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Monday, May 21, 2012

Holistic Approach to Overcoming Thoughts of Suicide

I found this article to be very much inline with the concepts we put forward in our inspirational support group approach to recovery and wellness.  Be well and live well!

Overcoming Thoughts of Suicide

  By Linney Elder

"You are given the gift of the gods; you create your reality according to your beliefs; yours is the creative energy that makes your world; there are no limitations to the self except those you believe in."- JANE ROBERTS - SETH

Chronic sadness, or grief, if not understood and dealt with may lead to depression and eventually to thoughts of suicide. I've been there.I know what it feels like and how hard it is to pull yourself back from that awful dark place.

I've experienced feelings of hopelessness in varying degrees from despondence, to despair and if I look back I can see the downward spiral of events that took me into the pit of depression.

Darkness is defined as the "absence of light".Surely then the way to combat the darkness is to "turn on the light".

The light could take the form of an idea or goal, a person,a book, a piece of music, an inspiring movie, or holistic healing of some kind.

When I was experiencing chronic depression, I didn't understand what was happening at first. I was experiencing all sorts of physical symptoms as well as depressing, dark thoughts.

I couldn't sleep, I lost my appetite, and I jumped for the slightest reason and had panic attacks when my heart would race. I cried for the slightest reason, I lost my train of thought in the middle of sentences, my concentration levels in general dropped, I felt tired all the time and my eyes were red, sunken and black ringed.

My skin colour became pasty. My hair was lifeless with no shine. I dragged myself out of bed and through my days. Basically, I hated my life and the person I had become. I could see no way forward out of the dark space I was in and that just made everything so much worse. I felt dreadfully alone. I didn't think anyone cared, or understood how awful I was feeling.

The harder I tried to do everything right and keep everyone happy, the more exhausted I felt and the worse the downward spiral became.

I eventually went to my local library in desperation and found various books on stress and depression, and that was where I began to  recognise the symptoms I was experiencing. I realised I needed help, but I was so glad to find that I was not losing my mind after all!

Then a good friend suggested I might try a session of hypnotherapy, to help me relax. Hypno what? I had never tried anything like that before and felt a bit silly having to explain to a stranger why I was sitting in his therapy room. But as we talked I began to release the pent up emotions of frustration and anger, hopelessness and despair. Gradually, the cleansing tears began to flow and the healing process began.

I went for three sessions of hypnotherapy and they really did save my life. It helped me to relax initially, then to go into a deeper relaxed space where I could let go of some of the stress and finally into a very deep state where I found absolute peace.

It helped me to see things more objectively and to realise that I had been putting all the pressure on myself. The choices were all down to me. I didn't need to be the perfect wife, mother, daughter, sister,secretary and all the rest...

I immediately requested a transfer at work to a less pressured position, shortened my work hours a bit, stopped being so fussy and servile at home and learned to take one day at a time. I discovered homeopathic Rescue Remedy drops for those moments when I could feel myself becoming tense and over-emotional. I learned the value of deep breathing when panic attacks threatened to overwhelm me.

I began taking the dogs for walks on the beach and getting out more. I started painting and doing creative hobbies, which I found relaxing. I began writing in my journals again, which was such a therapeutic way for me to safely express what I was feeling, knowing that only I would read it.

Then I discovered the benefits of meditation. I could feel I was on my way back to a more balanced, happier, relaxed outlook. It took a long while, a lot of patience and inner-work, but I eventually began to like my life again - bit by bit.

The following words describe the downward and subsequent upward spiral that I experienced while going through depression and then finding my way back to the light.

Downwards:

• Fear

• Frustration

• Anger

• Overwhelmed / controlled

• Blame

• Hate

• Trapped

• Despondency

• Hopelessness

• Loneliness

• Despair

• Suicide

Upwards:

• Acceptance

• Surrender

• Face the fears

• Take responsibility

• Seek help moving forward - mental, emotional and physical

• Understand

• Express - creatively

• Release beliefs / people

*  Forgiveness

• Learn to love / respect yourself

• Set new personal boundaries

• Surround yourself with positive people / community

• Plan

• List of achievable goals

• Take action - co-create your life one small step at a time

• Fun and Joy!

