For many years I was an aggressive optimist—Forcing every negative emotion into a positive one, then marveling as to why my train of thought and state of mind would not mend. Lo and behold, the hurt did not go away, and the negativity continued to expand until I could not recognize myself anymore. I was cowardly running away from my emotions, and all they were trying to do was catch up to teach me something.
This blog post is inspired by my hysterics—Particularly yesterdays. I burst out into tears at every opportunity of a sad thought. From the moment I woke up, to the time I fell asleep. If I could put a number estimate on it, well, I couldn’t, because it was relentless. I felt so overwhelmed. But for the first time in a few months, my unceasing sobbing provided me with clarity. I was washing away all of which I resisted. And it resulted in my soul feeling renewed and easy. These overcoming moments continue grounding me, teaching me that sadness and anger are fundamental to our balance and wellbeing. Suppressing negative emotions result in them backfiring on us, leaving us on misery autopilot. Sadness continues to better me, and continues educating me in the hardest lesson many of us have to learn—Letting go.
Misfortune transforms into gratitude
No matter who you lose, what you lose, and how you lose it, there’s only one guarantee. That you will be thankful for what you have after the damage has been done. Many times after we lose something that was important to us, we tend to become low-functioning and disconcerted. And then somehow down the line, whether it’s a month, a year, or 5 years, everything begins to make sense. There’s always a gift from loss, and although you won’t see it through your trying period, there will come a time that you will.
“I am grateful for all those dark years, even though in retrospect they seem like a long, bitter prayer that was answered finally.” – Marilynne Robinson
Engage in creativity
You don’t have to be a good painter, singer, dancer, cook, or writer to be an artist. Because you already are. The entirety of a human being is art. From the way we love people, to our quirks and mannerisms—We are infinitely creating and endlessly manifesting the craft of life. And because of this, finding a release we can call home is profoundly therapeutic. Whether it’s drawing or volunteering at your local shelter, your medium of expression will move you closer to your truth.
“She never looked nice, she looked like art, and art wasn’t supposed to look nice; it was supposed to make you feel something.” – Rainbow Rowell
The word ‘surrender’ is deeply intimidating, because it means letting go of who you’ve been comfortable living as. Truly accepting and releasing your negative emotions eliminates your façade and leaves you vulnerable, because it transforms your way of thinking. I think this is the real measure of strength—Being open to change, then changing. Rebirth and flourish, baby. You can be whoever you want to be.
“I let it go. It’s like swimming against the current. It exhausts you. After a while, whoever you are, you just have to let go, and the river brings you home.” – Joanne Harris