Get it out of your head

One of the worse things you can do to yourself, is keep everything locked up inside your head. I know sometimes it’s hard to talk to people about the insanity of our lives…especially when we are not in a good place. However, nothing good comes from locking it all up on the inside.  We tend to get wrapped up with what’s wrong and it seems hopeless.

Ideally, talking to someone is best.  Not just anyone though….talking to people who also feel hopeless, unable to get a grip on their own life is not going to help you. What you need is someone who can take the emotion of the situation out, and see it with a clear mind.  If you are lucky enough to have a friend who you trust, and that can listen and support you then open up to them. If not, find a counselor.  Trust me when I say the simple act of saying out loud what you feel on the inside is tremendously healing.

I started counseling after I hit rock bottom, and realized that anti depressant drugs where not the answer for me. I spent a lot of time crying in that room.  Sometimes as soon as I would open my mouth, the tears would start to flow.  I never felt judged.  I was able to open up and let the flood of emotions out. I was able to finally deal with things that I had locked up inside for years. Opening up allowed me to get some space and healing. There were weeks that all I did was cry.  For one hour, I could stop being strong, stop taking responsibility for feeling horrible, and just let it all out..Many times I was all over the place. I was in my mid 30’s when I first stated counseling, so there was certainly a lot of pent up emotions. Most of my life I had held myself responsible for everything bad that happened in my relationships.  I talked about my  mother, my father, my husband, being a mother, dating as a teenager, sex, thoughts of suicide, running away…and many more things.  These were things I couldn’t even tell my best friend, but now was telling a complete stranger.  It was remarkable.  Finally I was able to take a look at each and every “problem’ without the emotional attachment. The counselor was able to  help me see that I had taken on a lot of crap that was not mine to take.

This time was an investment in me, in  my well being. It was not cheap, but it was priceless. I was finally able to see clearly things that seems so muddled and desperate. Things I learned about myself, my reasoning and my expectations became invaluable when it came to dealing with the destructive relationships in my life.  For once I could look at a situation, and see it without the damaging though patterns I had developed. I was able to see that a lot of the stuff that I felt, was simply just that…thoughts. Not reality.  What was hard, was knowing that some of my relationships were about to change.  Deep inside I hoped for the better, but knew for some, it would not be so easy.  I also knew I was going to have to become my own advocate in these relationships, and that it was not going to be pretty…some people were not going to like it.  However, I had solace knowing I could come back to this room, let it out, and get a clear understanding of what was taking place.

I will get more into the lessons I learned in counseling later on.

If you don’t have someone in  your life you feel comfortable confiding in, then you need to journal. Getting those thoughts out of your head helps free up space to work on solutions.  It allows you to get all those ugly  ideas out of your mind. You can look back and get a more clear perspective on your feelings as well. One thing about keeping things locked inside, is that they tend to get a life of their own. It can get to a point where you become obsessed with those negative thoughts or sense of hopelessness.

It’s gonna get ugly.  That’s ok. It’s a safe place. I recommend getting every single ugly though out onto paper.  There were times that I felt extremely hopeless.  I wanted to run away. Literally!  Sometimes I would be driving on the highway, and think to myself, “just keep going. Don’t stop. By the time anyone realizes you’re gone you will be miles and miles away.. No one cares anyway.”  Running away wouldn’t solve any problems, it would create more. There were people who would care. My children for one. How can they understand such a selfish act like that. How could they ever be ok knowing I abandoned them.

It was not a pretty thought. It was a desperate plea to myself, and the heavens for a way out of my misery.  I couldn’t keep those ideas locked up in my head…so out they came. I could open my journal and be real about how I was feeling…I could write down my depest desires and fantasies. I could allow my imagination to run free…and no one would get hurt.  Eventually, when you get the bad stuff out, solutions begin to present themselves.

Letting all those negative feelings out of our head allows you to stop letting them control you, and sometimes, they don’t seem as big as they did locked up in our mind.  Once that space is free, you’re mind is able to focus on something else. Sometimes it is more negative thoughts or emotions…and that’s ok. Get them out until you’re free. Then let yourself look for the solutions. Most times, things are not nearly as bad as we think when we let our imagination have freedom.

Eventually, things will not seem so overwhelming.  Once you get a little mental peace…it’s time to start focusing on some solutions.  Running away, is not a solution, it’s a cop out.  What I needed most was to figure out what I had control of, and admit what I didn’t.  I needed to spend more time on working on making things better, and less time on how hopeless it all was, or more specifically, how it seemed. Clarity will come once you allow the space for it.

Quick and easy…got to the dollar store and get a journal, or 5. They don’t have to be pretty…they are just blank pages that you will fill in.

If you are interested in counseling, look into it. At the time I started, I was with an HMO.  I had told my Dr about my feelings of depression and asked for a referral for counseling. I got it, and looked up who was in my area.  Now, here is where you have to take a little leap of faith. The counselor I was hooked up with was not what I expected. It was a christian group, and I was afraid of being “converted”.   As a matter of fact, I cancelled my appointment, and didn’t call back for several months.

I’m glad I did call back. You have to just open up to the possibilities that the Universe has big plans for you…and it wants to help.  So, don’t judge…just go.  If you have a personality conflict, then change counselors…The idea is to have a safe place to go and open up.  Have faith, and just go with it.

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