Sunday, 11 May 2014

Lessons from the past week

Wow, I am glad I am still standing. I have been through probably the worst week since 2006, however, I feel a lot stronger and more able to deal with life's challenges than what I used to be. It's now 9 days since I have been back in the UK, and I am very, very glad to be back, as I may have mentioned.

Do I have regrets about going to France and then Malta? The latter one, yes. However, maybe even that happened for a reason. I think going to France was probably the right thing. And maybe the whole experience served to show me what I do have, back in the UK. I was trying to escape what had become a difficult situation with two horrible jobs in a row, and wanted to take a bit of time out and see what opportunities might be available. I don't particularly like having to go back on benefits, but I am doing my best to trust that a better opportunity will be there for me when the time is right.




So .. what have I learnt?
1) I've just mentioned the word TRUST. Now, there are times when my mind can go into a very fast spin, and I stress out like crazy. But I do my best to be as peaceful as I can within such situations. Sometimes it can seem like life has abandoned us, that we cannot carry on - but it is important to put as much trust in life as we can at these times. I have seen, during the past week, that the universe still does have my back. People, books and messages have come on cue. Everything is going to be okay. Even if you are in the midst of a shitstorm, if you're still meant to be on this earth (and I believe I still have more to fulfil on this planet) .. it will all work out.

2) Strength. I did a blog post about staying strong the other day, which is here. I can see how far I've come and how much I've learnt in the past few years. If I had faced the events of last week about 5 years ago, I hate to think how I would have managed. I still hate going through really hard times, and am very sensitive to intense emotions. But I have a lot more tools to deal with these things now. For which I am grateful.

3) Reaction. 'You cannot control what happens to you, but you can control how you react.' That's not to say you will be in a state of pure joy when bad things happen. The likelihood is, you will have to work through a whole lot of stuff that is unpleasant to face. And certain reactions we have, depending on our state of consciousness, are difficult if not impossible to control. But we need to flow with life rather than fight against it, and remain open hearted, even when it seems like life is trying to destroy us. Particularly in the UK, people seem to react with negativity and hostility when they feel threatened. But having a greater understanding of life events does help you stay a bit calmer.

4) There are still plenty of old thought patterns lurking. Healing is not an overnight magical fix. Challenges can trigger old thought patterns that you may have thought you'd dealt with. And we'll never get to a stage where all our thoughts are perfect - otherwise what is the point of being on this earth? Difficulties can present opportunities for you to go into your places of pain and opportunities to change, to whatever extent you are able to.

5) Living in the present moment. It's not realistic for most of us to be like Eckhart Tolle. But I have, at times, been able to be a little more in the NOW. It is certainly a better way to live than worrying and obsessing about the future. As a perpetual worrier throughout most of my life, 'old habits die hard'. But taking things one step at a time does seem to give me a greater trust in life itself.

6) Be good to yourself! Yes, times of self hate have cropped up this past week. But fundamentally, whatever my monkey mind will tell me, I know I am a good person. Today, I have given myself plenty of rest, which I think my body really needed. And indulged in a bit of comfort eating - which is one area of my life that needs to be faced - but there are occasions where a bit of comfort eating won't do any real harm - at least that's my opinion and I'm sticking to it for now!

7) Gratitude - I have been seeing a few messages about gratitude recently. I don't really believe in the kind of affirmation type exercises where you list 10 things that you are grateful for. For me, it works better when I can genuinely feel grateful within my heart. And when your back is against the wall, sometimes it helps you to appreciate the things that can so easily be taken for granted, the things you still have even though you may have little. Or I can just be grateful for the miracle of life itself.

Anyway, that's all for now. Hopefully soon I will be back to my happy self. A lot of people have been through extremely challenging times recently. There must be something in the air. Sending love and peace to all who read this.

Andy

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