4 WAYS TO INTERRUPT AND RESOLVE EXCESSIVE WORRY

The smothering effects of excessive worry can sabotage peace and happiness for hours, days, or even longer. Worry thoughts are typically rooted in fear of change and/or uncertainty of future events or outcomes. Worrying isn’t bad in itself. It is an effort from the ego to resolve fear and to aid in future planning.

However, it becomes problematic when the energy is persistent, stuck, and cyclic as you ruminate in the worry thoughts. Excessive worrying is like a freight train running out of control and derailing you from the magic and opportunities of the present moment. The consequence is less likelihood of thinking and behaving from clarity and ease. Like me if you mastered the art of worrying, you most likely formed a habitual neural pathway which is a reason worrying shows up often and is difficult to interrupt.

Personally, I’ve come to realize when I begin to worry about my safety, my daughter’s safety, or my environment’s safety it is typically a cue I’m in a place of change and transition. The change triggers fear of uncertainty which then retreats to a primal space of concern for basic needs or to my root chakra. It is important to explore how and when you excessively worry to gain a better understanding of your internal state. The awareness will encourage a feeling of empowerment in order to regain control and mastery of your mind. Sometimes you may notice physical sensations, pain, or distressing feelings (such as feeling unsafe) prior to becoming aware of the specific worry thoughts.

Be forewarned, habitual worrying may present a fight due to its stable home in your mind, but it just takes matched persistence to evict its power. It is absolutely possible to master this new way of thinking just as you mastered worrying. It is a matter of refocusing your thoughts with determined practice in order to retrain your brain and strengthen a more adaptive neural pathway.

The following are four ways to regain your power and to return to the engineer seat: 1) Repeat An Intention, 2) Imagery, 3) Acknowledge The Fear, and 4) Challenge The Validity Of Worry Thoughts. The skills can be used one at a time or all at once providing a means to direct your train back to peace, clarity, and happiness.

It is beneficial to incorporate some type of diaphragmatic breathing, grounding, mindfulness, and/or meditation practice when applying the skills. These practices cue the brain and body to relax so it becomes open to the new skill(s). I enjoy utilizing tuning in to one or more of my five senses to ground my energy in addition to diaphragmatic breathing. This grounding technique may include tuning into a pleasant background noise, noticing the feeling of the weight of my body while standing or sitting, visually noticing the details of an object or person, or awareness of a taste and/or texture in my mouth, etc. I also enjoy going outside or going for a walk or run to ground my energy.

 1) REPEAT AN INTENTION

This skill is a way to interrupt the cyclic energy of worrying. It can be any intention that generates positive feelings and peace. I enjoy using the intention: “I release the future to God” which is from the book, A Course in Miracles, by Helen Schucman and William Thetford (2007, combined volume). You may adapt this intention to what resonates with you most by releasing the future, for example, to Source, to Spirit, to your Higher Self, to Nature, to a Higher Power, etc. Hopefully, you experience an actual sense of relief from the pressure of worry and fear and a sense of peace from a quiet mind. Another possible intention to practice is: “I choose to not manifest worry or fear”. This intention may promote feelings of empowerment and self-worth.

Either intention energetically lessens the tension of anxiety and promotes higher vibrational frequencies cultivating fertile grounds for manifesting what you actually desire. It is probable you will need to be just as persistent with the intentions as the worry thoughts. Again, it is helpful to include deep relaxing breaths and/or a grounding or mindfulness practice with the intention.

 2) IMAGERY

Imagine in this very moment your life is absolutely perfect. This skill requires you to greet your inner child and give yourself permission to pretend and imagine like when you were young. With your eyes closed or with a soft gaze in a safe place truly feel, see, and think how it would be if your life was absolutely perfect in this very moment. Inhaling and exhaling deeply the pleasant and gratifying thoughts and feelings.

The imagining of perfection will vary amongst all of us, but in general it is an activity to encourage feelings of fulfillment and complete satisfaction of having all your desires and dreams come true. Ensure this life of perfection serves your higher good and higher good of others. You may call upon this image as often as you need in order to interrupt and dispel any disturbing worry thoughts.

 3) ACKNOWLEDGE THE FEAR

A way to acknowledge the fear is to ask yourself: “What am I afraid of?”. This question may generate one or more fearful thoughts. Acknowledging the thoughts emerging from the dark corners of your mind illuminates the thoughts in order to see it objectively thus reducing the power of the thoughts. It is even more beneficial to write down the thoughts or to verbalize the thoughts out loud. Once again, it is recommended to utilize diaphragmatic breathing and/or a grounding/mindfulness exercise to tolerate and to reduce any distressing feelings of fear, anger, or guilt and/or physiological reactions associated with the fear thoughts.

 4) CHALLENGE THE VALIDITY OF WORRY THOUGHTS

If the worry energy remains unyielding in its stronghold, then you may want to further explore the roots of the thoughts and to challenge the validity. Challenging the validity of the worry thoughts is a way to gain increased altitude to objectively understand if the thoughts are based in truth and reality. Review the previous blog, “THE ART OF DISENTANGLING YOUR MIND” (15 March 2016), for a full explanation of how to apply this skill.

