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How writing can help the healing process

How writing can help the healing process

“I can shake off everything as I write; my sorrows disappear, my courage is reborn.” ~Anne Frank

Recently, a dear friend of ours lost their little baby just a few days after her birth. In spite of a healthy pregnancy, the baby had suffered severe brain damage. She was kept under treatment in possibly the best neo-natal intensive care unit in the country, yet ironically her recovery was beyond the finest team of doctors. The family had been distraught to learn that she will not survive.

During this traumatic period, the parents had resorted to penning down their thoughts, which they subsequently shared with us. It was heart wrenching to read their account of emotions as they helplessly saw their little daughter dying in their arms. A life event of this nature can be extremely painful to deal with and their agony only unfathomable. Yet, it was heartening to know of their strength to express the flood of sentiments raging through their hearts and their courage to eventually share their reflections.

Writing about any traumatic event we face is known to have helped the healing process and lower stress hormones. Be it in the form of logs or diaries or blogs, writing down our thoughts is therapeutic. Especially to help us deal with bereavement, traumatic events and setbacks, the daily practice of maintaining a journal or a diary has proven to be cathartic. This I can vouch for with my own experience of blogging here.

Keeping a personal journal

Writing a diary or journaling is akin to having an honest conversation with our true self. It can even take the form of ranting or venting or rambling anything that comes to mind. It is the flow of words in sync with the flow of our true emotions. Writing in confidentiality knowing that this will not be read by anyone can provide great relief. There is no one to judge or question our thoughts. No what’s and why’s asked. There is no one to impress or please. No grammar or writing skills or fancy language required. It could even include drawings, scribbles, doodles or pictures. It is simply for us to know what and why we are writing.

I write because I don’t know what I think until I read what I say. ~Flannery O’Connor

The beauty of journaling is that it tends to say it like it is without any flair or fluff. It is a beautiful and relaxing way to connect with our self. In a way, it is time spent in listening to our inner guidance that helps express our thoughts. And as we let them out, our perspective of looking at certain things goes through changes eventually.

An aid to healing

This uninhibited dialogue with the self often unravels feelings that were hard to face or even brushed under the carpet. It helps us recognise the reality that was difficult for us to face initially. It opens up the process of acknowledging the hard feelings in the first place, thereby opening up our hearts to healing. The process of wording our feelings, coping with them and internalising them brings in clarity of thought.

Writing changes the way we think. It serves as an all-important outlet to express our feelings. The darkness that accompanied our cluttered emotions slowly gives way to light. This release is essential to organise our emotions. We are then ready to learn from them, go past them and move on gradually in peace.

Journaling acts as our own therapy session with the self. By touching upon the various intra-personal dimensions, it indirectly aids in knowing ourselves better. It is, thus, a personally empowering way to self-heal. With this handy coping mechanism tool, we can be well equipped to confront challenges that lie ahead.

Keep a diary and someday it will keep you. ~Mae West

 

 

 

 

Q – Quotes, my favourite ones #AtoZChallenge

Q – Quotes, my favourite ones #AtoZChallenge

Words have a great impact on our self-esteem. Words can inspire, can encourage us and boost our self-confidence. Words have the ability to make a lasting impact on our thoughts and actions.

Through this post, I would like to share some of my favourite quotes from people who inspire me. Qoutes that are relevant in my life story, the ones that have created a ripple in my inner world. Here they come:

“When I let go of what I am, I become what I might be.” ~Lao Tzu

“Nothing can dim the light which shines from within.” ~Maya Angelou

“Our notions about happiness entrap us. We forget that they are just ideas. Our idea of happiness can prevent us from actually being happy. We fail to see the opportunity for joy that is right in front of us when we are caught in a belief that happiness should take a particular form.” ~Thich Nhat Hanh

“Set your life on fire. Seek those who fan your flames.” ~Rumi

“No one saves us but ourselves. No one can and no one may. We ourselves must walk the path.” ~Buddha

“It is not how much we do but how much love we put in the doing. It is not how much we give, but how much love we put in the giving.” ~Mother Teresa

“Passion is energy. Feel the power that comes from focusing on what excites you.” ~Oprah Winfrey

“Don’t wait for someone to bring you flowers. Plant your own garden and decorate your own soul.” ~Osho

 

Images courtesy: http://www.inspirational.quotesms.com/

This post is part of the #AtoZChallenge 2017 Blogging from A to Z: http://www.a-to-zchallenge.com/.

