Gratefulness is a powerful remedy for depression and anger. While this is a seemingly easy concept, being grateful is easier said than done; especially on days when everything appears to be going wrong. When life appears to be in pure chaos, how can you find something to be grateful for, and what will gratefulness do for the chaos? Both are great questions, so let’s break them down.
Have you ever had a day where you feel as though you are not good enough? You swear you can sense people believe you are not good enough based on the looks they give you or the way they are acting. Sometimes it’s as if the voices never stop telling you how worthless, pathetic, and unimportant you are. Fortunately, and unfortunately, there is a term for this, and many people struggle with this very issue. The very issue I am talking about is shame.
“You saved my life.” Those were the words she spoke as I looked into her water filled eyes. Those four words sent from the bottom of her heart, touched my soul as we connected on a spiritual level. Silence filled the room as I searched for a proper response. I felt a shiver travel up my spine. My eyes watered slightly from the intensity of the moment – a rarity in my office. I replied, “You’re welcome. Your life has value and purpose to me.”
Remember the words to that old Elvis song, “I’ll have a blue Christmas without you”? Did you feel like that this year? Maybe you lost a loved one, got divorced, or moved away from your friends and family; the thought of a jolly holiday and bright new year seems like a distant memory.
“It’s paradoxical that the idea of living a long life appeals to everyone, but the idea of getting old doesn’t appeal to anyone.” ― Andy Rooney
Yesterday was Christmas Day or at least that’s what the calendar showed. Before 1991, Miss Lib has celebrated Christmas and all the other holidays with her husband and family members. After her husband’s death in 1992, her children left the house. 25 years later, Miss Lib, now 83 yrs old rarely leaves her own home. Coming of age in the Great Depression and WWII, Lib learned self-reliance and fortitude. Lib’s husband of many years died over two decades ago and her three adult children live over an hour’s drive away and seldom visit.
It’s that time of year again. That time of year filled with many holiday gatherings, things to do, places to go, and people to see. But now we are here and it’s the holiday season and everyone everywhere is wanting, wishing and hoping for a good time. We often have higher expectations for this season than for any other time of the year. The holiday season of “Great Expectations” can leave us feeling impatient, cranky, and — in some cases — depressed.