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BEFORE WE DIG IN:

Happy Memorial Day weekend to all US readers.

To all who have watched Stanley Cup hockey because of my recommendation, as you know, you owe me, The final game between Ottawa and Pittsburgh was almost unbearable to watch-in its intensity, in its almost unsurpassable excellence.

"The Dig" has gone out to the world every week for over ten and a half years. This year we revisit what I consider some of the best pieces, because if I can barely remember writing them, I imagine you will benefit from reading or re-reading them. They are called "Treasures from the Past."

Having trouble reading this Dig? Read the fully formatted Dig on my website, www.FindWisdomNow.com. It will look much better, have proper spacing, and be easier to read.


WHEN YOU ARE FEELING DOWN

If you are lonely, if you have lately been deeply hurt by someone, or are feeling crushed by your own failures, the last thing you will feel is the ability to focus on your dream, your goal or anything worth your while. As you writhe in isolation, rejection and despair, you feel weak.

I remember when I was a student at the University of Edinburgh I felt this way most of the time. I was lonely and far from home. I felt inferior compared to the brightness of my professors, among them my philosophy tutor who read and spoke in four languages. The highlight of my day was often eating a Twix chocolate bar and sleeping at night. Fortunately, very few people hurt my feelings but that is because I spent most of my time with books. I was a mess.

I think back to how I felt then and wonder how I ever became a psychotherapist? how I ever became anything?

What do we focus on when there seems to be no bottom, nothing to stand on, no place to get our footing? What can help us get a grip when it feels like we will never get a grip again? Is there anything else besides chocolate and sleep?

There is....but I tell you this as one who is reminded every week, by my work, by sometimes how I can still feel, the immense and shattering power of our moods and feelings and lost inner states.

1. When you are lost and hurt and weak, do not necessarily believe everything you think and feel. I'm sure there is some truth in what you are feeling, but our feelings can be very distorted, exaggerated, and downright cruel-either to ourselves or others. Be careful to not make any major decisions while you are in a bad mood. When in trouble, don't get in more trouble. Wait till you feel more normal and you will make wiser decisions.

2. When you feel more normal, ask yourself what was accurate in all that you thought and felt while the skies were gray and everything looked bleak.

3. When the skies are grey, do something kind for someone else and the world will look like a better place. Do your work, whatever that may be, and your work will help you readjust internally. Freud had it right: to work and to love.

4. I know that there is someone who has seen your worth and loves you just the way you are, mess and all. Sure, they want you to have less mess in your life, but the basic truth is that they see your worth and talent and evident beauty. Trust their view, dwell on their love. Doubt the voice in you that rubs your mess in your face and makes you think you are nothing but a mess.

"The brokenness of a person does not erase the sacredness of a person." (The Rev. Emil Dumas)

5. We are delicate souls and even those who love you will unwittingly hurt you, as you will hurt them. In this respect, forgiveness is vital and necessary and life-giving. However, forgiveness is rooted in justice and moral growth and it is not an excuse for life-long stubborn cluelessness or malicious intent. Our bad mood may be a clue that someone hurts us too much, too often. And, of course, we could be doing this to others, or be doing it to ourselves. We have met the enemy...

6. If there is anything that explains whatever triumph I have achieved over grey skies, it would be the fact that people have loved and respected me and that I learned to endure through grey skies to be present for a better day. When I lived in Scotland, I drove 80 miles almost every weekend to my father's home town and would be greeted by Uncle Bill and Aunt Cathy, Billy and Carole and Roderick, Uncle Innes and Aunt Doreen, and my Granny Beverley--and their smile and "skinnies" and soup made me think that it was quite possible that I was loved even though I did not know four languages!

River starts with a drop of rain
Somewhere in this world
Light years shape this arc of sky
And sand a precious pearl
And you will light a stranger's life
By letting yours unfurl
And on and on it goes
Sparks upon the wind
Like a July 4th, a crown of stars
And a good time grin
On and on it flies, on a new bird's wing
In a beating heart, the moon that rose
And the gift of spring

You can say that you'll never matter
Lose or win
The world won't care and it's hard to bear
Such a lonely wind
But you can change a stranger's life
By letting yours begin
And on and on it goes
Chance is everywhere
Like the train you took
The rain that fell on the summer air.

(Mary Chapin Carpenter, "On and On It Goes")


Next week we find a treasure from the past.

Chat then;

Bob Beverley

P.S. Sharing wisdom is absolutely necessary in this oft foolish world. I'd be honored if you pass THE DIG along to your friends.


Copyright 2017 FindWisdomNow.com.

Bob Beverley is a psychotherapist in the mid-Hudson Valley of New York State, USA. He has written Peace Etc. A Journey Through Open Heart Surgery and Other Scary Things, Written to Lessen Your Anxiety, Whatever It May Be; Emotional Elegance (with an Introduction by David Allen; Dear Tiger: A Book for Tiger Woods and For Us All; How to Be a Christian and Still Be Sane and The Secret Behind the Secret Law of Attraction (with Kevin Hogan, Dave Lakhani and Blair Warren). All books are available on Amazon, except "Emotional Elegance" which is available at www.emotionalelegance.com

Bob is available for motivational speaking, consultation, and psychotherapy. Bob is the leader of a unique, life-changing experience called THE SHARP CLUB.

His website is FindWisdomNow.com where you can discover advice that has, as Bob says, "been road-tested in the emotional emergency ward I have always worked in. What I have to say is not a stage show. My audience comes back next week." Bob can be reached at Bob@FindWisdomNow.com