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Stuck In The Middle: How To Jumpstart Your Heart After the Worst Has Passed
The worst is over. People have stopped calling to see how you are. You have resumed your ďnormalĒ life, although with a lot less vigor. From the outside, you probably look fine to people who donít know you well. Months or maybe even years have passed since your loss. You still feel a twinge of emotion here and there, and can still be speared with agony every now and then.
Will it ever get better? Or will you spend the rest of your life as one of the Walking Wounded?
Most people stay in this middle ground ďNo Manís LandĒ for way too long after a loss has decimated their lives. They feel a general malaise about pretty much everything. The process of healing can be accelerated, but just like getting a cast put on a broken bone, the healing takes time and happens little by little.
First step: Ask yourself if you are holding onto anger.
Are you angry at the person who left, at God (or anyone else) who let this happen, at the perpetrator, at any third party? Anger acts like SuperGlue and can hold you stuck to a loss event for the rest of your natural life. If you are experiencing anger on a consistent basis, try any or all of the following:
These may seem silly, but anger turned inward becomes depression. The spectrum between anger and depression is wide, and the variety of techniques above are proven to purge the body, mind and spirit of rage.
Second step: Decide what point there is in hoping things will improve
When anger isnít an issue, but your life is still dull and listless, chances are you are experienced the common side effect of loss: depression. You may actually find that food tastes bad, that you have no interest in social interactions, that your clothes donít fit right, that shopping or driving or other basic details take way too long. These painful signs indicate that you are living without a strong sense of hope.
Here are some tips for finding hope again:
People who donít understand what youíre going through simply havenít been there. You need to find a personal reason that works FOR YOU and you alone on why you want your life to improve. As long as you wallow in misery, you will wallow. As long as you wear your pain on your sleeve, you will be in pain. As long as you are a victim, you will feel like one.
The moment you start to find out WHY you care if your life gets better, and focus on that reason and how you expect things to improve, they will start to do so. You have to have a strong enough reason why you want it better.
Third Step: Practice makes perfect!
Exercise your healing muscles! Take time to strengthen, nurture and heal yourself each day. Little by little, self-compassion will strengthen you to handle the challenges ahead one by one, and to leave the ones behind in the past.
Healing is a journey. There is no
destination, no magical pill. But it does happen, with steps in the right
direction. May you find peace.
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