For a Monday morning…

Dearest Reader,

We all get it once in a while.  That feeling of getting up on a Monday morning.  You don’t really want to.  Maybe you’ve just come back from holiday.  Or maybe you’ve just had the best weekend ever.  But you have to return to reality and back to daily life.  Some find this easier than others.  I’m speaking mainly to the others.

Returning to something mundane and normal after an exciting time is especially hard.  But don’t despair.  Use your breaks to start planning another exciting experience – maybe a simple day trip next weekend, or a home-made spa evening.  You could of course plan a big holiday – 2 weeks away in your dream get-a-way.  Always give yourself something to look forward to – even if its just the tea break.

But, a quick pause for thought.  If your work life (or in fact anything else in your life) is really getting you down, I recommend asking yourself this question:

“Is this really important to me?  Is it serving me in some way?  Can I either improve it so I want to get up on Monday morning to do it, or should I change it for something different?”

I find that to be a good way to help me let go of things in my life that I just can’t bear to do.  The “is it serving me in some way” question is useful though.  I hate doing the housework, yet it serves me because I am so much happier when I have a clean and tidy house.  So I have to find ways to motivate myself to do it!

Don’t despair of Mondays, eventually you’ll enjoy them too!

With love.

On finding your sunshine…

Dearest Reader,

I’ve sat down at my laptop to write you this short note with no words in my heart, just a feeling that I should write.  The sun is shining and that uplifts me.  It reminds me that one of the ways through depression is to always be searching for your personal sunshine, and when it arrives, stubbornly hold on to it and don’t let it go until a bigger brighter sunshine comes along.

Maybe you have several sunshines.  I know I do.  My partner is my biggest sunshine.  But what about when he isn’t there?  If I’m at home, then my pet is another sunshine.  He is the most pure and innocent sunshine because the world hasn’t tainted him with bitterness and experience, all he knows is love.  But what if he’s asleep or off exploring?  I have to keep finding my sunshines.  They aren’t always people, sometimes its an activity – maybe knitting, playing the flute or baking is your sunshine.

Sometimes, one of your sunshines might dim.  That’s okay.  It happens.  Just give it a break, and if it fades completely, then let it go – it is no longer serving you and making you happy.  But sometimes, it’ll come back, even brighter than before!  It happens in the real world too.  The sun itself doesn’t dim, but sometimes the clouds cover it, or darkness falls.  That’s okay, its a natural part of the cycle of life.  But in the darkness, you know it’ll rise again the next morning, or the clouds will eventually float away so you don’t despair.  In the same way, you should know that you’ll always have personal sunshines in your life, they’ll fade, be covered by clouds, occasionally go out but there’ll always be a sunshine somewhere.

Sometimes you might even have to go searching for your sunshine.  But you’ll know it when you find it.  There is a sunshine out there for everyone, don’t give up looking for it!  But just occasionally, you’ll find that your sunshine finds you and fills you up, all by itself.

But, the most important thing to remember is: to spend as much time with your sunshine as you can.  That is what will keep you uplifted and joyful.

With love as ever, and blessings of sunshine.

On dealing with emotions…

Dearest Reader,

Maybe you feel hopeless and unhappy.  Maybe you think that life has dealt you a bad hand and you’re angry.  Maybe you’re just having a bad day and hate the world.  Maybe you want something more than the relief that cute animal GIFs and videos can give you.  I can’t promise to give you that encouragement or relief, but I’ll do my best, for you, but also for me.

I think its important to remember that all our experiences, the good and the bad, are just that.  An experience.  And like all experiences, it will pass.  I was doing a meditation a while back, I forget which and where from, but the lesson that has stayed with me since is that things change and that if we try to experience it all from a sense of calm and curiosity, we will be better able to cope with them.  I’m not saying that you shouldn’t experience the feelings of fear, anger, depression, sadness, elation, amazement, wonder, joy.  But rather, experience them mindfully, and remember that like all things, it too will pass.

Life has a funny way of guiding us without us even knowing it.  If you are unhappy, don’t just ignore it, work out why you are unhappy and what you can do to deal with it.  It may well be life’s way of telling you that something isn’t right.  Maybe dealing with it means you feel you need to leave that job you hate, talk to your partner about what they are/aren’t doing that upsets you or many other countless things.  You never know, maybe your boss thinks you were the wrong person for the job anyway or your partner is unhappy too, but life thinks you are the stronger person to deal with it.

Experience the emotions, but don’t let them overtake you and cause you to make irrational choices and actions.  If you feel anger, breathe deeply before letting it go.  In those breaths, experience it, let it fill you up, then try to separate your actions from your anger.  If you feel sadness, experience it mindfully, let it fill you up, but then separate it from your actions, don’t allow it to cause you to be irrational.  You could do the same with happiness.  Breathe in deeply, experience the joy mindfully, let it fill you up completely.  Then, separate it, remember to think rationally and calmly.

Above all, remember that you are human and that we all experience emotions.  You are never alone even if you feel it, someone is out there, waiting for you to reach out to them for comfort.

My dearest reader, I hope this may help you just a little bit, as it has helped me throughout the last weeks.  I understand this may not work for everyone, but maybe give it a try, you never know it might work out for you.

With love, as ever.

When you’re alone on Valentine’s Day…

Dearest reader,

It’s Valentine’s Day and maybe all the couples you know are having together time and you feel like your missing out.  Maybe you’re single, or maybe your partner is busy because they’ve got an important job to do, or an important meeting, or they have to travel, or just anything.  Whatever the situation, it’s Valentine’s Day, and you’re alone, and you don’t like this.

First off, you’re not alone.  There are other people feeling like you do, take comfort in that idea.  Secondly, why not use this time to show yourself some love?  You could take some extra time to do some yoga; treat yourself to long, relaxing bath; give yourself a big hug; give some extra attention to your pet or just take some extra time to do something you love.

One of the most important things you can do is to love yourself.  I know it sounds hard, trust me, I struggle with it too, but giving yourself some love can make you feel better.  So take a time out and enjoy yourself.  After all, it’s only Valentine’s Day – it comes round every year just the same.  You could even pretend it doesn’t exist and treat just like any other day.  Remember, the most important person you need to love is yourself, if you don’t look after and love yourself, how can you look after anyone else?

With love.