After conducting the challenge and discovering a more realistic and adaptive thought, you will once again need to be persistent in practicing the new thought. The continual practice will eventually strengthen a more conducive neural pathway. As repeatedly stated earlier, it is beneficial to include a practice of relaxation or mindfulness to open the door for the new thought to enter.

 MY EXPERIENCE USING THE COPING SKILLS

There I was tumbling down the familiar rabbit hole of worry…

Excessive worry has plagued my life since as long as I can remember. Showing its sly head in the form of cyclic worry energy about safety, finances, achieving success, and finding divine love, basically rooted in fear. Typically with the worry, beliefs of unworthiness come along for the ride. It can consume me to where I feel wound up with a cluttered mind, emotional angst, and a tense body like I’m dragging a heavy weight impairing me from any sort of pleasant feelings and peace.

Empowered by awareness and consequences of my worry thoughts, these skills bestow a means to interrupt and resolve my worrying. I will share my experience with a couple of the skills as a practical example of the application.

 IMAGERY and INTENTION

On this particular morning the specific worry thoughts were not identified, but I felt an overall feeling of dissatisfaction, irritation, and fear. I went for a run. For me retreating outside and doing something physical helps to ground my energy and clear my mind. Typically after the runs, I stretch, do a few yoga poses, and meditate. I decided to try something different during the routine. I told myself to pretend my life was absolutely perfect in that very moment. I felt the power of the negativity wanting to immediately refute the idea by bringing the thought: “But it’s not perfect how can I even pretend it to be”. Persistence was needed and the challenge was on.

I gave myself permission to connect with the innocence of my inner child and explored deeper. I remembered how magical it felt to pretend and imagine like I used to do. With the image of my inner child, I again prompted myself to see, feel, and think what it would be like for my life to be absolutely perfect in this moment. I imagined all my desires came to fruition and all my dreams came true.

The word “free” surfaced in my mind and I saw myself rising and flying with grace. Then the word “organized” came forward of having financial freedom and being cluttered free both internally and externally. Spirit ascended in my heart with an overwhelming abundance of love, warmth, and joy. I saw myself encased in a cloud of completeness and peace. I couldn’t help, but smile. I felt protected and guided, and then the phrase: “don’t be afraid to teach” echoed in my heart. Empowered and vibrating on a higher frequency, I was able to interrupt the worry thoughts several times during the day. I simply recalled the morning meditation resulting in continued resonance of confidence and peace.

 ACKNOWLEDGE THE FEAR

The excessive worrying was quite persistent on this night. I tried the intention: “I release the future to God” which resulted in some relief, but I knew I needed to go deeper because my attachment to the worry was a bit tight. I explored the worry thoughts by asking myself: “What am I afraid of?”. Almost immediately several thoughts surfaced: “I’m afraid of missing an opportunity”; “I’m afraid of being alone the rest of my life”; “I’m afraid to wait”; and “I’m afraid of being left behind”. I knew the origins of all these thoughts. They were imprinted in my memory during the tragic loss of my beloved husband when he was KIA in Operation Iraqi Freedom.

By bringing the thoughts and its origins from the shadowy corners of my mind to the light, the thoughts dispelled along with the negative and persistent energy. I felt lighter with a clearer mind and a heart as ease allowing me to drift into a deep sleep. If I was still tightly attached to the thoughts and the associated negative feelings/behaviors, I would then challenge the validity of the thoughts as described in the fourth skill.

It is my hope these skills provide you some relief and ease. Thank you Spirit for providing another opportunity for healing.

If so inclined, please support my work through Patreon:

https://www.patreon.com/divinehealingmastery

The purpose of this blog is to share with you how I integrate my professional mental health experience, personal experience, and spiritual awareness in the form of coping skills. By sharing my experience, it is my hope it will provide a practical example how to interrupt and eventually resolve the cyclic energy of suffering and to elevate your energy! Please visit my Facebook page: Divine Healing: Poetry and Coping Skills (https://www.facebook.com/DivineHealing.Poetry.Coping) or my website: http://divinehealingmastery.com to learn more about me and to read my poetry.

 PLEASE BE ADVISED

The coping skills provided in this blog are meant as a tool to aid in healing and not for psychotherapy or social work practice requiring a contractual, professional relationship. If you need consistent therapeutic care and/or crisis intervention due to being at risk of harming yourself or others, then seek professional and/or emergency services immediately.

These skills work best when you are ready to heal. It is OK if you are not quite ready. Please be gentle and patient with yourself. You will heal when you are ready. Sending you so much love, warmth, and compassion.

Kindly,

Stacy

© Stacy L. Pintor 2016. All Rights Reserved.

(No part of this blog may be reproduced without written permission from the author.)

1 WAY TO MANIFEST POSITIVE RATHER THAN NEGATIVE EXPERIENCES

We’ve all done a good job manifesting the negative. It’s been in our nature since the beginning of time. Most negativity is rooted in fear. Our primitive brains have been hardwired to a bias of negativity out of survival. However, we for the most part do not have the same dangers in our environment as our earliest ancestors such as avoiding being killed by predators or surviving in austere environments. We still need the function of the primitive brain to keep us safe from real, legitimate threats to our health and well-being. Ideally when the threat passes our brains return to a balanced mind.

