Have you ever met someone who has such a spirit about them that it is like they are shining from deep within? It is as if they have never done something wrong and love everyone around them. They have such inner peace and love that they seem to feel weightless and you can’t stop admiring them.
It is like a child at Christmas time where the light and joy is expressed in their eyes and beams to all of those people around them. You see it in their smile and feel it in your heart. They make you feel like the most important person in the world when you see them. When you are feeling heavy they make you want to lift your burdens and grab on to their joy to feel inner peace.
Has your light gone out? Have the burdens of the demanding life you have created taken over making it hard for you to feel happy? Sometimes I can feel alone in the darkness and think it is just me. However, I know by the massive amount of people drawn to Oprah Winfrey, Rachel Hollis, Brene Brown, Christianity, and grateful children at Christmas that many of us are also drawn to people who “shine brightly.” All the addictions people are facing also show much resort to unhealthy ways to find their happy.
It seems we have common core culprits for our darkness. For me it is usually one of the following:
-when I have no goal
-have given up on my dreams
-have let my mistakes make me feel like I was not worthy of joy
-let the financial burdens weigh me down
-feel physical pain and let myself feel sorry for me
-felt I had to focus so much on the never-ending pursuit to find the happiness that I became blind to all the beauty around me
-forgot to be grateful
Pause for a moment to recognize what it is that makes you feel heavy. If you are having trouble recognizing it, start a journal. Write what is on your mind daily.
If you have watched the movie “Seven” you may think of the 7 deadly sins: greed, lust, gluttony, sloth/laziness, wrath, envy, pride. It graphically pronounces the seven deadly sins. It also portrays them in the most severe states that aren’t relatable to most people and also makes you feel worse if you have been guilty of any of them.
Rather than expand on them, let’s focus on what we can do about finding grace, hope, and joy.
First, think of a time in your life when you felt that love for life, hope, optimism. Luckily for me, the most joyful time in my life was captured in a Christmas picture of my sister and me by the Christmas tree when I was about four years old and my little sister was around age two. If you have a time in your life when you can grab a hold of a vision where you felt like you were shining from the inside out and beaming on to others, hold onto to that image and let’s focus on getting that back!
Second, recognize that you weren’t born as a dark cloud with a load weighing you down. Every one of us was meant to be a gift to the world. Every one of us has a purpose. Every one of us has a choice to let our sins bring us to darkness or to overcome the battles and still choose to bring light. Every one of us has a choice to stop the negative chain. Stop letting those deadly sins ruin your life. The mistakes you have made don’t need to define you. Change can happen if you are willing to change. Start making positive statements to yourself and then do things based on who you want to become. Randy Creamer at Southbrook says, “Bring to the world what you are drawn to in others.” It makes perfect sense!
The tough part is working on yourself. Which leads me to the third step. Think about what it is that is destroying that peaceful feeling for you. Is it hurt? Anger? Anxiety? Fear? What have you done so far to heal?
At Southbrook Counseling I have learned about core interventions used spiritually and through professional psychology through Randy Creamer’s lessons that dig deep into working on you. There are ways to work on each of the following areas of struggle.
- Unforgiveness: feelings of hurt and pain, resentment and bitternessHow to Turn Anger into Inner Peace
- Low Self Esteem: poor body image, self-rejection, no purpose or value click here: https://everythingforthesoulcom.files.wordpress.com/2019/02/c1d2d-trueprofiletemplate.pdf
- Communication Problems
- Critical: defensive, withdraws, difficult relationships
- Emotions and behavior out of control: confusion about why and how they behave
- High levels of stress: blames things on stress
- Can’t say no: overwhelmed, tired, anxious
- Conflicts (download app: Conflict Guide for Couples)
- High levels of anxiety, panic attacks
- Relationships are controlling and hurtful Find Freedom from Controlling Behaviors
If you are in the Dayton-Cincinnati area, email firstname.lastname@example.org to schedule an appointment with someone who can help you through the interventions above at no charge.
If you don’t live in the area, find some spiritual guidance or call a professional counselor in your area.
Photograph Taken in Omena, Michigan