I write about my spiritual and personal growth influences from A to Z.
My previous posts in chronology:

A New Earth 

Brahma Kumaris

Chicken Soup for the Soul

Dialogue with Death 

Eat Pray Love 

Finding a purpose in life

GANDHI

Healing with Chakras

I Believe in Angels

Jonathan Livingston Seagull

Kahlil Gibran 

Lisa Nichols

Meditation

Neale Donald Walsch

Oprah & Deepak Meditations

Power of Positive Thinking

I – I believe in Angels #AtoZChallenge

I – I believe in Angels #AtoZChallenge

“When you feel lost, pause and look closely around you. Somewhere, somehow, an angel will be waiting to guide you home.” ~Author unknown

Angels are real. They surround us. We can call upon them when we need them.

Under normal circumstances, I wouldn’t have believed any of the above. But when I was truly seeking a Guardian Angel in my life, to hold me in my moments of despair and show me the way forward, I had found one. The connection was real and it remains. Had it not been for certain ethereal experiences I have had, I would have continued to think that angels existed only in stories.

The word ‘Angel’ is derived from the ancient Greek word ‘Angelos’ meaning ‘messenger’. Truly, Angels are regarded as ‘Messengers of God.’ They are pure beings of divinity who want to help us in all areas of our lives. It is possible to sense their presence around us, and in some cases even see and hear them.
Dr. Sneh Desai is an expert motivational speaker, inspirational coach and leader. After his Mind Power workshop had made an impression, I had bought his book ‘I believe in Angels, do you?’ in curiosity of the connection with my own angel. In this book, he goes into the details of types and names of different angels, sensing their presence, ways of connecting with them and asking for help in various areas.

Ask for an angel’s guidance from your heart’s deepest, honest desire..and you may find what you are seeking!

Key Highlights:

“Remove the clutters and stagnant energy in your life to make space for Angels.”

“I accept divine guidance and I am always safe. I trust my higher self.”

“You get gut feelings, tingling sensations or intuitive hunches to feel the presence of an angel.”

 

This post is part of the #AtoZChallenge 2017 Blogging from A to Z: http://www.a-to-zchallenge.com/. I write about my spiritual and personal growth influences from A to Z.

Read my previous posts in chronology:

A: A New Earth 

B: Brahma Kumaris

C: Chicken Soup for the Soul

D: Dialogue with Death 

E: Eat Pray Love 

F: Finding a purpose in life

G: GANDHI

H: Healing with Chakras

 

F – ‘Finding a purpose in life’ by R. M. Lala #AtoZChallenge

F – ‘Finding a purpose in life’ by R. M. Lala #AtoZChallenge

“God has a plan and purpose for each one of us. The purpose may not be something grand, though we could well be led to something much bigger than what we may have imagined.”  ~R. M. Lala.

We had the privilege of knowing author Mr. R.M.Lala personally as our family friend and philosopher guide. Russiuncle – as my siblings and I fondly called him since we were kids, had a special place in our home and hearts. We admired his tender-heartedness and his benevolent attitude to life. He had a charming presence with an infectious aura of optimism. We loved his sense of humour. Our respect for him grew multifold when he battled cancer in his last days with immense strength and wisdom.

Man always has and continues to strive to know his purpose in life. Why is he here and what place does he hold in this chaotic world? In ‘Finding a purpose in life’, Mr. Lala speaks about 26 people who inspired the world, their thoughts and what led them to pursue deeper meaning in lives. They include Mahatma Gandhi, Jamsetji Tata, Mother Teresa, Dr. Abdul Kalam, Sudha and Narayan Murthy and others who made an impact. By sharing their stories, he stimulates the reader to think of his or her own purpose in life.

Key Highlights:

“We need to examine our lives daily, where we spend our times and our energies.”