It becomes a problem when our mind habitually defaults to the negative and stays stuck in the experience. The chronic negativity is a way for the ego’s misguided attempt to protect you from future perceived emotional harm or to make you feel significant in some way. Refer to the previous blog, “The Art of Disentangling Your Mind” (15 March 2016), for my explanation of the workings of the mind and ego.

For the purpose of this post, I will focus on a practice of flipping negative thoughts to positive thoughts. First, it would be helpful to take inventory of the quality of your thoughts per day to determine if this skill will be beneficial. I suggest conducting a little experiment and counting how many positive thoughts you have compared to negative thoughts. If you find the negative thoughts outnumber the positive thoughts, then you most likely mastered manifesting negative experiences. The challenge then becomes mastering another way of thinking by redirecting your focus from the negative to the positive. There’s nothing to lose besides the cyclic energy of suffering.

The practice itself is fairly simple. When you become aware of a negative thought flip it. For example, a negative thought: “I don’t get what I want” may easily be flipped to: “I will get what I want with balance and harmony”. Breathe in the new thought and release it with ease and peace to the universe, to Spirit, to God, or to Nature (whatever you call your higher source). The key upon releasing the thought on the exhale is to truly believe the thought even if it only lasts a second. The more you practice the new thought the more opportunity you give yourself for believing it.

The practice becomes challenging when the old habitual negative thinking wants to keep a stronghold in your mind. Your strategy is to loosen its grip by flooding your mind with new positive thought(s). Flooding your mind may include: 1) repetitively repeating the positive thought(s); 2) writing down the thought(s) and keeping it in a place you see it often; and/or 3) repeating the thought(s) out loud or even singing it (time in the car offers a good space for this). You may find other ways that resonate best with you as you practice the skill.

As briefly mentioned earlier, there’s an additional step to flooding your mind. The door needs to be opened for the new thought(s) to enter. An effective way to open the door is to include deep healing, gentle breaths as you repeat, see, speak, or sing the new positive thought(s). The calm breathing cues your mind and body the new thought is from love and not fear. It is counterproductive, to practice this skill with a sense of anxiety, anger, or force because it gives the negativity more power. On the exhale, release the new positive thought by expecting the best without attachment to how the outcome will look, feel, or even taste.

Often, we want to control the outcome rather than allowing it to unfold naturally and with ease. Especially, if we feel vulnerable or feel lost in uncertainty. Our ego says we don’t want to be made the fool so we anxiously try to control the situation and force the outcome, at which often times we become the fool we fear. Not realizing by expecting the worst we energetically manifest the worst. This practice isn’t a passive approach to life and doesn’t advocate for no action. Instead, it offers taking action from a space of peace, clarity, hope, and empowerment rather than from a space of worry, fear, doubt, anxiety, or anger.

Repeat the skill until you notice disbelief of the new thought begins to loosen and eventually falls away. Notice how your day changes due to the change in your perspective. You may find you respond to your environment with ease rather than react with dis-ease. You may experience a change in feelings from the usual mundane irritation, anger, and/or sadness. The change may actually be feeling happy, content, and at peace or the change may just be less of the negative feelings. With all these experiences, you are already manifesting the positive rather than the negative. Upon more practice, you will retrain your brain to this new way of functioning.

Watch the magic that enters your life because you’ve elevated yourself and raised your vibrational frequency. It’s time to take your power back by realizing just how powerful you are. Take some responsibility of the negativity in your external world because it may have been created from the negativity in your internal world. We are energetic beings influencing an energetic world. When you elevate yourself and raise your vibration, positive blessings of every kind can actually come forward on the same frequency. It will not be blocked by negative, lower vibrational frequencies. Negativity will not be able to sustain for long on your higher vibration.

If you experience a lot of difficulty with the practice and/or notice no change, then it may mean your attachment to negativity is a little too tight. Keep trying with breath or just try it another day. Manifesting the positive is also taking care of yourself by being patient and gentle with your healing process. If you throw up your hands or give up out of frustration and apathy, you’ve placed another barrier in front of your process of healing. Therefore, it will be another barrier to disarm and remove. Even if you notice less negativity throughout the day, you are manifesting more positive in your life.

 MY EXPERIENCE USING THE COPING SKILL

I woke feeling unrested and tired. The negativity quickly settled in like a dense fog as I maneuvered through my morning routine. I noticed thoughts like: “When will things go my way?”. I felt angry during my run and gave dirty looks to drivers passing me above the speed limit. Knowing my current state of mind was not helpful to either myself or others, I listened to a meditation on manifestation after my run. At first I listened to the guidance with some resistance, like what’s the point? I thought “screw it”, might as well try something different. I decided to conduct an experiment for the day by flipping negative thoughts to positive thoughts.

The first thoughts that came forward were: “I was vulnerable and reached out for love to have no response once again”, which led to a familiar negative belief: “I’m unworthy of love”. I noticed the effects of these thoughts on my body such as a heavy pressure near my heart, sinking feeling in my gut, shoulders rounded forward, and head down. I flipped the negative thought to: “I took a risk and shared love”, breathing it in and out with ease and calm. I then noticed my head literally lifted and shoulders moved back causing my heart space to open and widen my sacral area. I felt aligned, lighter, and complete. As if Spirit in that moment offered me the love I perceived was missing in my life. I felt a temptation to worry about or doubt the outcome of the new positive thought rather than expecting the best. I vowed to trust the process so the positivity may cultivate without hindrance from invasive negative thoughts.

