Healing Wounds Do you see that knife in my back? Let it stay there to stem the flow of a river of blood crimson red dead red the blow dealt at the hands of a friend. Is seek I seek a healing give me the bissy kola nut to stem the tie of this feeling of dying. In the curls and twirls of these words I find a home to perch and wait out the storms while I recover... Out of breath now I grasp a leaf of life to stop slipping in my own gore. The escape I see is crowded now other souls that seek relief. In a ball I wait my turn, In and out out and in to keep out the dim tide.
Our health is important. We see this message all the time in different ways. We try to eat right -sometimes – we may try to exercise – once in a while – but it may not be enough. Our health is about our mental, physical and spiritual wellbeing, but sometimes one or all of these suffer in our quest to succeed – whatever that looks like.
For many persons the pursuit of happiness is closely tied with the pursuit of wealth. “To be happy is to be financially secure”, this is how many of us feel and is what motivates us to keep striving and keep hustling. However, for many of us the proverbs also rings true, health is not valued till sickness comes. For some reason, I cannot clearly say, I have been more aware during the period of this pandemic how fragile we as humans truly are. It seems that not a week goes by when someone I know or know of has not died. That someone I love is not ill and I start to wonder why is death so present, staring us down. But death has always been there, it’s just that in the course of our lives many of us have been good at ignoring it until we reach that point where we have to face it in different ways, until it is our time.
We are distracted by the need to work hard to earn the things we are told we need to be successful, that some willingly trade their health to pursue a dream that has been foisted on them from birth. Scrolling through different social medias I see threads of conversations about investing in crypto currency and the importance of investments overall, and while all of that is something to consider I don’t really see the promotion of good health. It seems that health is something that many people ignore until later in order to make or get the “bag” now. Think about what the ancient Greek physician Herophilos pointed our, When health is absent, wisdom cannot reveal itself, art cannot manifest, strength cannot fight, wealth becomes useless and joy cannot be felt. Our health, is paramount to truly being successful,. There have been many times when I have been too sick to think straight and get simple tasks done and those moments remind me of how fragile I am, how little power I have, if my health is poor. I have learned the hard way that my health should be my number one priority, not being the next billionaire or living in financial comfort, gaining that promotion or the adulation of others. You see, it doesn’t matter how much wealth you have if you do not have the health needed to appreciate that wealth . You’re still gonna die leaving it behind.
Now, as morbid as that may sound to some people, the truth remains that, the truth, unchangeable and inescapable. I said that our health should be our number one priority but of course because we are living in this world and we need money to live in it, pursuing financial security must also be a priority. However, we should never sacrifice our health to get a buck, then what is the point. Some of us think that we are being responsible by staying in relationships that will ultimately be beneficial to us in the long run, but they are slowly helping to undermine our health. We think we are being mature by staying in situations that are terrible, because it shows how responsible we are, but we suffer in all ways because of that choice. We not only have a duty to take care of our body, but also our mind and spirit. So when we find ourselves in situations that threaten any or all, we must work at removing them from our lives or removing ourselves from them. The gains you are advised about getting is not worth compromising any of those key things to your health. Also, we must recognize and acknowledge the traumas that still affect our lives and address them. We do not do so by undermining the potential of others by expecting them to fix them or fix us, but by being honest and getting the help that will be fair to those close to us and to our own needs. It is important that we remember: before healing others, heal yourself
I do not have the answers nor the life experiences to give the best advice that persons may need. I too struggle with my health and with the need to be financially secure. I struggle with finding a balance between giving enough and not too much of myself. However, we must put our health and wellbeing first, sometimes even above those we love and are closest to. We must take the time to see what is or is likely to undermine our health and work at improving them: when the heart is at ease the body is healthy. This I fear is not a year long endeavor, but a lifetime of trial and error. We have to create a balance where our financial situation does not lead to ill health and not allowing our pursuit of financial gain to overshadow our commitment to good health. Further, we cannot allow relationships or situations to be the catalyst of chronic ill-health either.
There are no smooth roads or easy journeys to finding a balance in life that will lead to good health. However, the choices that we make now, will determine our quality of health down the road. Whether making the right choices or the wrong ones, in the end we will reap the consequences.
Based on many stories available to us via mass media, it seems easy to flip the script and change the story of who we are. However, to do this we may need to cut ties that we have depended on all our lives and habits that are easy to spot but hard to break.
What is it about hearing the stories of others that seem to motivate us so much? We usually love to hear the success stories of others, especially when those persons had to overcome some serious challenges. We hear are inspired and feel invincible by those stories. But, it is their story, their triumph and their success. While we celebrate with them, as we should, we cannot remain on their cloud nine to live our lives.
We can never be like anyone else no matter how much we wish we could. There are too many among us who feel that we can be like this person or that person, and so we try to copy what they have done to the T and paste it onto ourselves. We may deny doing that but, when we act the way they act or do the things they do or eat what they eat do the same exercise, use the same hair product and so on, we are not trying to find a formula that works for us, but using one meant for the person we are trying to be like.
