MC's Whispers

Whispering Silences

Archive for the tag “emotions”

Letter to Santa

http://www.shieldhealthcare.com/community/grow/2017/12/21/dear-santa-letter-from-a-special-needs-parent/

As a Christmas birthday child, this season is magical for so many reasons. Mainly because it’s filled with hope, anticipation, laughter, cheer, love, and so much joy. It’s the period when it’s OK to act like a child and feel like one too. Perhaps more so than children themselves. We feel everything so intensely and the emotions that fill the air during this most wonderful time of the year are no exception.

You never get too old to rejoice in the magic of this season. The fact that it brings people together. It fills your heart with excitement, optimism, happiness, and so much love. Particularly if you get to spend it with people who mean the most to you. Because in essence, that’s what we spend all year waiting for. To celebrate the best part of it (and for some, a birthday too) with those we cherish.

We’re comfortable with being vulnerable and letting it show. Of how happy we are when we enter an elf factory, or stand under a huge lighted-up Christmas tree for a selfie, or get lost in all the seasonal decorations of a store. We don’t mind to demonstrate that side of us, because it’s a part of who we are, and it’s contagious too. Admit it, you can’t not smile at a (small-sized) Christmas-obsessed person camouflaged as an elf among large decorations and rejoicing so much that everything else seems trivial.

Christmas makes us all kids at heart. So, it doesn’t matter how many we’ve experienced, we seize the opportunity to write a letter to Santa. It’s just that we don’t ask for toys anymore. We ask for moments, people, and emotions. We ask that nothing be taken away from us. We express the urge for love, serenity, and happiness. For things to work out as we deserve. For our heart’s desires to be fulfilled.

When we start writing “Dear Santa”, it all magically becomes clear; what it is that we truly want, what matters most, and what’s important for us.

Writing a letter to Santa brings back that innocence we lose as we grow up, that belief that we have that the world will be as magical as we dream it. It reminds us that what we dream we can create, and what we imagine we can be, as long we have an open heart and mind…and just believe.

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Genuine Smiles

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There was a difference between when she smiled wholeheartedly and when she simply forced it. Her aunt knew how to read her. She was just like her. The fake smile caused more muscles to tense. It was strained and didn’t seem natural.

We all have moments like that. When we feel obligated to smile and be courteous when in fact we feel nothing like it at all.

Charlotte saw so much of herself in her niece. Joy lived up to her name most times. But when her aura clouded, it could be sensed a mile away.

“The secret to maintaining that smile is to keep the child inside you alive”, Charlotte said.

Joy tilted her face like a cat in awe.

Think about it: when we’re simply living in that moment, blurring everything around us to the point that nothing else exists beyond what we’re doing and who we’re with at the present time, aren’t we happier? We shift all our focus to that precise period of time that we don’t care about past or future or anything else that causes us concern and stress. We feel relaxed, playful, carefree, and genuinely happy. Your heart is open to love and…well, joy, and your mind is thinking positively by default. You view the world brighter because you’ve turned the mood switch to that direction”.

Joy smiled, her head turned back straight. The smile was authentic this time.

She didn’t need to say much. Charlotte understood anyway. She gave her a hug. One of those long ones where you wait for the other person to let go first and so you stay entangled for what seems like hours, laughing while you feel each other’s heart vibrate. The embrace was so tight, Charlotte could actually feel the crack that had marked Joy’s emotions.

We’re all loving people the way we wish we were loved and hurting them the way we wish we were not hurt”.

How different the world would be if we could – even for an instance – see things from another’s point of view, step in their shoes and view their perspective. How much better everything would be, if we could just let our pride aside for a minute and show some empathy to the people around us, particularly to those we say we care for the most”.

Sometimes, love has a way of coming back to you”, Charlotte added, loosening the squeeze.

If it’s meant to be, it won’t miss you. There is always a way if we truly want it”.

Peace from mind

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There is a concept called ‘emotional leakage’; it’s about letting your emotions overflow into your external behaviour. In simpler terms, you show exactly what you’re feeling.

Like this article notes: “For overcontrolled (OC) people who tend have a lot of impulse control, showing a flood of emotion externally and in a situation where others can see it, might be very uncomfortable or shame-provoking. Emotional leakage happens when an OC persons self-control has failed and their inner feelings are revealed and expressed more intensely than preferred. Emotional leakage isn’t a problem per se, except when it’s followed by self-criticism.”

This leakage, however, is often expressed in negative terms – in psychosomatic symptoms which our body uses to raise the alarm, to signify to us that something is wrong, that the entire system is not working properly and we need to change something.

If you think about it, when we’re happy, when we’re satisfied with work, we have a steady income, a stable life rhythm, everything seems to be going perfectly and the whole world appears wonderful in our eyes. But when an adversity strikes, when unexpectedly you’re forced to search for another way of surviving the increasing expenses and nothing seems certain, you view the world much differently and not so idyllic.

We’ve all been on both sides of this spectrum. But we tend to forget it or overlook it.

Happiness itself is fleeting,” says Rob Dial in this fantastic podcast titled “You don’t want to be happy”.

