Everyone has a story. Everyone carries a load that’s too heavy to bear at some point. Here’s the four perspective shifts I used to overcome deep sadness in my moment of reckoning.
Most of us go through it at some point in our lives. Or we know someone who has.
You can usually recognize it by the feeling. That feeling of being stuck, walking around in a fog, getting from one day to the next with no real sense of purpose, feeling dissatisfied while seeing no way out.
Maybe it feels like nothing ever goes your way. The world is against you. You’re easily frustrated or provoked, more irritable or quick-tempered than you want to be.
Some people isolate and keep the whole world out, feeling ashamed, broken and not good enough.
Still others mask the pain with addictions, obsessions or dependencies, and even a little bit of recklessness.
These are all faces of deep sadness. They’re indicators of a person who’s anchored themselves in the worst of it.
The Truth About Deep Sadness
My experience with the deep sadness looked like all of the above.
The thing about sadness is it gives you the reasoning, the logic, you need to stay stuck. And it always points to the outside.
It keeps you focused on an external source of pain — even when the only way out of your pain is to look inside.
But, finally, one day I realized the most important thing about sadness, something that changed my life forever.
That sadness was mine. And I was the only one who could fix it.
If you carry pain on your heart, that sadness is yours. You are the only one who can fix it.
The HEAL Mindset: How To Overcome Deep Sadness
So what if I told you I know how to fix it? What if I told you I learned to heal from deep sadness; therefore, I know you can, too? Would you believe me? Because I believe in you. And that’s why I want to share the healing mindset I know will help you face, heal from, and overcome your sadness.
This powerful mindset can be broken down into four major experiences: hope, expression, affirmation and love. Today, I call it the HEAL Mindset — the four mental shifts that will help you emerge from your sadness.
Hope is the very first thing you need to discover within yourself in order to emerge from your sadness. For me, hope came in the form of a letter from a stranger, someone who had gone through a similar experience.
Those words assured me I could be more than my circumstances. They told me I was capable and worthy of overcoming the pain. That glimmer of hope reminded me I deserved to find joy again.
If you’re broken-hearted like I was, it all begins with the belief that your life can be ok again. If you want to emerge from your sadness, you have to first believe it’s possible.
For you, hope might come in another form. Look for it. Ask for it. Believe in it, and it will present itself.
Once I could see the light at the end of the tunnel, I started expressing myself. I began by sharing my story … and something incredible happened.
The sadness started pouring out of my mind, body and soul. It started to lessen. Each time I told my story, the validation I felt — just from being heard — was transformational.
So I began to turn my pain into creativity using every way I could think of: fine art, painting, journaling, reading, music, etc. I expressed myself through different therapies and hobbies. But most importantly, I shared my story with others.
For you, self-expression may look different. You may want to share your experience with a trusted friend or spiritual coach. Maybe it helps to find beauty in your surroundings, or express the strength in your body through physical activity. Whatever you do, just don’t keep it inside any longer.
At this point in my healing journey, I had rediscovered the hope that life could be different, and I’d begun to lighten my load by expressing my sadness in healthy, positive ways. And those steps had changed me.
I was no longer the same person who felt helpless and broken. But I wasn’t sure who I wanted to be yet either. After healing the pain in my mind, body and soul, I had some rebuilding to do.
That’s when I began to focus on affirmations. I used them to fill the holes others had left in me throughout my life.
You see, when you turn to others to affirm your worthiness, the good feelings don’t stick. You eventually fall back into your old self-loathing patterns and beliefs.
When you fill those holes with your own love, however, you’re healing from the inside out. And that kind of goodness never goes away. So I took every piece of validation I used to look for in others — and I started giving it to myself. And it changed the way I showed up in the world.
For you, affirmations might look like a (dreaded) daily practice until they begin to feel like a deep transformation. The key is to keep pushing through the practice until you get to the feeling. That’s where the good stuff lies.
Now, I talked about the healing power of hope, expression and affirmation, but the last step — love — is a healing gift that you receive after working through the first three.
For me, love, and specifically self-love, is the greatest gift we can give and receive in this world. It’s the antidote to deep sadness, and you’re the only person who has it.
When I finally decided to give this beautiful gift to myself, it wasn’t just me who changed. The way I affected others changed, too. I found new purpose, new ways to contribute, a new sense of fulfillment and clarity, and … happiness.
And that’s what I want for you. Give yourself the gift of self-love, so you, too, can emerge from deep sadness and finally enjoy your life again.
Share With Us!
How do you emerge from periods of deep sadness? What tools did you use to overcome the most challenging moments of your life?
Share with us! We want to know how you overcome deep sadness!
Your story is so important.
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