I took the practice one step further by flipping the other negative belief: “I’m unworthy of love”. Immediately, I felt excitement and joy, but with a tinge of heaviness and disbelief. This would be the thought I needed to practice throughout the day. I flooded my mind with the thought: “I am worthy of love”. I repetitively repeated the thought, keeping vigilant of how my mind and body responded to the practice, especially when I was aware of a familiar sinking feeling (negativity) poking its sly head.

The results of the experiment were as follows: 1) felt expansive in my chest with each breath massaging and caressing my heart and lungs; 2) improved posture aligned with Spirit prompting increased confidence; 3) felt strong and supported with peaks of joy; 4) wrote this blog with a sense of purpose from a space of joy, service, and love; 5) felt armed with a mind shield against habitual negative thoughts; 6) kept me in the present moment with a clear mind and heart, rather than being lost in worry or doubt (fertile grounds for more negative thoughts); and 7) noticed strangers were authentically kinder to me and I genuinely offered the same in return.

My day unfolded with more ease, clarity, and purpose. I responded from a space of peace and felt liberated from the cyclic energy of suffering. It is not just a one day experiment and will need to be implemented often in order to interrupt and overcome the pattern of habitual negative thinking. However, I feel empowered to take back control of my mind and manifest the positive!

Thank you Spirit for providing an opportunity for healing.

If so inclined, please support my work through Patreon:

https://www.patreon.com/divinehealingmastery

The purpose of this blog is to share with you how I integrate my professional mental health experience, personal experience, and spiritual awareness in the form of coping skills. By sharing my experience, it is my hope it will provide a practical example how to interrupt and eventually resolve the cyclic energy of suffering and to elevate your energy! Please visit my Facebook page: Divine Healing: Poetry and Coping Skills (https://www.facebook.com/DivineHealing.Poetry.Coping) or my website: http://divinehealingmastery.com to learn more about me and to read my poetry.

 PLEASE BE ADVISED

The coping skills provided in this blog are meant as a tool to aid in healing and not for psychotherapy or social work practice requiring a contractual, professional relationship. If you need consistent therapeutic care and/or crisis intervention due to being at risk of harming yourself or others, then seek professional and/or emergency services immediately.

These skills work best when you are ready to heal. It is OK if you are not quite ready. Please be gentle and patient with yourself. You will heal when you are ready. Sending you so much love, warmth, and compassion.

Kindly,

Stacy

© Stacy L. Pintor 2016. All Rights Reserved.

(No part of this blog may be reproduced without written permission from the author.)

THE ART OF DISENTANGLING YOUR MIND

From an early age, I tended to be a “thinker” and “in my head a lot”. My mind, like most, can be quite busy with many thoughts like the status of my wellbeing, interpersonal relationship standing, interpretations of external stimuli and distractions, daydreams, and conditioned beliefs. I’m fascinated by the power of the mind and the many facets it holds. For example, how a single thought or belief can create your internal reality thus manifesting your external reality. The mind is the filter you perceive the world both internally and externally, so it is crucial to become aware of the type of filter you are using.

First understanding this filter is necessary in disentangling the mind. I will offer my understanding of the workings of the mind to provide a platform for breaking any cyclic energy of suffering. Feel free to develop your own understanding with the intention of gaining compassion and discipline for the mind’s brilliance.

Based on my own investigation of the mind and spiritual growth, I believe it is actually a neutral mechanism to aid in creation of our experience. The mind is directed by your soul experience in creating either ease or suffering pending the types of thoughts present. It utilizes three states for its creation: a neutral state, higher (Divine) state, and ego state. A balanced, disciplined mind harmonizes the three states of mind.

The neutral state is the void of thoughts or detachment of thoughts lasting seconds, minutes, or longer. Ultimately as an observer of your thoughts, you can completely detach yourself from them realizing in that void of neutrality your thoughts are NOT you (Divine Spirit). A sense of peace and quiet may be experienced during these neutral voids. It is helpful to be familiar with a practice of mindfulness, meditation, or contemplation to further gain understanding of this detachment.

The mind in its higher state is aligned with Divine source and your heart. It generates positive and flexible thoughts creating experiences of bliss, joy, and ease. You expect the best and are able to gracefully maneuver through any set-backs; knowing each set-back is an opportunity for growth and learning.

The ego state has roots in the primitive mind of wanting to be the “protector” and the need to feel “special” hence trying to make you feel safe and accepted. When the ego is functioning from clarity, it serves an important role of helping you make appropriate judgments and decisions to avoid danger; find safety from actual detrimental threats; and setting appropriate boundaries. It activates the nervous system to execute the fight, flight, or freeze response. Ideally, once the threat passes the mind returns to a balanced state.

The ego state becomes problematic; however, when the mind becomes chronically displaced from the balance state and stuck in a perceived threat; clinging to its role as “protector” and carrying the heavy attachment of negative storylines. Your nervous system may be chronically activated as if the original threat is happening in real time, even though the “threat” was triggered from internal or external circumstances (i.e. memories, similar interpersonal relations, or similar environmental situation [sites, sounds, smells, etc.]). Examples of internal emotional threats potentially keeping you stuck may include: feeling victimized, desperately wanting acceptance and/or approval from others, feeling abandoned, fear of rejection, feeling unworthy, and so on.