He explains that happiness is an emotion. And just like any emotion, it will be passing and gone eventually. Emotions change. So, what we want more than happiness is peace. Because peace is a state we enter in, and it’s harder to get in and out of a state rather than in and out of an emotion.

In the moments of our greatest happiness, we’re in our moments of greatest peace. Because we’re right there in that moment, thinking of nothing else. In our highest moments in life, we are so present in them that nothing outside them exists. You’re not thinking of your to-do list or of past mistakes or future challenges. Your mind simply goes quiet. And that constant story inside your head doesn’t seem to be screaming at you. That dumb story you’re telling yourself about who you are and why you’re that way is quiet in your highest moments. You reach a state of euphoria.

We want that peace from mind. From our thoughts. From our own self.

The mind is an extraordinary organ. It tries to protect us by fast forwarding about what’s going to happen and projecting into the future – it’s how we survive. It considers potential threats in order to keep us safe. But if you manage to focus in the present moment, your mind goes quiet.

The mind is an amazing yet complex tool. But we’re not taught how to use or control it. And instead, this tool becomes the master when it’s supposed to be our servant.

We have millions of ways to distract ourselves constantly – screens of all sorts, abundant information everywhere – it all stimulates our mind and keeps us wanting more. We become addicted to the temporary high.

However, there are various techniques to help you reach that much-needed state of peace. Meditation, for example, is tyring to get you to a state where you’re free from your mind. Allow yourself to calm down. It takes time, but it’s worth it once you get there.

Mindfulness is to place yourself in situations you find peace of mind as often as possible. Focus on that very moment and disregard everything else. It will help reduce stress, lengthen attention span, maximise awareness, decrease anxiety, etc. Our mind is like a computer – in some, like myself, there are at least two browsers running with a dozen tabs open in each. At some point, it will start being held back and running slower.  We need a restart every now and again to reboot and refuel.

Fear, stress, anxiety, and worry are all programmes of the mind. We need to cultivate silence as much as possible. To silence our thoughts, place things in order, and see things a bit more clearly.

If we take things one steady step at a time, perhaps they will work out more effectively and without harming our health in the meantime.

Life-changing flares

It takes courage to get up in the morning and convince yourself that today will be the day when something so wonderfully extraordinary happens that life will never be the same.

It takes guts to be so cheerful before you’ve barely opened your eyes.

Leo was one of those guys.

He was that person who sang as he shaved before going to work. Who made breakfast for the family on weekends. Who hardly complained about anything, because ‘what good would that do?’ He was the one who could literally turn your frown upside down because when you saw him, you wished there were more of him in the world.

Linda was a girl with mood swings. Like any female, she was easily affected by hormonal changes, to the extent that days of laughter would be preceded by spurs of inexplicable irritation or followed by moments of melancholic sobbing. There was no real explanation for any of it. She was, however, a person who would wear her heart on her sleeve; she would do anything she could and more to take care of the people she loved. She would organise surprises and be happier for the emotion felt rather than the gift itself. She was a person who would go all out, and despite what she said, she secretly hoped someone would do something similar for her too.

When they met, the flare lit up inside both instantly.

Leo asked her if she believed in fate. “What if everything we lived was precisely to lead us to this very moment, so that we could meet right here, right now?

What if we’re one connection away from changing our entire lives?” was her response.

She smiled and his entire world lit up. His heart fluttered and she blushed, her eyes glistening with happiness.

It wasn’t always easy. But they tried. Together. It required finding the middle line. Making compromises and retreating when fighting would not lead anywhere.

I need you to be happy, because we can’t be sad together,” he told her when she felt blue.

If you laugh, I’ll smile,” she would reply.

And step-by-step they would make each other better.

In life we don’t need extravagance; just one person to turn on the light. Everything else will follow.

Coloured time

©GE

And just like that, summer has passed and we’re already in the middle of autumn.

Without even realising how the days have gone by so quickly.

Often when we’re too busy with life itself, we don’t have time to even consider how it flies by.

Perhaps it’s better that way too.

Because we enjoy it more.

We fill our days with adventure, so much that it finds us even when we’re not looking for it.

The key is this: to keep yourself entertained so you are barely able to sulk about anything negative.

Keep your eyes, mind, and heart open. Good things are coming if you send out the right vibes.

Life’s Lighthouses

You know it’s true that you have to look where you’re going, because you will inevitably go where you’re looking.

You might as well shine a light on the path that’ll get you there.

When we’re settled in a situation and time flies without us realising it, we sort of feel that we’ve found our way. But the truth is, it’s in our human nature to want more. To desire better. To aim higher. At least, that’s how we evolve. Otherwise we’re just swamping, living a life without colour, satisfaction, or fulfilment.

There comes a time, however, when we feel lost. When our life lens becomes blurred and gloomy and all we see is disappointment and disdain.

It’s when we’re sulking the most that we need people to stir us up. To tell us truths we often don’t want to hear but serve to awaken us. To show us we deserve better and that we are worthy of it.