Maybe we need to put a little more effort into leaning into who we are. Imagine all our lives we have been influenced by others. Can we say how much of that influence has shaped us into who we are? I realized that I was good at imitating people and becoming who they expect me to be. At first, when I realized that I was doing this, I did feel like a fraud. I had gotten so good at it that it came naturally. However, when I realized this was a thing I did, I decided to make the effort to change. I started to ask myself all kinds of questions. What did I like and not like? What type of friend did I want and wanted to be? What kind of music did I like? There were many more questions, but the point was that I made the effort to discover things about myself that had nothing to do with trying to impress others. As I made the effort to learn more about myself, I had very little room to worry about who I most wanted to be like, instead I was more concerned about being honest with myself so that I could show up as myself each day to those I interacted with.
But, it is hard to lean into yourself when people only want to see the you they can digest or tolerate. They don’t want to see that you have flaws, because the version of you they have in mind aligns with their snapshot of you. They may not want the movie reels that might reveal your being human instead of an image created or forged for the consumption of others.
There has to be a way out. Often times when we feel trapped, this is the first thought we have. We can also have this thought when we are no longer satisfied with living up to the expectations of others. We then wonder, what can we do? I have found that the best way out is not to seek the answers from anyone outside of yourself. The best way out is simply to trust and into the Almighty and lean more into who you are.
To be alive──is Power!― Emily Dickinson
It’s not Paradise, It’s Life…
I recently went to Royalton Blue Waters, for three days and two night on an annual staff trip. I thought I would be writing about my time there: about the Calypso restaurant and the wonderful staff or the Zen a Japanese restaurant, where our meals were prepared before us, while we are entertained in song, sung by the chefs and encouraged to catch a choice piece of mouthwatering bite as it goes flying across the table.
I could have written about any number of things, about Polly the Rastafari craft vendor I met on the first day at the beach, who sold us bags and spoke about Inity and love; maybe next time I will. But on the second night, the group I was with and I met Michael Daley; and it is based on our conversation with him that I am writing this post.
We met and sat beside Mr. Daley and his family of seven at the Zen restaurant. We all sat to to have what had been sold to us as a once in a life time experience. So with great anticipation we sat to enjoy our meals. From time to time we exchanged smiles and laughter as we truly had a very unique dining experience. When the meal was over, most of those present had already left when we decided that maybe it was time to go, so that we could get out of the way of those who had a nine o’clock reservation.
It was as we were about to leave that Mr. Daley decided to engage us in a conversation that lasted almost an hour.
Gemstones From Mike
Mike, it turns out is a very resourceful and success driven man of God. His current venture, he informed us was the purchase of a piece of land in the same areas as the Natural water wonder, the Luminous Lagoon in Falmouth. However, in his sharing of this milestone, there was no conceit no attitude o, ” look at me I have done all of this”. He indicated that his purchase was based on a seven day period of fasting and praying to God for guidance. By the way he was also praying because he had no idea where the money was coming from to purchase the property!
Apart from his very inspiring story of coming from Spanish Town – FYI, I am also a Spanishtonian (those born and raised in Spanish Town). He indicated the need to make God the head and not the tail of everything he did. He encouraged us to put God first in everything, seek His counsel and not anyone. Though advice from close friends and family maybe invaluable, they can also lead us away pursuing the things we ought to pursue or do. He also reminded us of something we know but sometimes forget,that is, to not settle for what we have if there is more we can achieve. We know when we have settled and we know why. Sometimes when we need it the most along comes a message to remind us that we are not where we need to be. We may have more growth to make and more things to do. For us also, we may find ourselves doing the same things and expecting a different result. Mike reminded us of the need to try new things and get out of our routine. There he was about to become a hotelier, something he has never been but a path he has committed to, as he embarks on this new journey.
Then, there was the last but certainly not least piece of gem , no matter what you do and what you achieve God always needs to get the glory. Sometimes we are so happy, so excited, so consumed by our own sense of importance that we forget about God’s part in what we achieved. However, we need to remember that our stories of success and what we have been able to do are all lies if God is not a part of the telling.
If you have done or said something that you later regret well then we have all been there and done that.
Usually, when this happens the most powerful three letter words are, if I knew. Of course by then it is also too late.
We all experience regret but guess what, it is a negative emotion that we should not dwell on. We can become so consumed by the regrets that we have, that we do not recognize our blessings and worse, do not recognize or accept the opportunities to expand our horizon. We are so traumatized by the one incident that gave birth to a paralyzing sense of regret that become the great stone we cannot remove.
Our sense of regret, at something or somethings that happened in the past, may cause us to want to repent for the rest of our lives. Now that is a sorry state of affairs.
Sometimes when things happen we have to accept the role we played and if needed, make changes that show our growth.
We need to be at that point of no return when we no longer apologize for what we did in the past, because that is no longer who we are. The thing is, we cannot freeze the past and fix it and the present cannot influence the past. All we can do is continue to life the live we have been given, the best we know how at the stage we are at.
