Tips for enduring survival mode…

Are you weary today? Exhausted? Fed up? All kinds of done?

I have talked to so many people who feel they are at the end of their ropes. They are battle-weary, wounded, and on edge.

The events of the last few weeks and months have taken their toll. Fires, floods, wind, rain, lack of power, destruction of property, and worst of all, loss of loved ones.

Hearts are aching, tempers are flaring, and spirits are feeling crushed.

Please know that you matter. Your feelings matter. Your frustrations and heartbreaks matter. And that it is ok, good even, for you to let yourself feel all those feelings. You have been through a trauma and you are grieving—if not grieving for a loved one, you are grieving for the way things used to be, before a fire, storm, or circumstances beyond your control changed everything.

Take a moment to let yourself feel.

I know it doesn’t feel good. I know human nature is to avoid things that cause us pain. But feeling is the way to healing. Your brain needs a moment to absorb the trauma and process it. It’s like your brain needs to update to a new operating system (and we all know the problems that eventually happen if we go too long without updating!).

So today, may I encourage you to take a moment to feel all the feelings. Talk about your experience with a caring friend. Write about it in a letter or journal. Draw a picture of how your feeling. Make a computer graphic to illustrate your current mood. The method is not what’s important. It’s the act of allowing yourself to feel it and getting it out that’s important.

And while you are letting yourself feel, be gentle with yourself.

You have been through a lot. You may even still be in “survival mode.” This is not a time to try and get back to normal or push yourself to do a ton of things. This is a time to let yourself heal. Set small manageable and realistic goals for yourself. You will get back up and running at full speed soon enough, but for today go easy with yourself.

Your measure of a successful day may be as simple just brushing your teeth! That’s awesome! That’s worthy of celebrating!

You are stronger than you know and braver than you feel, but you are also hurting and you need time to heal..jpg

So in case you need permission, here it is:

Be gentle with yourself today and take it easy. Focus on your breathing. Pray. Spend some quiet time with God—even if you’re a little mad at Him (it’s ok, He’s big enough to take it!). And set aside some time (even if it’s just 10 minutes) to let yourself feel. And I promise that eventually, some day, you will begin to heal.

Praying for the battle-weary and hurting hearts today,
Jen

[If you would like to share your story here, please feel free to do so in the comments. And please know that you are not alone! You have a God who adores you and people who care! I care, and would love to pray for you! (and your willingness to share may just help someone else share)]

“In the day that I called, you answered me. You encouraged me with strength in my soul.” Psalm 138:3

“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.” Matthew 11:28-30

“Cast all your anxiety on Him because he cares for you.” 1 Peter 5:7

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