Like many of you, I struggle in this economy. I try to be financially fair to the people I work with, because I realize that services like mine are expensive, and I want people to be able to get the help and support they need. This has been hard for me, though, because I struggle financially as well. I have been waiting for things to change, which brings me to the purpose of this post and the next few to follow. I’m finding that if I simply sit and wait for things to happen, I feel depressed, anxious and frustrated – and I’m generally not a pleasant person to be around when I’m feeling this way. A lot of us are like this - I know I'm not alone.
So, I decided to change the way I’m looking at my situation and living my life. Here’s where coping with tough times and moving comes in. There are things I can’t control, like the economy, and the fact that many of the things I'd like to do in my business rely on people wanting what I have to offer. There are a multitude of things I can’t control, and if I focus on them, then it’s an easy slide down to feeling lousy.
However, I CAN control myself and how I choose to react to this situation. After talking to people and experiencing unemployment myself, I know that it’s very easy to slip into feeling helpless, hopeless, and paralyzed about the future. There IS something I can do though. I can move. I can move my body, my mind, my feelings and my thoughts.
Ok, I can hear some people groaning, “Oh no…another Little Miss Sunshine who thinks that if I think good thoughts, everything good will happen to me.” So… hang in here with me. I’m NOT going to promise that if you change your thoughts you will automatically attract good things. What I AM telling you is that if you work to change the way you’re thinking, feeling and being now, you may start to feel better. How do I know this? I do it. It's the simple - I practice what I preach.
What I’m suggesting is that you move, somehow – even if it’s just getting out bed to face the day. Moving can be as simple as reframing your thoughts from “I’m never going to get a job” to “Things are tough right now. I’m doing the best I can.” Moving can be, “OK…I’m feeling pretty crummy right now and I have no money. What CAN I do to help myself feel better?” and coming up with ideas. Moving can be noticing the very little, simple things that make life worth living. For me, this is the smiles on my children’s faces and hearing their laughter. It’s feeling the sunshine on my face and noticing the colors and fragrances of the spring flowers. It's enjoying the feel of the wind on my face. For others, it might be the smell of a freshly-brewed cup of coffee, or the feel of your favorite blanket wrapped around you. The point is, moving – no matter how or how much – is a change that may help you start to feel better. And that’s why my walk today was so important – I moved.
I moved my body, and while moving my body, I moved my mind. Moving my mind (thinking) helped me move my feelings. During my walk, I thought about what I have to offer – what are my skills and talents? What am I passionate about? I thought about how to share what I know with others who might be feeling the same thing. And I felt better about myself, in spite of my job situation. I thought about how to market myself, and what I can do to promote my business. In short, moving helped.
SARK has made some worksheets that come from her book “Make Your Creative Dreams Real” involving what she calls “microMOVEments.” These involve taking baby steps toward creating and realizing a dream that you have. Whether you call them baby steps, micromovements, tiny leaps of faith – it’s still movement.
The world isn’t necessarily going to change because you move (but who knows - maybe it will!). However, YOU may start to change because you move. Honestly, this post – and the idea of coping with tough times - came out of my desire to feel better. I am “moving” by writing and sharing my knowledge with you. I can’t change the world, but I can offer my skills and gifts as a way to help me feel better and to hopefully make a difference for others who feel like I’ve been feeling.
I’m going to continue to write on ways to cope in tough times. If you have suggestions on topics you’d like to see, please get in touch with me: firstname.lastname@example.org. I’m always interested in feedback and ideas. For you? Move with hope in your heart and life in your soul!
Please Note: The information on this blog is intended for informational purposes only. This is not therapy, and if you wish to work in therapy, please contact your local mental health agency or your physician for a referral. If you are in crisis or danger, please call 911 for immediate help.