The point of no return can seem ominous based on the situation you are faced with. However, it can be the opportunity you need, that we need, to break free from the regrets of the pas,t to find, that being at this point can only make us stronger; it’s at this point that we either sink or swim.
Blame means responsibility for something bad or something that has gone wrong. The thing or person blamed always comes out looking bad and voila, you become the victim – poor you.
It’s easy to point the finger at someone or something else. Not only does it get us off the hook but it makes it easier for us to walk away from the mess we actually make.
Let’s Cast The Net wide…
So, today a lot of us make the most of the blame game and can find a thousand reasons why things are not the way they should be. You’re not where you want to be, then you had a rough childhood, nobody loved you, no one helped you or you did not get enough time to do whatever you wanted to do.
Then there is the more ridiculous: you have a headache you blame the weather. You’re in a bad mood, someone put you in a bad mood, or you eat too much and naturally you may put on some unwanted weight, what do you do? You blame the food for tasting too good! Also, you are late, you blame the traffic, even though you got up late and did not leave out in time.
There are many ways in which we try to blame others for why things may be going wrong in our past or present situations.
The fact is when you do this, you do not address the real elephant in the room. You.
I’m sure sometimes we do not realize we are doing it, because it has become so common place. Let’s say you make a mistake. Instead of acknowledging that you did and try to correct it, you may spend a couple of minutes trying to explain why you made the mistake. Also, that why could have a longer time than a couple of minutes, and actually waste everybody’s time!
But consider if you keep doing this, you cannot escape you and whatever problems you face now from doing this will only get worse.
Instead of casting the blame for you mess, stick around and clean it up.
Your beliefs become your thoughts,― Gandhi
Your thoughts become your words,
Your words become your actions,
Your actions become your habits,
Your habits become your values,
Your values become your destiny
I was recently watching a YouTube video in which Marisa Peer spoke on healing the body and mind, and it fit so nicely with this thought that came to me. Our thoughts are where it all begins; it is where we build or destroy ourselves.
When I was younger I would watch the program, Profile on every Sunday on the television. Each week I would feel intimidated by these seemingly outer worldly beings who overcame great adversities to be at the top of whatever profession they had pursued and I thought, “well, I’ll never be one of those persons” and so I would mentally roll my eyes, each Sunday while listening after a while – but still watch it – thinking that this show just makes ordinary people know that they are ordinary.
We are what we think and before we say whatever we say we think it. So if you think you will never do something, you never will.
From the video with Marisa Peer it all seemed so simply the idea of telling your mind what you want to do. However, if you have practiced negative thoughts all your life, it’s not going to be easy, but, it’s also not impossible. I developed a formula that did not worked for me over the years: in order not to be disappointed, never think positively. And guess what, I never was? This is not because I was always happily surprised by thinks working out, but 8 out of 10 times they did not and I would go, “oh there it is, I was right, life just keeps proving me right, life is so unfair, when will things go my way…” and on and on I would go, until I was paralyzingly depressed. It is obvious then that our thoughts have a lot of power and we can become so use to having certain thoughts, that we do not realize the damage we are doing to ourselves.
In reading up on this, one of the things I constantly see is the idea that we create our reality. Whatever we think really does come true. Because of this we go around feeling like we have second sight, when really we have made those things a reality. We make them real not just by thought but actions that go along along with those thoughts. So, you think you are lacking in some way, and you begin to act as if you are and people label you base on how you act and begin to treat you that way, and you see this as evidence that you really are this way. But it all comes back to you and not those persons, they are just following your lead. You are telling them how you want to be seen and treated – it really has nothing to do with them and everything to do with you!
For several years I have suffered with some pretty scary panic attacks, which took me to the hospital twice, once I stayed overnight. At one point I drank almost half a bottle of vodka and took a couple of antidepressant tablets because I wanted to die. Luckily it did not work – and none of the persons I live and who live me knows about that so I hope they don’t read this. But, at the time my thought was, ” I can’t even do that right, might as well carry on” and I did. I am still here and I haven’t had a serious panic attack in two years. It’s not because I am “cured”, it’s because I keep telling myself that I want to live and I have so much to look forward to; and, I do!
Where a thought goes energy goes and healing goes…Marisa Peer
God gave us the ability to use our minds to accomplish great things, why wouldn’t we fill it with positive thoughts? Our thoughts are more powerful and so we need to be conscious of how we are using them. If you want something to change in your life you first need to assess your thoughts to determine how well they are aligned with your purpose and what you want to make a reality. Your thoughts can mean the difference between life and death.
Your personal thoughts carry so much power. It’s important to be mindful of what you spend your time thinking about. Make sure that your thoughts aren’t defeating you or your purpose in life. Fear, doubt, and a negative attitude will continually hold you back. Your journey may be a bumpy one, but I encourage you to never give up! Giving up only does one thing: It keeps you from ever knowing what could have been. Don’t allow your uncertain attitude to be the reason why you don’t succeed. It’s a very sad thing to live your life with regrets. So therefore, giving up is NOT an option for you. Don’t even entertain those thoughts. KEEP MOVING FORWARD, no matter what!