Those who love you are those who are most irritated when they see you wasting away, because they know your value and your ability to do more, be more, achieve better.

As Wayne Dyer said, “if you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change”.

We all need someone to act as a lighthouse, to shine the way when we’re feeling lost in the darkness. To make us believe that we’re destined for greatness, and to boost us into envisioning its realisation.

Open road

©Matteo Paganelli

There is a risk with being too comfortable with where you are. You become too complacent and too lazy to budge. Like still water in a swamp, you become stagnant as the world around you evolves.

The problem is, we too often take things for granted. A situation to which we’re accustomed does not necessarily mean that it will forever remain so. Circumstances change, often in the blink of an eye, yet no matter what we tell ourselves, we’re never wholly prepared for any of it.

Confusion is followed by an anguish of how to proceed. We need a plan. That’s what we pressure ourselves to have. But life doesn’t always work in a scheduled manner. Sometimes we just need to take things as they come.

Consider this, however: Without a destination, you’re never late. Because you have nowhere precise to go. You’re always exactly where you’re supposed to be.

Or like the cat in Alice in Wonderland said: If you don’t know where you’re going any road will get you there.

Perhaps we need to see the positive in every situation. A step-back always rattles you to change.

We simply need the courage to move ahead with more experience and determination than before.

Don’t be afraid to start over; you might like your new story.

Offline

There is a reason why many meditation and life-seizing coaches recommend you go offline for as much as you possibly can.

Scrolling on a screen all day steals your energy and mental clarity.

But most of all, it takes you away from life itself.

Because be it as it may, life is what is that blur that is happening around your screen. Just lift your head up long enough to devour it.

We go outdoors to breathe in fresh air; to socialise with real people; to view greener fields, bluer waters, and clearer skies; to marvel at the beauty of the world we live in.

Yet we do nothing of that.

Because even out there, we’re stuck on a screen. We’re so invested in what everyone else is doing and showing off online that we hardly exploit our ‘free’ time. As if a photo for a social post is enough to have said that we’ve done something different. Sure, photos are the concrete remnants of our memories. But there’s so much more to that. It’s all the moments we spend talking, laughing, doing things, hugging, and simply being around our loved ones that make the difference. It’s the feelings we create in those moments that cannot be captured or properly portrayed in a photograph.

So next time you’re out and about, around your favourite people (or not), put down your phone and observe the world around you.

You might just be amazed by it.

Hearts apart

A good friend once advised me that in any relationship you should not give too much all at once and up front. It will prompt greed, because people always want more but are too selfish to admit it is so.

Unfortunately, some people can’t help being kind, and giving others their all, unconditionally, without asking for anything in return. Nothing other than acknowledgment and respect.

Some things that are obvious for some are not at all for others. But when you have to ask for even those common-sense issues, their value is automatically lost.

We grow irritated and angry when we feel we are not taken into account, when we are not prioritised as highly as we wish, when we witness that our voices are not heard.

Anger leads to rage, and as our hearts grow further apart we yell to cover the distance.

Have you noticed that? We shout when we’re angry even if we’re standing two feet apart, because we sense the other is not hearing us, not grasping what we’re saying, because we keep repeating the same things without any change, without progress. We speak simply for reiterating each one’s position. Not to discuss and resolve whatever issues arise for whatever reason.

We may presume someone else’s worries are petty. But that does not mean we should treat them as such. Respect is seeing the world through another’s eyes. Wondering how you would act in their shoes. And helping them settle the crisis.

Caring is demonstrating that you value the other regardless of what your prior actions may have proven to them. It is a simple as that: show it.

If love is the only way to soothe the yelling and reconnect our hearts, all we have to do is display it. Otherwise, there is no point in even trying.

Perhaps that was the problem in the first place; that we tried too hard; expected too much; and got disenchanted too soon.

A rollercoaster that ends in tears

Our hectic daily lives cause a lot of stress. Or perhaps we allow our circumstances to stress us out. Almost constantly. And over anything/everything.

Stress is not an easy emotion to control.

Neither is anger, which most often comes as a consequence of the aforementioned anguish.

When we feel angry, frustrated, irritated, unjustly treated, hurt, or simply exhausted with everything and everyone, our body produces a flood of hormones that stimulate strong reactions – from a racing heart to sweaty palms, dry mouth, and short-term memory loss. Tempers flare, voice decibels increase, and soon it all elevates out of control.

And then, when it becomes too much, we often feel the need to cry.

Tears from anger are a powerful emotional response to high stress levels – a mixture of feeling mad and sad simultaneously.

“Tearful crying is a uniquely human activity, and scientists believe it may serve an evolutionary function: a distress signal used to summon help and provoke helping behaviours in others. Crying releases oxytocin and prolactin, two chemicals that can bring your heart rate down and otherwise calm you after a stressful event”.

That explains why after a heated discourse, and a meltdown of tears, you feel the urge for silence, isolation, and mostly, comfort.

It’s a rollercoaster of emotions that ends in tears. Ones that are therapeutic enough to restore the balance we need to feel sane, mentally healthy, and strong enough to go on with life itself.

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