The world is in an unimaginable scenario. How are you navigating these challenging times? Some of the media, government officials, family, and friends are unintentionally fanning the flames with the words “Don’t Panic”. What is the last word you remember? Panic!
Here’s a perfect example of using words in a more positive and purposeful way. How about using “stay calm” in this situation? Much better choice. How to stay calm? SCREAM! Yes, scream, or dance, breathe, sing, shout to help relieve the stress and anxiety. Then act from a calm place. The place from within.
More on this later…but first, as the chaos begins to wane, many are in that state of survival. The very basics of life have been thwarted, such as food, water, shelter, medical supplies and some form of work, which translates to money, and being able to sustain yourself and family.
Emotions begin to arise, and the stages of loss kick in, from chaos/confusion, disbelief/denial, sadness/depression, awareness, anger, and action. Embracing each of these aspects fully and giving them their due attention is the first order of business. It is imperative to give these emotions a voice and an outlet through physiological and/or creative expression in the moments they surface.
Four tips for emotional release:
Kat Naps (Rest).
Rest is important now, if you can take a nap, do so. Even if it’s just a power nap for twenty minutes. Cover yourself with a blanket. Use an eye pillow, close the curtains, and even use ear plugs to take out every distraction. The brain needs this type of “no stimulation” to actually rejuvenate (recalibrate). You will also feel more rested. Ironically, a beneficial routine ensued from this kat nap hour. I began to make my bed each time, and I would make it first thing in the morning when I got up, too. A simple task, yet a big accomplishment for the day. Plus, I always returned to a perfectly made bed, especially for me.
Try something new. I was in a very dark tunnel the first year of my accident, and I wasn't able to speak or think coherently. In my frustration, I grabbed a no. 2 pencil and a brown paper bag, and just started drawing. It had to be from this other part of my brain that wasn’t injured..the creative side. When I rest my pencil, I sat back and looked at the beautiful woman inside a butterfly. I never had sketched before; didn’t know I was an artist. I ended up with about 25 sketches in the next couple of years. I now look back on them fondly, as a great demonstration of something wonderful that can happen in traumatic times. What ordinary object in your home might you use for something creative?
Create a vision board.
This is especially helpful for those left brains who can’t get out of their analytical minds! And it is a perfect calming and supporting exercise for those who may be sad, and wanting to envision a better now, and near future. When I made a big move from California to North Carolina, to escape the high cost of living, endless fires, and high temperatures, I left very dear friends behind. I became depressed of losing such a passionate tribe. To help lift my spirits and the new community I lived in, I created a few vision boards over the course of a couple of years.
A vision board is simply a collage of words and pictures that represent your specific dreams or goals. To create your vision board, gather some magazines, scissors, glue and a poster board of any kind. I’ve also taped two manilla folders together in a pinch. Begin by sitting quietly, and allow the feelings and images to arise that really inspire you. Then pick up a magazine thumbing through the pages for pictures that move you and cut them out. You can also cut out affirmation words and phrases that represent how you want to feel. Now it’s time to create your collage by placing the cut out pictures onto your poster board, then gluing them into place. Once done, put your board in a place where you will see it regularly. By looking at each of the different aspects and power verbiage, you begin to vibrate those pieces into a tangible force! Knowing they will already come true is the law of attraction at its best. The Universe has to deliver. Then look for signs your dreams are coming true. This is truly an empowering exercise to do again and again. Do a little “razz a ma tazz”
One of the best ways I release frustration and anger safely from my body is through a little bouncing in place movement. When the emotional anger builds within in you, find a corner of the room and stand comfortable with feet shoulder width apart, knees slightly bent. Then begin a rhythmic bounce and breathe, saying “ha-ha-ha”. Sometimes I even growl. Shake your arms to the beat too. You can put music to this action with a melodic beat to help you keep pace. Best not to be the fire hose and explode all your emotions at once. Just keep this bouncing release going for a few minutes to slowly defuse the anger into the wall. When you feel you’ve released enough, stand quietly and feel what’s happening in your body. Doing this safe exercise is much better than displacing anger, frustration or resentment on someone else, especially a family member. I was forced to completely let go…what was done was done, there was no going back. It became a new moment to moment game for me now. My brain was fragmented, and I was disoriented. Allowing the emotional response to surface was key. I expressed the best I could in fun and different ways. The silver lining for you, is that you have your brain, your control center. This will be a huge advantage in adjusting and creating your new life. By being awake to what is happening in your brain and body, and allowing those emotions to surface, you have the opportunity to release them in the moment in a safe and productive way. If you do, it will ensure that you keep your immune system up and stay healthy, along with keeping your mind clear to take purposeful action in all your endeavors. It may also propel creative aspects to other parts of your life, or the path of a new job or career. Your assignment: Which tip will you focus on this week? I invite you to give it a try!