If you are experiencing thoughts of such hopelessness that you would rather cease living, you need to talk to someone right away! Don't wait. Find someone, anyone, to talk to. It often happens that a problem shared and worked through with someone else's loving, non-judgmental input can help  you to find clarity and a way forward.

Overcoming thoughts of suicide is possible! Suicide is not the answer.

I wish you blessings of light.

Linney

Friday, May 11, 2012

No Day but Today

No Day but Today
By Will Norrid
All of us have fond memories of what might be called the victory moments of our lives.  A wedding, a birthday, a graduation or a special vacation may stand out in our memories.  We may often recall that occasion and may perhaps wish longingly to go back and experience that happiness all over again.  Each of us also have negative memories.  We may spend time wishing to go back in time to accept a job offer, work on a marriage, make a better choice or do something different.  Whether good memories or bad ones, it is sometimes easy to want to go back to the past.
One area of our life that is uncertain is our future.  We may plan and plot, but there is actually no way to predict what may come in our lives.  Some people live expectantly looking forward to what they are sure are better days ahead.  Others live in dread of the fact that the future may be bleak and dark.  Either looking ahead to joys yet to come or fearing the unknowable future is the everyday existence of many people.
In all honesty, the only moment in life that is real for us is the present one.  We cannot change anything in our pasts and we have limited control over our futures.  So many people are caught up in regret that they miss the gift that the present truly is.  So many others are looking ahead and robbing today of its joy.  Despite what we sometimes think, we cannot add one length to our lives by fretfulness.
When Moses asked God for His name, God responded that he should tell the children of Israel that His name is "I AM THAT I AM."  God exists apart from time.  He is always in the present tense.  In God's eternal mind, all concept of past, present and future is suspended for Him.  He only uses time to relate to we who are mortal.
I would suggest that we need a view of time that is more like God's view.  Realizing that all our experiences have shaped us, we can cease from regret and wishful reminiscence.  Every choice, for good or bad, has brought you to this moment.  You cannot change those choices, but now, here in time, you can choose not to be dominated by them.  You cannot choose the future, but you can choose to live in your present without fear.
As the character John Keating so famously said in the film Dead Poets' Society, "Carpe Diem!  Seize the day, boys.  Make your lives extraordinary."  We all have the ability, by living for today, to make something beautiful out of our lives.  No matter where we start from, if we embrace the present, we can truly be the people that God wants us to be.
Will Norrid

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Excellent News Article on Our 10th Anniversary Celebration

 

Overcoming Thoughts of Suicide

I found this article to be very much inline with the concepts we put forward in our inspirational support group approach to recovery and wellness.  Be well and live well!
Overcoming Thoughts of Suicide

  By Linney Elder

 
 "You are given the gift of the gods; you create your reality according to your beliefs; yours is the creative energy that makes your world; there are no limitations to the self except those you believe in." - JANE ROBERTS - SETH

 

Chronic sadness, or grief, if not understood and dealt with may lead to depression and eventually to thoughts of suicide. I've been there. I know what it feels like and how hard it is to pull yourself back from that awful dark place.

 I've experienced feelings of hopelessness in varying degrees from despondence, to despair and if I look back I can see the downward spiral of events that took me into the pit of depression.

 Darkness is defined as the "absence of light". Surely then the way to combat the darkness is to "turn on the light".

 The light could take the form of an idea or goal, a person, a book, a piece of music, an inspiring movie, or holistic healing of some kind.

 When I was experiencing chronic depression, I didn't understand what was happening at first. I was experiencing all sorts of physical symptoms as well as depressing, dark thoughts.