Man wants to know a place where he can anchor his spirit, find a direction and pursue a purpose beyond his own advancement. Those who find it have a sparkle in their eyes even at eighty years of age; those who don’t look vacant-eyed even at forty.

“Dreams need not die in the face of unfavourable circumstances. They may only be delayed. There is a right time for everything.”

“As my sufferings mounted, I soon realised that there were two ways in which I could respond to my situation –either to react with bitterness or seek to transform the suffering into a creative force.”

Russiuncle, having left behind a legacy of inspiration, fondly remains in our memories.

 

To buy this book, click here:

http://amzn.to/2mVj4nr

Other books by Mr. Lala:

This post is part of the #AtoZChallenge 2017 Blogging from A to Z: http://www.a-to-zchallenge.com/

Read my previous posts in chronology:

A: A New Earth 

B: Brahma Kumaris

C: Chicken Soup for the Soul

D: Dialogue with Death 

E: Eat Pray Love 

 

Image courtesy: http://rmlala09.blogspot.in/ 

 

 

9 life lessons I could relate to lessons from running

9 life lessons I could relate to lessons from running

“Running has taught me, perhaps more than anything else, that there’s no reason to fear starting lines…or other new beginnings.” ~ Amby Burfoot

The Standard Chartered Mumbai Marathon recently saw its 14th edition completing in all its glory. The streets of Mumbai came alive in the early hours with hoards of cheerleaders, music bands, people lining up to cheer their folks, runners across different categories reaching the finishing line in exhilaration – it’s an extremely buzzing atmosphere every year.

Now, I have always been a sport enthusiast and a fitness freak but never so fond of running. However, last year I decided to attempt running purely for fitness reasons and also to satiate my fetish for attempting the new. And it turned out to be quite an experience to be part of a marathon training group and subsequently run three 10k marathons. What I landed up learning while running is I realised what we all learn from life everyday. A few take-aways I would like to share here:

  1. Action – We all think of doing so much in life, but very few take the necessary steps to initiate an action plan. Dreams will only remain in our wish-list until we act upon them. Action counts.
  1. Motivation – Self-motivation is the key to achieve our goals. Life’s path, just like the running path, is uneven with several twists and ups and downs. What we constantly tell ourselves, the inner dialogue we have and how we push ourselves is what really matters at every step.
  1. Team Strength – When we work together in a group of like-minded people with common interests, the strength that we derive from each other is unparalleled. Being a part of an extremely enthusiastic training group (read related links below) has been highly inspiring and encouraging. A big reason I could push myself out of the bed in the early hours and put on the running shoes. 
  1. Setting goals – When I began training, I could barely complete 1km. of constant running. Then I started setting small goals – running up to that electric pole without stopping, running on a trot until 5 songs on my playlist got done, running for 20 minutes non-stop, etc. and thereby gradually increasing the targets. Within a few weeks of training, I could manage to run my first 10k marathon! Setting short-term goals is the key to long-term success. Small steps lead to bigger steps; small achievements lead to bigger achievements.
  1. Mind over body – In running as in life, it is the mind that rules over the body. Runners often suffer from cramps mid-way through the marathon, get dehydrated or have to face extreme climatic conditions. It is their unflinching will-power that keeps them going towards the finish line. So in life, we got to endure with our inner strength to move ahead and hurdle all tribulations until we reach our destination.

Strength doesn’t come from what you can do. It comes from overcoming the things you once thought you couldn’t

  1. Slowing down – During the course of my training, I experienced discomforting pain in my knee for the first time. I had to let it heal and was forced to take a break. In life too, sometimes situations leave us with no choice but to take a pause. It is then essential to rejuvenate and restart.
  1. Enjoying the journey – As kids we were taught that participating in activities is more important than winning. And as adults we also realise that it’s enjoying the journey that counts as much as reaching the destination. Being out in the open close to nature in the wee hours of the morning, with uplifting music for company and great team spirit around, made the experience a lot more fun. Not to mention the exuberance of finishing a marathon. In which ways are you making your life’s journey enjoyable?
  1. Getting out of our comfort zone – Every instance in life when I decided to venture into something seemingly difficult, I have grown immensely as an individual. My self-confidence took a huge leap. It is extremely vital to stretch ourselves every once in a while, challenging our resilience and expanding it. Growth truly lies in stepping out of our comfort zones.
  1. You are on your own – You start, you run the marathon and you finish on your own. Even though everyone is running together towards the same finish line, you are alone in your race. People will advise and encourage and be around, but you got to run to the finish line on your own. You and your thoughts. You and your self-talk. You and your journey. Isn’t it just the same in life?

