Saturday, January 13, 2007


This time of year is difficult for many people. It’s a combination of things, I think. There’s an inevitable letdown because the holidays are over. There’s less sunlight. It’s cold and one often stays inside because of the weather. There’s way too much time to think and habit for most of us is to think of what’s wrong with ourselves or our lives. This is a time of year when trying to be Susie Sunshine may not work—no matter what.

I’m not advocating getting lost in pain or self-doubt or sadness. Instead, I’m going to suggest sitting with the emotions. Being honest with ourselves about how we really feel about things, and then FOCUSING ON SOLUTIONS.

That last part is key—focusing on solutions. What actions could we take to cause things to change and get better? Note: We do not have to take any actions. All I’m suggesting is letting ourselves think of actions we COULD take. What are the pros and cons of each possibility? What are the resources we would need to succeed? How might our lives be different if we did make one or more of these changes?

It’s very powerful to take all pressure off ourselves by saying we don’t have to do anything or take any action. It makes it possible to brainstorm.

Mind you, I do believe that if we brainstorm ideas and realize the ways some of these ideas could make our lives much better, we are more likely to take action—because we want to, because the steps feel right, because we are ready. At the same time, it’s important to know that we don’t have to unless and until we ARE ready.

So...what changes might you make? What difference would it make in your life if you did? Do any of those possibilities brighten your day and make you smile? If so, can you take even the smallest step to begin to accomplish it?

Huge transformations all begin with little, tiny steps. Transformations begin with a realization of the possibilities and a faith that even if we can’t make the entire change, we can take that first baby step.

Wishing all of you joyful baby steps this week and in the months to come and sending safe and gentle (((((((hugs))))))),



Anonymous said...

Winter is an especially hard time for me because its when I was raped. It is all about focusing on solutions and then taking the steps to make them work. I often get lost with this because what I WANT to do and what I SHOULD do are often different things. Plus, the solution is unknown, but the unhealthy patterns are very easy to follow. Here's to hoping that I can find the balance to sit with my emotions and not get lost in the sadness, grief, and self-doubt.

Anonymous said...

we are in summer here and it certainly changes your perspective you feel more alive and willing to listen and do things funny how the seasons change our perspectives

April_optimist said...

Karma, (((Hugs))) Always begin with what will bring more joy into your life. The rest will follow. If you are happy then the need for self-destructive behavior falls away. If you believe in yourself it's far easier to make the changes you need to make.

Jumping in Puddles,

I've done a lot of traveling and been struck many times by how profoundly powerful the impact is of weather and geography. Maybe it's inbred in us that in winter we should hunker down and summer is the time to run outside and do things. Any time we can grab onto optimism in any shape or form we should! So glad you have sunshine now and can celebrate life a little more.

Anonymous said...

So true April. Thanks.