Unfortunately, we may have trouble reminding the ego, due to the attachment of preconditioned or conditioned negative storylines, the threat already passed. These negative storylines cling to painful emotions like heavy concrete blocks pulling you further into the spiral of suffering. The spiral may cause reactions/behaviors with anguish and not allow the emotion to naturally flow and dissipate. Common consequences of the spiral may include experiences of dis-ease; feeling spun out of control; feeling run by worry or doubt; and/or feeling consumed by intense emotions of fear, anger, sadness, or guilt; basically an entangled mess of thoughts, feelings, and body discomfort.

The use of the term preconditioned is referring to thoughts/belief developed and learned from an early age during upbringing, potentially forming self-defeating core beliefs. The term conditioned is referring to thoughts/beliefs learned due to existing life circumstances such as traumatic events. It can be easy to “hate” the ego for creating such an experience of hell, but this reaction only perpetuates the cyclic energy of suffering. With deep healing and love of self, it is possible to develop compassion for the ego’s existence because of its desire to “protect” even when it spins out of control from time to time, like an adolescent needing direction.

The primary reason some storylines are considered negative or self-defeating is they are distorted (not 100% true) and maladaptive. Maladaptive meaning, as these thoughts are cycling in your mind, you typically react to your environment with negative emotions and behaviors rather than respond with grace and ease. Examples of distorted thinking may include using extreme words (always, never, etc.), catastrophizing outcomes, expecting the worst, and/or feeling a certain way so it must be true (i.e. I feel obligated to help others before my own needs so that must mean I am obligated). There are other types of distorted thoughts so I recommend researching distorted thinking under the intervention, Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT).

In order to interrupt this cyclic energy, you need to first become aware of your thoughts/beliefs and the associated feelings, body sensations, and behaviors. It is helpful to take an unbiased, curious approach to your mind and internal state as if you are a neutral observer conducting an investigation without attachment to outcome. Awareness of feelings, body sensations, and behaviors associated with distorted thoughts/beliefs offers a signal or cue your mind is displaced from its balanced state (like the “check engine” light in your car). When you identify a thought you may want to explore it deeper to see if it has any roots in a core belief (i.e. I’m unworthy, I’m not good enough, I’m a monster, I don’t deserve love, etc.).

Once you feel comfortable with this practice, then the disentangling and disciplining of your mind may begin. An effective way is to challenge the thought/belief. Challenging distorted thoughts/beliefs has origins in CBT and more extensively in Cognitive Processing Therapy (CPT). Also, spiritual teachers such as Byron Katie in her book, I Need Your Love— Is That True?have also demonstrated the power of challenging self-defeating thoughts.

The skill is quite simple. I recommend practicing this skill in a written format until you gain a level of mastery. Create a worksheet including the following: 1) Identify the distorted thought or core belief; 2) Identify feelings, body sensations, and behaviors associated with the thought/belief; 3) List what makes the distorted thought/belief “True” in your mind; 4) List what makes it “Not True”; 5) Identify a more realistic thought/belief based on your analysis; and 6) Identify any change in feelings, body sensations, and potential behavior associated with the new realistic thought.

Most likely you will find the distorted thought/belief is not 100% true due to the “not true” statements; prompting you to develop a more realistic belief. Now imagine how you would behave with this new belief. Hopefully, you imagine responding with ease rather than reacting with dis-ease.

Practice, practice, practice are the key words for this skill to be effective. Also, the ability to regulate intense emotions via some practice of mindfulness, diaphragmatic breathing, grounding, or prayer is recommended. Keep in mind, disentangling our minds can take time and practice so be patient with yourself. It also takes persistence practice interrupting prior habitual and conditioned maladaptive thinking with the new realistic thought. The more you remind yourself of the Truth, the more you will believe the Truth; therefore, shifting your experience from suffering to peace.

MY EXPERIENCE USING THE COPING SKILL

 As I engaged in my morning routine, I noticed feelings of anger, low energy, and a cluttered mind spinning with incoherent thoughts and confusion. Hoping during the morning run with my dog, I would ground myself enough to begin disentangling my mind. However, I was becoming increasingly angry with my dog as she made numerous stops during the run. Note: a lab nose is a phenomenon and I’m assuming quite difficult for the dog to ignore the scents along their path.

Never the less even with this insight, my anger was increasing because the stops were not quick. It was as if she picked up the scent, analyzed its origins in her laboratory of a nose, and developed a conclusion by urinating on it. By this time, my heart rate decreased to almost a rest state and I was thinking “I’m not getting my work out”! So I reacted, by pulling on her leash and pushing her behind to get her going. She anxiously looked behind her with fear not realizing it was me who touched her and then sprinted forward. I didn’t like going to that measure to get what I wanted. I realized my feelings, body sensations, and maladaptive behavior were cuing me my mind was displaced from a balanced state. So I investigated my thoughts further during the remainder of the run.

