For Those Struggling to Find Inner Peace, a Note of Encouragement

You lovely person reading this, you need a break. You have now seen two very long months of this year, and what really simple, good thing have you done for yourself? Have you danced? Sat in silence and meditated? Have you laughed with the people you love? Have you rejoiced and given thanks? For life itself, for who you are and everything that brought you to this point? For the joy in your life, and if there is very little in it at the moment, have you made a deal with yourself to find some? To get the help you need, because you deserve better and you deserve the best. You deserve to live and thrive. You deserve good things. You deserve love, you deserve joy. You deserve to find your purpose and pursue it with all your might. You deserve to be acknowledged for the good work you do, and for even the things you do for others, without much fanfare, without even words of appreciation or recognition, you deserve to know that it’s a good thing and the Universe, God or the higher being you pray to or hold in your soul, sees it and you are automatically rewarded.

You deserve to know the beauty that is in your soul, and to know that every time you take care of yourself, that beauty grows. You also deserve to be happy about your physical attributes, those things we didn’t order up but through genetics and sometimes a very lucky cosmic draw, we ended up with. Everyone has at least one thing that makes them stand out. Your eyes, your lips, your nose, your hips, your hands, your skin, your shape you are living in, your teeth, your ears, your boobs, your belly, your toes that make them jelly. I hope you are celebrating yourself, your very being. Your body, your mind, your heart, and your soul. You are precious.

I hope you know that I know, and most folk know, it’s not always easy, but you got this and you are being held even when you are all alone in the spaces and places no-one else can see and know about.

I hope you go for a walk that blows your mind with its simple joys, that you see beauty in the small things, and the everyday mundane things. I hope for you, you are able to sit and watch the sun set this evening. Or watch it rise the next morning and be very glad, and enjoy the stillness, stirring or slight sounds as the world gets up to greet the sun again. I hope the sunshine feels like sunshine, not another day spent wanting to hide under the covers, or not opening the door and going outside. I hope people don’t scare you, and that everyone doesn’t feel like a threat.

I hope you have an animal friend in your life that seems to understand what you say, and is the soul of empathy, cuteness and intelligence. Who comes to wake you up, check on you when you’ve overslept, or comes close to see what’s up when you’re crying. Or just wants you to hold and cuddle them, but really they are holding you with all the love that a soft furry little creature can muster. There is nothing like this kind of therapy. Giving love to a creature that can’t talk or reciprocate care is a step to getting better, and taking care of yourself. It also just adds sweetness to your life.

I hope you find the help that you need, and start working your way back to joy. Back to purpose, and energy, and boundless love and grace. Back to feeling again, not numbness and a constant, bottomless ocean of despair, of being in limbo. Of being stuck. I hope you feel gratitude once more. Keep a jar and fill it with small notes. On these, write a thing you feel grateful for each time you feel it. This helps. So does being left alone for a short time, but having that one person who will come get you out of it. Who will walk you into a shower if you need it, who will cook for you if you’re not eating. Who will get you on the exercise track if that’s what you need, so your endorphins can start to swim again, so your serotonin levels are at optimum. Who will find or recommend a therapist, and take you there. Who will let you cry, or sit and stare, or let you say “nothing matters, nothing’s there” over and over again if that helps. I hope you have this person in your life.

A person who will not tell you “you don’t have depression” “black people don’t get depressed” “just pray about it” or any number of useless things that are not medically, scientifically provable. Not to say that a combination of prayer and therapy cannot work, but that those who need medical help must not be dissuaded from it. I hope you get unstuck, and find your way out of the fog, out of the limbo you’ve existed in for so long. I hope your life finally moves forward.

I hope all good things for you, I hope you get better, and you get through the rough patches with love not only from others, but from yourself, most importantly. I hope you can say no to people and things that drain you or do not value or love you the way you are supposed to be loved. Who find ever new ways to mistreat you, or dismiss and devalue your life or concerns. This is key. Spend time with people who love you “irregardless”, and who will build you up. Chances are they also know others on the same path, and this will help you.

Take that walk, cuddle that cat (or dog or rabbit), feel the warmth on your skin again, drink a cool glass of water and savour it, enjoy the breeze, switch off gadgets that guzzle your happiness, or demand time from you that you really shouldn’t be giving, play some music you love, read your favourite book, and when ready, ride a bike, go for a drive, take the bus to somewhere new, be a tourist in your own city, plan to learn a new language, smile at a child’s laughter, collect shells or pretty pebbles on a beach, smile at a stranger, bake something, cook for someone, get yourself flowers, write in a journal, write bad poetry, write good poetry, watch your favourite show/s, go for a massage, do anything you like, anything you can look forward to, and do it with simplicity, love and joy. Take care of yourself, and rejoice in that self-care. Most importantly, give yourself permission. To love yourself and to put yourself first. To love your life once more, to laugh and to live your life to the brim. Go and be an eater of your youth, at any age, and be a liker of things. Once more.

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