This guest blogger is an amazing woman. She asked me years ago to post on her blog about self-esteem in women. It was an amazing experience. Since then we have both graduated college and moved away from little Rexburg Idaho. I did not know her very well but we have stayed in touch here and there. We watch each other’s lives unfold on social media. She still continues to amaze me with her ability
to be positive and happy. She does things for herself, she creates a lot of her own happiness. Enjoy Cydney’s daily dose of happy:
I have had years of pain. I have had heartbreak, hardship and loneliness that I could not imagine. I struggled to see my worth, my power and my beauty. I felt alone. My life was not where I wanted it to be and I felt lost… In some ways I had to hit rock bottom so I could rebuild. I have learned a lot and I have come to understand pain and healing like never before. Below are some of my findings and as you read them, I hope you find peace if you are struggling. You are not alone and peace will come as you strive to be a good person, lean on God, and surround yourself with things that bring you TRUE JOY. Peace, happiness and life does not come by default. The choice is deliberate and you must choose wisely for YOURSELF.
When you are hurting the world will give you ways to alleviate the pain and disappointment. The world has many tricks for forgetting … yoga, therapy, exercise, sleeping pills, materialism, selfishness, working too much, diets, alcohol, sex, you name it, its out there. Many people use these solely or in any combination as coping mechanisms for the pain and disappointments they feel. Some are okay in moderation and some are not.
You cannot blame anyone for using these as we all look for immediate relief and gratification. We have been raised this way as a society. If we are experiencing pain and sorrow we look for the quickest way to get rid of it… if we cannot… WELL lets just numb the pain.
The world has many ways to avoid and numb problems and pain. At some point though we should come to the end of the line and look for a higher method of TRUE healing. If we do not, the things chosen for numbing will eventually dull and struggle to fill the void leaving us even more empty and hollow. Numbing the pain for a while will make it worse when you finally feel it. This is not a fun place to be leaving us only feeling more frustrated.
Why do we try to avoid pain and therefore prolong it? Pain is impossible to avoid so why not accept it and work on it? Everyone must walk through pain or it will lurk and find you at some point. It is also impossible to numb; you must experience it fully to come out the other side. Pain is not fun but it is necessary to become the people we need to be OR it makes us fall and not reach our potential…the choice is ONCE AGAIN OURS. Being in pain and hardships are not the times to make sense of things. We will not understand WHY things happen. We become too tired, perspectives become limited, and strength fails to fully understand things in the NOW. Time Heals. Look towards the future because the NOW will not be FOREVER. I promise.
The NOW, in the midsts of trials, is a time for the following three things:
1. Strive to be a Good
2.Lean on God
3. Do What Makes You Truly Happy.
1.Strive to Be a Good Person and Serve.
Forgetting self is important as it puts ourselves in the shoes of others, but this does not give us an excuse to NOT take care of ourselves. For the past three years I forgot myself in the midsts of sadness and it created more problems. I stopped doing the things important like going to the gym, taking the extra time to really do my hair and makeup nicely, go to art events, sing etc. At one point I looked at myself and said,”WHY did you do this to yourself? You have shed all of yourself so there is nothing left.” DO NOT DO WHAT I DID. Never justify grief and disappointment as a way to not take care of yourself.
You matter in trials so take care of yourself. Going along with this is, at the start of the day do the best you can to prepare yourself for the day, physically mentally, emotionally, fashionable etc and as you walk out the door the day is no longer fully about you. Step outside with everything as you would like and be ready to serve and look outside of yourself. When you do this, you not only feel good about being your best self physically, fashionably, emotionally etc but you are not focusing on you. When you walk out your door you are no longer worried about solely you.
Strive to be a good person to yourself and to others. It is hard at times in trials but do not forget yourself or the people around you. Everyone is bruising and by helping others you heal yourself.
2.Lean on God.
In trials we can do two things: look away from God in anger, unbelief and doubt or we can walk with Him in strength, love, peace and belief. God (in whatever religion or spiritual belief system) has a beautiful vision for you and your life. We are not alone and worthless. God is the author and at the core of our testing. If we try to walk in the light, the path will be illuminated in directions we could not imagine. God does not want us to be unhappy. We are not creatures of suffering. Joy is the gift He will bring if we TRUST HIM. Trust in Him is truly letting go of our actions to manipulate people ,circumstances and timing. Put your problems in the hands of the One who knows. How beautiful is it to know that a loving God knows the depth of agony… He walked the lonely path so we do not have to. We always have Him.
3.Do What Makes you Happy.
Do not stop doing the things and surrounding yourself with the people you enjoy and love because unfortunate circumstances have arrived. Cling onto people,activities, arts etc that bring you happiness. These will be the tokens that in the darkest of times bring hope and love. Let people help you. We put on makeup and happy faces to hide pains which prohibits the people we cherish and love to show compassion, care and respect to us. It is okay to have people see the limits of where we are … it means we are REAL. Remember yourself, remember others who love you and although trials make you a different person through experiences… you know what brings you TRUE HAPPINESS. Seek after these things and people and embrace them in hard moments.
Tough times reveal who you are. These moments throughout life are needed.
You will not find yourself in times of success because you are too caught up in yourself and what is going on to REALLY self reflect. You will not find yourself in “okay days” because you are restless and complacent. Trials stretch and reveal our limits, strengths and core of being. Suffering strips our character of weak and meaninglessness and exposes the strong and authentic parts of who we are.
Pain strips the craziness and complexity and really helps us to FOCUS.
I hope that as pain and trials come to us all that we can focus mostly on WHERE we are going. March on, be strong and know things do work out. It is all a process ,either long or short, that always makes sense into the stories of our lives. Be patient with life, people and mostly yourself. Happiness is something we can
Where you are now is not where you will be. Brighter and happier days are ahead.