I noticed the thought: “I always have to stop for you” came forward, but it actually went a little broader to: “I always have to stop for others’ needs”. But I knew, based on my own internal work, these thoughts were linked to a familiar core belief: “I’m unworthy” and in this case: “I’m unworthy of getting my needs met or taking care of myself”.

When I arrived home from the run, I challenged the beliefs. For the sake of the post length, I included an example of challenging both beliefs simultaneously. You may want to start challenging one thought/belief at a time as you learn this skill. The process unfolded as follows:

1) Distorted Thought/Belief:

“I always have to stop for others’ needs” and “I’m unworthy of getting my needs met or taking care of myself”. Note the extreme word always.

2) Feelings, Body Sensations, and Behaviors:

  • Feelings: primarily anger with sadness.
  • Body Sensations: clenched jaw, low energy, pain in left shoulder and neck.
  • Maladaptive Reaction: pulling and pushing my dog.

3) True Statements (for the Distorted Thought/Belief):

  • I do stop for my dog at least 3 x during the runs.
  • I always feel obligated to meet other’s needs prior to mine.
  • I’m always the listener.
  • I always have to sacrifice my time and energy for others.

4) Not True Statements (against the Distorted Thought/Belief):

  • Basically all the statements above using always are not 100% true.
  • I’m still getting a work out even if I stop during the runs. I have the option to leave my dog home if I want a more intense work out.
  • My dear daughter, family, and friends would be delighted and happy to listen to me IF I reach out to them.
  • I’m learning to establish boundaries like saying “no” without feeling guilty.
  • I’ve made major life decisions such as moving states two times and my daughter graciously flowed with the change and adapted well to each location. Thank you my Love :).
  • I’ve taken care of myself by slowing down my life; pursuing a creative endeavor that I feel absolutely passionate about; offering myself plenty of time for grounding outdoors; creating a beautiful sanctuary in my home; meditating and praying; receiving massages and energy healing; and going to movies.

5) Realistic Thought/Belief:

“I am worthy of having my needs met and taking care of myself” and “I’m able to meet both my and others’ needs with balance”.

6) Feelings, Body Sensations, and Behaviors:

  • Feelings: excitement and actual joy.
  • Body Sensations: jaw, neck, and shoulders relaxed, felt lighter in my body, and increased energy.
  • Adaptive Response: I was able to develop a plan that equally met my and others’ needs during the day. I asked myself “does this bring me joy?” in developing this plan. Knowing 100% reciprocity may not be the case every time, but just taking care of my needs in some manner during the exchange felt good!

Thank you Spirit for providing an opportunity for healing.

If so inclined, please support my work through Patreon:

https://www.patreon.com/divinehealingmastery

The purpose of this blog is to share with you how I integrate my professional mental health experience, personal experience, and spiritual awareness in the form of coping skills. By sharing my experience, it is my hope it will provide a practical example how to interrupt and eventually resolve the cyclic energy of suffering and to elevate your energy! Please visit my Facebook page: Divine Healing: Poetry and Coping Skills (https://www.facebook.com/DivineHealing.Poetry.Coping) or my website: http://divinehealingmastery.com to learn more about me and to read my poetry.

 PLEASE BE ADVISED

The coping skills provided in this blog are meant as a tool to aid in healing and not for psychotherapy or social work practice requiring a contractual, professional relationship. If you need consistent therapeutic care and/or crisis intervention due to being at risk of harming yourself or others, then seek professional and/or emergency services immediately.

These skills work best when you are ready to heal. It is OK if you are not quite ready. Please be gentle and patient with yourself. You will heal when you are ready. Sending you so much love, warmth, and compassion.

Kindly,

Stacy

© Stacy L. Pintor 2016. All Rights Reserved.

(No part of this blog may be reproduced without written permission from the author.)

HOW TO NURTURE YOURSELF THROUGH GRIEF

Grief is something quite familiar to me as I have experienced the loss of my husband, my father, and numerous life/identity changes. Grief is a natural response to any loss of attachment (i.e. death, divorce, moving, changing jobs, any life or identity change, etc.), which is an ending to a former way of life. The following are suggestions of skills I find beneficial in gracefully riding the waves of grief.

LOVE YOURSELF

A way to love yourself, is to give yourself permission to rest in your Divinity. Too often we are busy doing for others or distracting ourselves with endless stimuli to include self-defeating and limiting thoughts/beliefs. All the while your inner guidance is inviting you for a retreat within. This doesn’t have to be a lengthy activity, but a short respite lasting even a minute is helpful.

Centering or grounding yourself with breath, meditation, and/or prayer are ways of offering yourself a retreat. I enjoy utilizing intentions with diaphragmatic breathing. If you are not familiar with diaphragmatic breathing, then do a little research on the internet. There are numerous resources explaining the benefits of diaphragmatic breathing and how to apply the skill.

As I practice this deep breathing, I say intentions on the in-breath and on the out-breath. The following is an example of how this may work: with a deep inhale, say in your mind “I Am” and as you exhale say “Safe”; repeating on the in-breath: “I Am” and on the out-breath: “Calm”; breathing in “I Am” and breathing out “Peace”; and finally, breathing in “I Am” and breathing out “Love”.

The intentions are any words that lift your vibration. Once you are centered, imagine being embraced by complete love, warmth, and compassion. This imagery may include feelings, words, symbols, people living or deceased, yourself, spiritual beings, pets, light, or whatever resonates with you most.