Related links:

http://www.striders.in/training-programs/striders-training-program/

http://www.jollygymkhana.in/activites-marathon.html

Featured image courtesy: Pixabay

 

Practicing gratitude is a magical attitude to live with

Practicing gratitude is a magical attitude to live with

“Gratitude can turn common days into thanksgivings, turn routine jobs into joy, and change ordinary opportunities into blessings.” ~William Arthur Ward

My first blogpost in the new year – it is gratitude that comes to my mind. For everything that came into my life last year, feeling overwhelmed with people and things that I am blessed to have. Looking forward to the new year with a sense of humility and grace.

There have been innumerable moments of despair, like there is with everyone, when life seemed bleak and hopelessness crept in. As I kept seeking answers from the universe, I was drawn towards many self-help books that explained the mystical ways of the universe. Books that touched upon the various aspects of spirituality and the cosmos. One of the many books that had an impact on me was the iconic bestseller ‘The Secret’ by Rhonda Byrne. And one of the many practices it mentioned that touched upon me was the attitude of gratitude.

We are often habituated to look at all the negative things in our lives, focusing on our problems, the lack of something, anything that is missing, stuff we don’t have and our complaints.

Gratitude is riches. Complaint is poverty. – Christian Science Hymnal

I asked myself, how could I be grateful for what I have when I have lost everything I wanted? I asked myself, why should I say thank you to life when it has cheated on my kids and me? As I continued reading the powerful processes explained in ‘The Secret’, something inside of me stirred. I was willing, though reluctantly, to try the exercise of gratitude.

When we decide to change direction, acknowledge everything that we do have and be thankful for that, a significant shift in our energies takes place. When we appreciate the simpler pleasures of life, the universe opens up bigger opportunities of happiness. Gratitude works like an antidote to dissatisfaction, anxiety and fear. It becomes a shield protecting us from negativity in our lives. It changes our perspective towards life events and people. Gratitude leads us towards the divine light, peace and happiness.

Gratitude is a powerful process for shifting your energy and bringing more of what you want into your life. Be grateful for what you already have, and you will attract more good things. – The Secret

Maintaining a Gratitude Journal

Keeping a gratitude journal wherein we write the things everyday we are grateful for is a life-altering exercise. We do not realize that there is so much we take for granted – if we acknowledge all our blessings, our perception changes and something inside us shifts. Journaling was something I loved practicing so starting an exclusive gratitude journal was simple. What was difficult was recollecting the things I was grateful for.

There were days when I would be so angry and bitter, that at the end of the day I could feel thankful for nothing. That’s when I started feeling grateful for my life, my health, my limbs, my senses. The stuff I so took for granted like the roof above my head, the food I eat, the daily comforts and luxuries I enjoyed. And more importantly, all the people in my life who cared and loved me unconditionally. Just their presence and concern was a huge factor to be grateful for.

Practicing gratitude has changed the way I perceive life. It has helped the healing process immensely. Subconsciously I have attracted abundance in different areas of my life. It has had a positive impact on all my relationships. Even when I think I have little in life, I feel life has given me a lot. Every night, I make it a point to write down at least 5 things that I have felt thankful for during the day. It’s a daily chore that sets the tone for peaceful sleep and a positive start to the morning.

Read: http://soulmom.in/everything-new-enriches-lives/

The simple ‘Thank you’ that we were taught as kids, little did we know then the immense power this phrase has. No matter what your life situation is, count your blessings and be grateful. The universe will fill your life with abundance and contentment.

On a closing note – ‘Thank you’ for visiting and reading this blogpost.

Related links:

http://www.oprah.com/spirit/Oprahs-Gratitude-Journal-Oprah-on-Gratitude

http://tinybuddha.com/blog/100-reasons-grateful-today/

Image courtesy: Pixabay

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