Sometimes you have to make an effort to find hope. You can be going along, doing what you know to do, and then out of nowhere something hits you making you doubt the sun will come up again. Having some nuggets of inspiration tucked away can help you find the hope you need to keep going.
I went to sleep singing. I woke up singing. Despite the bad weather outside telling me it was a bad day or the struggles of daily life trying to pull me down, I had hope.
Until I didn’t.
It’s amazing how that happens. You wake up all bright and sunshiny – no matter what the weather – and out of left field comes the storm clouds that turn your day of possibility into a nightmare of grey yuck.
This time, it was the perfect storm of things – money, past losses, and actual bad weather.
My Father-in-law passed away last year. This is our second holiday season without him. Last year, the wounds were fresh and sometimes the fresh the wound the less the impact. Once the wound begins to heal over, it starts to itch.
The emptiness we feel after a loss never completely goes away. Some days it is a hollow echo. Some days it is an itching scab. Somedays it is a phantom pain that screams for attention.
My Mother passed away over six years ago. She loved the holidays and she loved having family gathered around.
So now, knowing that Christmas is a moment away, I’m feeling the hollow ache of both of their losses.
Pile on to that the annoyance of an insurance company that won’t follow up or follow-through (or basically do anything to make us think we might be in good hands).
And finally, top it off with a windy, rainy, yucky day that keeps rocking the window with its bluster.
I wanted to quit. It’s the end of the week and after lunch, so why not quit.
I looked to my left – on the wall just above my desk – and read this declaration:
I AM MAKING CHOICES TO LIVE HAPPY AND HEALTHY
It’s my choice. I can give in to the grey or I can demand the sun. I choose to demand the sun.
Smile – do what it takes to create a smile on your face. Ask others to share their favorite inspiration or fun moment. Turn on your favorite song or sitcom clip. Laugh, joke, or dance – but make sure you find a smile.
*I shared a request on Facebook and my friends had some great responses!*
Talk to yourself – talking out loud can help calm you. Give yourself a pep talk or remind yourself of the positive things you encountered before the grey gained control. You may want to find some alone space to do this – people have a tendency to stare if you do it around them (unless you are wearing a Bluetooth phone . . . in which case talk away).
Write it out – write out your struggle. Just like talking it out can help calm the heart, writing it out can help you begin to find your way through.
Read it – keep a record of your blessings and inspirations and let each one reinvigorate your joy and peace.
Reach out – connect with a friend or mentor and ask for some hope. Hope is not depleted in its sharing. It grows and multiplies. People in hope want to share hope to grow more.
No matter how bad it may look or feel in the moment, you have hope at your fingertips or maybe it’s sitting to your left above your desk. When the going gets tough, take a moment to find hope so that you can keep going!
You’ve got this!