ACKNOWLEDGE AND ACCEPT YOUR EMOTIONS

Acknowledging and accepting your emotions is key for allowing the emotion to naturally rise, flow through your body, and dissipate. It is helpful to use simple statements to identify the feelings such as: “I feel sad”, “Sad”, “Angry”, “Afraid”, or “I’m grieving”. By making these statements you are allowing the feeling to be present thus accepting its existence.

Simplifying the statements prevents the addition of negative storylines that may keep you stuck in a cycle of suffering. Negative storylines are additional thoughts or beliefs attached to the emotion; typically self-defeating or limiting in nature (i.e. “no one loves me”; “bad things always happen to me”; I’m not good enough”; “I’m always alone”; “I don’t deserve love” etc.). It is most likely if you investigate these beliefs you will find they are not 100% true, but tend to frequently lead the way. I will include another blog topic at a later date on how to challenge these storylines.

When we allow the emotion to be present without attachment of storylines, it passes naturally and without resistance. Imagine your emotions as water flowing with ease through a conduit (like your body). If a block is placed in the conduit, then the water will back up and stop flowing eventually causing stagnation. Stagnation can harbor dis-ease. By releasing the blocks with love, Divine energy may once again flow with ease.

Unraveling our minds does take practice so be patient and kind with yourself. It is detrimental to “hate” the self-defeating thoughts/beliefs because it perpetuates the cycle of suffering. As you become aware of negative storylines, gently and compassionately return to the practice described above as if you are guiding a child or someone/something you adore. Remind yourself they are just thoughts NOT you.

REACH OUT

Grief at times has a tendency to make you feel quite isolated. By reaching out you remind yourself although you feel lonely you are never alone. Spirit is always with us and manifests both in the seen and unseen worlds.

Ask someone you trust to send you positive energy or prayers, to listen, and to validate your feelings. This someone or multiple beings can be living, transitioned (deceased), angels, spirit guides, ascended masters, pets, or whomever resonates with you and has the ability to provide positive support.

By reaching out, you share the burden of your grief and offer another being an opportunity of giving and you an opportunity of receiving. It is a reciprocal exchange of love and a way of helping you feel deserving of love. In addition, you are offering yourself another opportunity to acknowledge/accept your feelings by bringing difficult emotions from the darkness to the light with the help of another. Other effective ways of reaching out in addition to or instead of verbal means include: journaling, automatic writing, poetry, or writing a letter.

Finally, express gratitude for their and your own support. Gratitude is an excellent way to raise your vibrational frequency and elevate your energy.

MY EXPERIENCE USING THE COPING SKILLS

I woke feeling depleted and irritable. Immediately the thought, “what is this now?”, was present in my mind as I noticed the tone of my internal voice was a bit edgy and quite annoyed. I got up to start the morning routine while closely monitoring and observing my internal state. I knew based on my own inner work when I felt fatigued it was cuing me of an attachment to limiting thoughts/beliefs.

I experimented by using gratitude to raise my vibration and began repeating, “I adore my life”, as I was making my daughter’s breakfast and lunch for school. Yes, it was beginning to shift the negative energy, but the block was deeper. Something was emerging from the darkness wanting to see the light. I noticed under the feeling of irritation there was sadness. And then it hit me, my daughter is turning 15 years old this month, will be starting driver’s education to obtain her learner’s permit, and once again my late husband is not here the way we want for yet another huge milestone.

“I’m doing this ALL alone, AGAIN” was the thought cycling in my mind. And then the old storylines came rushing up as if an internal dam broke (i.e. “I always have to be strong for everyone else”; “I always have to do it alone”). I found myself plummeting into the darkness as these storylines attached themselves to my emotions like heavy concrete blocks. I noticed my breathing changed and was quite shallow. I dropped numerous items in the kitchen because my mind was spinning with self-defeating thoughts.

Taking a deep breath, I slowed it enough to interrupt the cyclic energy. I said out loud, “I will nurture myself”, noticing my tone was loving, but strong. I centered with breath and imagined a beautiful warm, golden light surrounding and holding me. Upon this imagery, I noticed two hands coming towards mine and gently embraced them. I sensed it was him, my late husband, supporting me. I stated, “I’m grieving”, with no other thoughts or beliefs attached to the statement. I literally felt as though the bondages of the storylines unraveled and fell to the floor. My mind was clear, my breathing was deeper, and I could feel my vibration lifting, opening my heart.

After I dropped my daughter off at school, I decided to reach out to my best friend and my mother requesting positive energy and prayers. For me, allowing others to share my experience is a working progress. They both lovingly validated my feelings.

My best friend offered a different perspective of my experience and reminded me the excitement of this rite of passage (learning to drive). She also reminded me to recall our experience at that age allowing me to awaken my inner child; remembering the many laughs we shared. My mother and I discussed the trap of staying stuck in negativity and the importance of honoring your feelings; allowing them to flow and pass without unnecessary blocks.

The results from this practice was movement out of the cycle of suffering and movement towards a higher vibration of love and compassion for my experience. The sadness passed with ease without hindrance and actual excitement arose.

