Checking in

Where are you right now in this moment? Maybe I caught you in a moment of peace and understanding? Maybe you are overwhelmed with hopelessness or somewhere in between? A friend and coworker sent me this article with an emoji.

Coronavirus Briefing from the New York Times

It came at the right time for me. We’ve all read many articles and listened to podcasts on this topic. This one hit home for me.

The life events that have directly impacted my family along with supporting friends and family through this crisis have taken their toll.

We are different people.

We see the world differently.

We have tried to adapt and adjust to the point of exhuastion.

Right now I’m in a space with loved ones taking one day at a time. There is beauty. I close my eyes and hear the locusts, the birds, and feel the breeze coming through the window. I’m amazed at interruptions to my quiet time that I invite in because I know it’s God working. A text message, a song, a page of Bible study, and a weekly email from a psychologist about change and accepting reality all come together to move us in a positive direction. I look up and see my bedroom light casting a “star” which is so meaningful to me. I look out my window and see Vivian’s tree blooming.

I’m purposeful in changing and learning because I know my life will always be an unfinished symphony. I play this song, change the rhythm, and add verses. I’m created for unfinished business. There is no place in my life that is done. Done on this earth is me in the presence of God. So, my house is messy, relationships need mending, and I’m still working on self compassion. My current job has so many folders, lists, and uncertainty that I question my competency. Like others, my memory, skills, and ability to connect are stymied by the ongoing trauma. A recent incident in which we had to call 911 due to our home filled with smoke and a burning, chemical smell while we were sleeping brought terror to my heart and mind. It’s been almost two weeks since that occurrence, and I am slowly adapting, shifting, and keeping it moving. It changed me.

I saw an email from a professional blogger who provides ongoing content for one of our training groups. The title? “I’m sad.” Thank you for being honest.

I’m not without hope.

My husband is outside with a ladder against the house installing a bathroom exhaust fan. One item in a litany of things to do in this unfinished symphony. It will take him all day to do this one thing. Not because he is not skilled. Oh no. He is brilliant and capable. It just takes time.

John 14:21 tells me that God will make Himself real to me–reveal Himself to me. The Greek for reveal is “to exhibit, to appear in person, to declare”. (Priscilla Shirer, Discerning the Voice of God, p. 34)

God reveal yourself to me. To us. To all those in my life who are so loved and cherished.

Help us be okay with our unfinished symphony.

“If I find in myself a desire which no experience in this world can satisfy, the most probable explanation is that I was made for another world.” C.S. Lewis

My daughter and I were texting this morning of escaping to our own anime world with our characters of choice: Raggedy Ann, My Little Pony, a unicorn named Priscilla, the Pink Panther, and a sheep dog with “Tony the groomer”. Humor is so important right now.

I so desperately want Him to reveal Himself to me as I work through this life on my way home. The word “regret” is such a negative word to me until I heard someone share the positive side to feelings of regret. Regret is hopeful. How? It is hopeful because regret puts me in a space of wanting to change or something better. Regret becomes dangerous when we ruminate and resist change.

Why We Can’t Shake Life’s ‘Coulda, Woulda, Shoulda’ Moments (Hidden Brain Podcast)

The practical side of me desires to share the email I received this morning to give you some tools to work with as you face your new normal. To subscribe to Lynne’s newsletter go here.

9/6/2021 Today’s Newsletter by Lynne Namka

The research shows that certain actions create a healthy, happy life no matter if the diagnosis is anger-management problems, bi-polar disorder, borderline personality disorder, schizophrenia, depression, anxiety or if you are just a regular Joe or Jane with emotions. These behavioral choices can be made when we have any strong feeling or unhealthy behaviors that make a difference:

1. Accept that you have a problem and accept the reality of your life.

2. Educate yourself about the problem. (Self-help books, therapy or Google the problem.)

3. Bring the symptom to a conscious level. Be mindful and don’t judge it. Stay in the present moment. (Mindfulness training and meditation calm your mind.)

4. Address triggers and warning signs that set your issue off and learn to decrease them. (Energy Psychology techniques help here.)

5. Manage the overall stress in your environment using exercise, deep breathing, yoga, tai chi, chi Quong, nature activities, etc.

6. Correct errors in thinking and false assumptions. (Cognitive Behavioral techniques help here.)

7. Practice affect regulation techniques to decrease emotional arousal. (Stepping back and taking a deep breath before reacting helps.)

8. Learn and use healthy communication strategies in your relationships. (See my article Fair Fighting at my website)

9. Forgive yourself for your mistakes in the past and learn from them. (EFT and the Tapas Acupressure Technique are two of the many Energy Psychology techniques that help with forgiveness.)

10. Make personal and spiritual goals an ongoing part of your life. Practice healthy skills of coping and acting.

We all have problems; it is what we do with them that counts. Watch the movie, The Beautiful Mind, about a genius who had schizophrenia and heard voices. His giving them importance ruined his life. Then he took a different view. The wisdom of this movie emphasizes that he finally came to accept his symptoms but not give in to them. The man ignored the voices or challenged them and they lost their power over him!  You can do the same thing with your unwanted emotions.

Get a Plan: Ten Ways to Deal with your Problem

1. I accept that I have the problem of _____ and choose to deal with it by telling myself_____

2. I educate myself about it through:

3. Mindfully I watch what precedes its activation of the symptoms of the problem by:

4. I address triggers and warning signs that set it off and decrease them by:

5. I manage stress in my environment by:

6. I correct my errors in thinking about_____

7. I regulate my intense emotions by:

8. The healthy communication strategy I need to learn and practice is:

9. I forgive myself for making this particular mistake in the past by:

10. The lesson I need to learn today is:     My plan for healthy ways of dealing with this lesson is:      

Peace and joy,        Lynne Namka, Happy Psychologist

I’d love to shared a beautiful song for meditation.

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