have struggles in this world.  I’ve never met anyone who a) didn’t struggle or b) was completely normal.

I once heard Donald Trump talk about how his life wasn’t easy.  He said from the minute he wakes up till the minute he goes to be he is fighting.  Sure, he’s got millions of dollars, a helicopter that flies him to his private jet and owns his own golf courses to play on on his days off.  All of that takes a lot of time to run.  On top of it, he said, he has to deal with things like lawsuits. Sounds like his life is anything but easy.

Today I encourage you to reach out to people and let them know that you too have struggles.  Speak candidly about it, talk about how you’ve, maybe, made yourself look silly at times.  Own it, because you’ve earned it.  Share what you’ve learned from it and embrace the camaraderie the experience of sharing that will give you.

Be well.  Be positive.


Going With The Flow of Life

To force life, is to live with anxiety.  I’ve lived with it too long.  It has put gray hairs on my head.  Was I even able to force it or was it all just a mental thing?  In reality, life can’t be forced.  I was simply trying to move that large rock and failing as it sat there basking in the sun happy as can be.  Have you ever tried to make a river flow faster?  It would be very difficult to do so but if you tried, I’m sure that the water would become displaced and overflow the banks.  So why not just let the river flow naturally?

My anxiety has come from years of trying to micromanage my life and being afraid of the outcome.  God has a purpose and he wants good to happen in our lives.  So why not trust him and know that good things come when we let them?  Do I profess to know better than God?  Absolutely not.

There is s saying in the 12 step recovery programs that says, “Let go and let God.”  It is powerful advice if you know how to put it in to practice.  While I’ve never experienced drug or alcohol addiction myself, I’ve had friends who have had these types of challenges in the past.  In order to better understand them, I attended some open AA and ALANON meetings.  What they teach at these meetings should be taught everywhere.  In one word, they teach “serenity”.

Letting go is such a big part of the addiction recovery process.  In anxiety, holding on is the key cause.  Wondering what would happen if… all the time causes me to be afraid.  If I let go of these thoughts and allow life to happen as it will and trust that everything will be ok then there is nothing to feel anxious about.

Here’s an example:  I’m on my way to the grocery store and I’m worried that the cashier wont be friendly.  Yes, I worry about this.  What if this person is flat out rude to me?  How often does it happen that a cashier is rude?  Very seldom.  How have their actions hurt me in the past?  Not at all other than what I cause to happen in my own emotions.  The fact is that their words have no power over me unless I cause them to.  I’m not physically harmed and maybe they are having an exceptionally bad day.  I should maintain my happiness and go about the rest of my day.

I realize my post today is a lot of thoughts just thrown together.  It just helps me to see everything visually.  Maybe there is something that you can take from it in your own journey.

Be well.  Be positive.

Lightening My Mental Load Online

My computer was in for service again and that’s why I haven’t posted in a while.  Over the past couple of years I’ve had a lot of bad luck with computers.  Hopefully, with the replacement of pretty much everything inside of this one, my troubles are behind me.

I’ve been trying to evaluate what causes me stress and anxiety.  A lot of it is things that shouldn’t bother me, things that most people do on a daily basis like talking on the phone or grocery shopping.  One thing that I get a little too emotionally involved in is politics.  For me, politics is a lot like college football for other people.  I wave my little flag and cheer for my favorite players.  For some, however, it’s a great source of anger.

This past year, and even going back to the last presidential election, I’ve lost a few friends who took many of the things I said personally.  If I supported a conservative who wasn’t in favor of, say, minimum wage increases, then they “can’t even begin to understand” why I would support him.  Even if I tried to explain it was related to something else.

My friends are very important to me.  Maybe I hang on to them too hard.  I get very sad when I find that a close friend is avoiding me.  Whether it be in person or on Facebook, it really affects me.  I’ve had friends for 20 years who suddenly unfriend me on Facebook and wont speak to me in real life because of some politician.  I decided it wasn’t worth it anymore.

It wasn’t an easy task but I have gotten rid of all politics on social media (Facebook, Twitter, Google plus…).  I’ve also unsubscribed to all politics related emails.  I went a step further.  Facebook has a neat feature where, if your friend posts something, instead of hiding all of their posts, you can hide things from where they linked it from.  I’ve hid all the major cable news sources from my Facebook feed so when my friends post links from these sites, I wont see it.

Then I got to thinking about Facebook’s algorithm.  Facebook doesn’t show you everything your friends post.  It tries to decide what you want to see.  In the past I would “like” or comment on news articles and it seemed my whole feel was nothing but links to stories about politics.  And there’s nothing positive that comes out of any of those stories.  On a side note, there’s a local TV station that posts everyday asking “What’s bugging you today?” but they never ask what good is happening.  I digress…

I started to seek out posts when my friends were simply talking about what they were doing or pictures that they had taken themselves.  I started to like or comment on them.  After about 6 hours of this, a lot more “text only” posts were popping up.  I would like and comment them as well and by day two I had gotten rid of all the negative news links!

I’ve also stopped commenting on anything news or politics related that my friends post.  I’ve stopped watching cable news on my lunch breaks at work and I’ve stopped following local news other than weather.  This has definitely lightened my mental load and I honestly don’t think I could have handled it.

It has been about two weeks now and I honestly feel like I’m starting to see more positive in the world.  Only time will tell how much more positive I’ll see it.

Be well.  Be positive.