At times during the day, my old negative storylines were tempting me back, but I gently interrupted the pattern with shorter/briefer versions of the practice above. Rather than projecting negativity towards my daughter, I was able to reverberate excitement and happiness in order to aid her anxiety and fear of this rite of passage (Learning to Drive!!!).

Thank you Spirit for providing an opportunity for healing.

If so inclined, please support my work through Patreon:

https://www.patreon.com/divinehealingmastery

The purpose of this blog is to share with you how I integrate my professional mental health experience, personal experience, and spiritual awareness in the form of coping skills. By sharing my experience, it is my hope it will provide a practical example how to interrupt and eventually resolve the cyclic energy of suffering and to elevate your energy! Please visit my Facebook page: Divine Healing: Poetry and Coping Skills (https://www.facebook.com/DivineHealing.Poetry.Coping) or my website: http://divinehealingmastery.com to learn more about me and to read my poetry.

PLEASE BE ADVISED

The coping skills provided in this blog are meant as a tool to aid in healing and not for psychotherapy or social work practice requiring a contractual, professional relationship. If you need consistent therapeutic care and/or crisis intervention due to being at risk of harming yourself or others, then seek professional and/or emergency services immediately.

These skills work best when you are ready to heal. It is OK if you are not quite ready. Please be gentle and patient with yourself. You will heal when you are ready. Sending you so much love, warmth, and compassion.

Kindly,

Stacy

© Stacy L. Pintor 2016. All Rights Reserved.

(No part of this blog may be reproduced without written permission from the author.)

HOW TO CHANGE PAINFUL MEMORIES WITH LOVE

The following coping skill is a way to positively transform memories. I found the use of this skill to be quite beneficial in my personal experience which I will share below. But first a brief synopsis of the skill.

When you notice or become aware of any painful feelings and thoughts arising from the depths of your soul, investigate the origins. Ensure you are in a place where you feel safe and have minimal to no distractions as you explore your internal state. It is recommended that you already practice some type of mindfulness, meditation, and/or diaphragmatic breathing prior to applying this skill in order to ground yourself, so you can tolerate painful feelings and/or any physiological reactions associated with memories.

If you find the feelings and thoughts are associated with a painful memory, enter the memory, but rather than pushing it back into the darkness; flood the memory with love and light both with imagery and with all your senses. If the memory involves violence or abuse, I suggest take cleansing breaths, ground yourself utilizing your own unique practice, and encase yourself with love, light, and protection.

The resolution of your memory may have different thoughts and feelings than the example provided below. Even if the memory has a little less pain associated with it, I believe it is a success. You can continue to work on it in order to completely re-file it with love and light.

Note this skill requires your readiness to heal and to release attachment to pain (guilt, shame, unworthiness, anger, etc.). If you aren’t quite ready, be gentle and patient with yourself and try it another time.

MY EXPERIENCE USING THE COPING SKILL

My teen daughter left for a school event to be away for two nights. I was feeling a lot of anxiety and fear about her leaving on this trip as if something “bad” would happen. As I stood in my kitchen, I decided to explore these feelings. I asked myself, “are these feelings and thoughts surfacing solely for this event?” I answered “No” and went deeper. “Ah yes, I remember this”. I felt this when I dropped my late husband off to his military unit in the early morning of March 2004 for his deployment to Iraq.

This original memory was filed with painful feelings and fear-based thoughts because my husband did not return home the way we wanted him to return. He was killed in action. At this point, I had a choice to either push the memory back down into the darkness or to flood it with love. So I entered the memory with some resistance, but decided to stay with it.

I saw him standing there in his Desert uniform smiling at me. And rather than approaching him with extreme sadness and fear, I embraced him filled with deep love. Holding him tightly with joy as if our embrace was radiating beams of golden and white light. I repeated “I love you” over and over again. And said goodbye bursting with love rather than sadness and fear.

The memory naturally faded and was re-filed with love and NOT pain. I realized my daughter’s trip was a trigger for this memory to be healed. And even now when I recall this memory it comes forward with love and actual joy rather than pain and loss.

Thank you Spirit for providing an opportunity for healing.

If so inclined, please support my work through Patreon:

https://www.patreon.com/divinehealingmastery

The purpose of this blog is to share with you how I integrate my professional mental health experience, personal experience, and spiritual awareness in the form of coping skills. By sharing my experience, it is my hope it will provide a practical example how to interrupt and eventually resolve the cyclic energy of suffering and to elevate your energy! Please visit my Facebook page: Divine Healing: Poetry and Coping Skills (https://www.facebook.com/DivineHealing.Poetry.Coping) or my website: http://divinehealingmastery.com to learn more about me and to read my poetry.

 PLEASE BE ADVISED

The coping skills provided in this blog are meant as a tool to aid in healing and not for psychotherapy or social work practice requiring a contractual, professional relationship. If you need consistent therapeutic care and/or crisis intervention due to being at risk of harming yourself or others, then seek professional and/or emergency services immediately.

These skills work best when you are ready to heal. It is OK if you are not quite ready. Please be gentle and patient with yourself. You will heal when you are ready. Sending you so much love, warmth, and compassion.

Kindly,

Stacy

© Stacy L. Pintor 2016. All Rights Reserved.

(No part of this blog may be reproduced without written permission from the author.)