We all get down in the dumps at times. Some of us more than others. For some of us, anxiety, which can eventually lead to depression, becomes chronic. It becomes a way of life. We forget there is another way.
The holidays bring on triggers - reminders of past events and people whom we either miss or dislike with a vengeance. It is when we recreate these events in our mind that we are able to clearly re-experience the negativity or joy, whichever the event/person gifted us.
Many people become more engaged in negativity as the holiday bustling surrounds them. Sometimes even smells of the past remind us of events from long ago. If we are not cognizant of these triggers, we allow and even welcome them into our souls. We allow ourselves to become despondent, angry, sad, and alone. We don't have to allow our feelings to become bitter, cold, and frayed.
Just like I don't have to go out into that bitter cold today. I can remove myself to the warmth emitted in my sister's house. I have cozy flannel pajamas in which to lounge and a hot cup of tea to warm me inside and out. So we do have a choice. But we must know that we have a choice. And then we must want to make that choice.
We have powerful minds. We can create harmony and happiness if we only so desire. When those intrusive thoughts begin clouding our heads and hearts, we can do several things:
- Recognize a trigger for what it is: merely a thought. Not reality necessarily. We do not have to react to it.
- Create a diversion. Do something calming like coloring a mandala or reading something interesting. Or maybe even watching a funny sitcom.
- Take deep breaths. Slow your thinking down. Racing thoughts really never go anywhere.
- Meditate or pray.
- Force yourself to smile. Those endorphins released by smiling create a sense of euphoria and become our reality.
- Begin thinking positive thoughts. Even force yourself to do so. It eventually becomes real.
- Stop infecting others with your negativity. Stay away from folks until you are in charge mentally and try not to interact socially with those with whom you are vexed or simply those who may be recipients of your negativity.
The list above is certainly not inclusive and not linear in any fashion. It's just a toolbox of ways to calm down, lighten up, and live life a little more fully. After all, this is our only life. It is our choice whether we will live it calmly and peacefully or if we want to invite drama in for a stay.