 I couldn't sleep, I lost my appetite, and I jumped for the slightest reason and had panic attacks when my heart would race. I cried for the slightest reason, I lost my train of thought in the middle of sentences, my concentration levels in general dropped, I felt tired all the time and my eyes were red, sunken and black ringed.

 My skin colour became pasty. My hair was lifeless with no shine. I dragged myself out of bed and through my days. Basically, I hated my life and the person I had become. I could see no way forward out of the dark space I was in and that just made everything so much worse. I felt dreadfully alone. I didn't think anyone cared, or understood how awful I was feeling.

 The harder I tried to do everything right and keep everyone happy, the more exhausted I felt and the worse the downward spiral became.

 I eventually went to my local library in desperation and found various books on stress and depression, and that was where I began to recognise the symptoms I was experiencing. I realised I needed help, but I was so glad to find that I was not losing my mind after all!

 Then a good friend suggested I might try a session of hypnotherapy, to help me relax. Hypno what? I had never tried anything like that before and felt a bit silly having to explain to a stranger why I was sitting in his therapy room. But as we talked I began to release the pent up emotions of frustration and anger, hopelessness and despair. Gradually, the cleansing tears began to flow and the healing process began.

 I went for three sessions of hypnotherapy and they really did save my life. It helped me to relax initially, then to go into a deeper relaxed space where I could let go of some of the stress and finally into a very deep state where I found absolute peace.

 It helped me to see things more objectively and to realise that I had been putting all the pressure on myself. The choices were all down to me. I didn't need to be the perfect wife, mother, daughter, sister, secretary and all the rest...

 I immediately requested a transfer at work to a less pressured position, shortened my work hours a bit, stopped being so fussy and servile at home and learned to take one day at a time. I discovered homeopathic Rescue Remedy drops for those moments when I could feel myself becoming tense and over-emotional. I learned the value of deep breathing when panic attacks threatened to overwhelm me.

 I began taking the dogs for walks on the beach and getting out more. I started painting and doing creative hobbies, which I found relaxing. I began writing in my journals again, which was such a therapeutic way for me to safely express what I was feeling, knowing that only I would read it.

 Then I discovered the benefits of meditation. I could feel I was on my way back to a more balanced, happier, relaxed outlook. It took a long while, a lot of patience and inner-work, but I eventually began to like my life again - bit by bit.

 The following words describe the downward and subsequent upward spiral that I experienced while going through depression and then finding my way back to the light.

 Downwards:

 • Fear

 • Frustration

 • Anger

 • Overwhelmed / controlled

 • Blame

 • Hate

 • Trapped

 • Despondency

 • Hopelessness

 • Loneliness

 • Despair

 • Suicide

 Upwards:

 • Acceptance

 • Surrender

 • Face the fears

 • Take responsibility

 • Seek help moving forward - mental, emotional and physical

 • Understand

 • Express - creatively

 • Release beliefs / people

Forgiveness

 • Learn to love / respect yourself

 • Set new personal boundaries

 • Surround yourself with positive people / community

 • Plan

 • List of achievable goals

 • Take action - co-create your life one small step at a time

 • Fun and Joy!

 If you are experiencing thoughts of such hopelessness that you would rather cease living, you need to talk to someone right away! Don't wait. Find someone, anyone, to talk to. It often happens that a problem shared and worked through with someone else's loving, non-judgmental input can help you to find clarity and a way forward.

 Overcoming thoughts of suicide is possible! Suicide is not the answer.

 I wish you blessings of light.

 Linney

 

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

A Poem by A. Richardson

The Interior

If I open
there is no loneliness here
and no longing

only each moment slipping
seamlessly into the next

a perfect choreography
of releasing and becoming

like shapes that bloom
and dissolve out of mist

or cells assembling
then rupturing.

Each leaf each warm-blooded thing
is a bone and a seed

both the fruiting
and death of all things

each flight of birds
already
a ghost-trail in the sky.

A. Richardson

Autumn Richardson is a good friend of mine. She and her husband reside in England where they live the bohemian lifestyle in a cottage in the countryside facing mountains.