Out of habit your sleepy body begins to stretch. You hear the birds chirping and the morning light oozes through the side cracks of your shades into your half opened eyes.
LIGHT?! OH NO, I OVERSLEPT!
It is 6 a.m. instead of 5 a.m. Right now the coffee is getting sipped only because it is too hot to drink. As soon as it cools off it will be gulped. The time used to sit with scripture has already gone by the wayside so God will have to be happy with me quick typing this blog post while listening to the sounds of the morning in gratitude. Remember, gratitude. No need to beat yourself up when you oversleep. We all do it and sometimes you just need a little more sleep. Here is a quick prayer I taught my very active children when they were very little.
Good morning God. Thank you for another day to work and play. Help me to do my best today. Amen.
Don’t forget the play part ;)
“They stoned Paul and dragged him out of the city, supposing he was dead.” Acts 14:19b
When a person goes through a depressive episode it can feel like being pelted with stones. You try to get up, get away, and find a safer place but to no avail. Truly the struggle can leave a person half dead.
Learned helplessness is a term coined by a well-known psychologist named Martin Seligman, PhD. It refers to a pattern of thinking learned from past experience that encourages the development and sustaining of depression. Learned helplessness manifests itself in phrases like, “I can’t”, “It’s too hard”, and “Why bother.” It tempts a person to give up taking positive action to improve ones quality of life. Spiritually, practicing learned helpless prevents holiness. Think of what would have happened if Sts. Ignatius Loyola, Francis of Assisi, and Teresa of Calcutta gave in to learned helplessness after experiencing failures.
People have lots of reasons why they don’t seek treatment for depression, anxiety, bipolar, obsessions/compulsions or other mental health problems. The reasons seem to be good ones. In 2007, Steven Marcus and Mark Olfson reported in Archives of General Psychiatry that only 3 out of 100 people got treatment for depression. This doesn’t include the other mental health problems listed above.
A self-defeating thought is any thought that gets in the way of a worthy task or goal. We all have these thoughts. Most of us can simply dismiss them as irrational and proceed. However, some of us can’t seem to get such thoughts out of our minds. We ruminate on them and add more to them until we become paralyzed in fear. In the worst-case scenario the endeavor we aspire to falls by the wayside.
Last weekend was the final high school hockey tournament of the season and it marked the end of our youngest son’s high school hockey career. As a mother who has spent the last several years chauffeuring to and from practices, traveling out of state each month, sweating the finances, praying he didn’t get injured, and developing a reputation for being quite a yeller in the stands I must admit that by weekend’s end my emotions were a bit fragile. In fact, within two hours of arriving home I found myself sitting in the car at an Albertson’s parking lot crying my eyes out. Endings are sometimes hard.
But as with all endings there are new beginnings. In fact you can’t have beginnings without endings. So for all the endings you may be experiencing have your cry, be nostalgic, and then look forward.
In my case I’ve already cried. So now I want to be nostalgic and share a post I wrote back in 2010. Here it is: