Sunlight

Depression wants to hide in the shadows

Depression wants to hide in the shadows

Depression abhors light. Depression wants to hide away in the darkness. It wants to stay undercover. It doesn’t want to be seen. Depression feels embarrassing. It doesn’t want anyone to pay attention to it. Why do you think that is? Why does depression hide away in the corner sulking and feeling horrible? Why does depression not want to talk about what is going on?

Today go into the sunlight

Today go into the sunlight

Answer: because when depression is seen, it loses its power. Depression simply cannot survive in the sunlight. It cannot continue to live in a light environment. If there is sunlight coming into the room, depression will seek the dark shadows. If a sunny, happy person walks into the room, depression wants to sneak away, leave the party early. Stare at a picture on the wall until the sunny person has gone. Depression is like a seed that doesn’t want to push up through the soil and get born into a beautiful flower. Depression is like a stone turning its face towards the dirt. Depression is like a gnarled tree unable to grow into the light and just giving up.

Seek the sunny side of life

Seek the sunny side of life

Today, go into the sunlight. Whether it means you move your chair into a sunny place, or walk into the sunshine at your break time, or watch a sunny movie that wakes up the laughter within you, whatever means and method you can employ today—make time to be in the sunlight. And like I said, if it is not sunny outside, or you cannot get to a sunny place; make it happen anyway. Meditate on the sun. Close your eyes and imagine a beautiful golden sun above you. Feel the golden rays of sunshine radiate throughout your mind, body and spirit. Feel the warmth and the golden light of that beautiful golden ball of sunlight and bring that sunlight into your soul. Fill yourself with light. Allow the light to open your heart and feel the golden warmth radiate within you. Then, spread the light out. Feel it spreading out to your room, to your building, to your town, your city, your country and to all other parts of the globe. Now you are the center of the sunshine and you are spreading it across the planet. That is how powerful you are my friend. So powerful.

I just tested that myself, to make sure it still works and you know what? It does. I feel incredible and you will too. Now I want to go clean something!!! LOL

Love

Love turns the world. Love is eternal. Love is what we want. Love is all throughout the bible. Love keeps us on the right path. Love holds us together. Love helps us evolve as human beings. Have you ever been in love? The answer is yes. Somewhere in your life, you were in love. Maybe it was with your parent, your sibling, a friend, a person you saw on TV or in the movies. I am not talking about romantic love necessarily—I am talking about the love that brings a sparkle to our eyes, that puts a spring in our step, and a hopeful feeling in our hearts.

So happy smiling cat

So happy smiling cat

Love is an intense feeling of affection. We feel it when we see baby animals. A little Panda baby, a baby elephant, or a baby zebra. Seeing that small, perfect little animal brings out the love in ourselves. Advertisers and marketing people try to stimulate our love when they show pictures of people falling in love, or an older couple holding hands. They want us to go “ahhhh….” And have our hearts open.

It's in love

It’s in love

We all experience love. Sometimes however, when our hearts have been broken, we feel that love can never live in our hearts again. Sometimes we close our hearts to love. Someone will come along and be loving, and we will shut them out, because we don’t feel we can ever love again. We are afraid of opening our hearts and falling in love and then having that love be crushed. The fear of having our hearts broken, will stop us opening our hearts to any more love.

But when we do that, when we close our hearts to love, we are endangering ourselves. We run the danger of becoming inflexible and cold, and hard-hearted. Sometimes when I was in the middle of a bout of depression it felt like I had fallen into a pit of misery where love could not possibly survive. Everything was dark; and I wanted to keep it dark. I did not want the light of love to touch me in any way. I felt protective of my heart. I couldn’t allow my heart to be hurt again. Then one day, I realized that I was killing myself. By not allowing love to flourish in my mind, body, and spirit, I was shutting out the sunlight of my soul. I was closing down the one thing that makes us human—love.

Even lions fall in love

Even lions fall in love

Even the sound of the word is loveable. Love. Say it out loud, love. It is soft and vulnerable. There are no harsh consonants or curt vowels. Love. It feels vulnerable and hopeful at the same time. It also feels strong and powerful. Love. To be loved and to love is a generous way to live. But sometimes depression can make love seem like an impossible thing. When I was depressed I expected love to come from outside of me. I thought that someone would come along and show me love, and that maybe, maybe I could then cautiously show them love too. But have you noticed, love in its purest form comes from within.

Awww so in love

Awww so in love

We have to experience love from within to be able to show it to the world. Many times we think that love must come from the other person. That they must love us no matter how badly we are behaving. And of course, love will do that. People will love other people even though they do behave badly…but when it goes on, and on and on—the bad behavior becomes unacceptable. I believe that is what finally brought me out of my depression. I was being loved, and yet my behavior was making me so unlovable, how long could I really expect to be loved. How long could I expect other people to love someone who did not love themselves?

Today, is about love. It is about loving yourself. I am with you all the way. I say it out loud and boldly, “I love myself, just the way I am right now.” And here’s the thing. I am overweight, old and sometimes crabby. I know this about myself, and yet I can still say, “I love myself.” And that is what you have to do for you. It’s no good someone else coming to you and saying, “I love you.” If you don’t love yourself first, no amount of love will make you experience it. Love means loving the imperfections. Love means loving yourself just the way you are, and just the way you are not. Today, look in the mirror, and say, “I love you just the way you are.” Tell yourself what you love about you. “I love your strength. I love that you are looking in the mirror and telling yourself that you love you.” I love that you are alive and still kicking.” ”I love your tenacity.” As I am telling myself that I love myself, I can hear you telling yourself that you are loving yourself. It’s a blast! And remember this…..love spreads. It’s like throwing a pebble in the water—love ripples out—so expect some ripples of love to flow your way today.

puppy love

puppy love

Family

We call each other brother and sister

We call each other brother and sister

Family is a wonderful thing. It can also be a horrendous thing. People love their family, and some people hate their family. The reason is that we mostly think of family as those people who were born in close relationship to ourselves. Our mom and dad, siblings, cousins, aunts, uncles and grandparents. But really, we are all family. I have heard that in some places, people take on family members as needed. For example, a person who has no mother, can take on a motherly figure and treat that person as their mother. Someone who has no father, meets a man who acts like a fatherly figure in their life. People call each other sister and brother, even when they are not related. So who is your family really?

We just have to reach out

We just have to reach out

Answer, everyone. Seen from space, the earth is a tiny ball with an iron core moving and spinning through the atmosphere. We can’t even see human life from such a distance.And as we get closer and see people moving about we all look exactly the same. And if you have ever talked with a stranger, and shared ideas and thoughts, you will soon learn that we actually are all the same. We all want to be part of a family. We all want to love and be loved. We want to feel that we belong. Yet when we are depressed, we feel like we don’t belong. That we are unlovable. When I was really depressed, that’s how I felt. I felt that no one cared. More accurately, as I look back I realize that I was the one who didn’t care. I couldn’t care if my children had school lunches or not. I couldn’t care if I looked a mess or not. I just didn’t care about myself or anyone else. I am here to tell you today, right now in this moment, that I care. Other people care. You and me, we just have to reach out.

People are waiting to feel and experience

People are waiting to feel and experience

You may not have family. You may not be as lucky as the man who was so depressed all he could do was reach to the telephone and call his dad for help. You may be that depressed but feel there is no one to reach out to. Maybe you feel all alone in the world. You are not. You may feel that way, but you are not alone. I am writing this just for you. You alone. You are someone I care about. Even if we haven’t actually met. I know you. You are awesome and amazing and wonderful. You are a human being on the planet and as a human being you are wanted. You have a special gift that people are waiting to feel and experience.

Finding a familiar in a stranger--Val Gee

Finding the familiar in a stranger–Val Gee

Today, reach out and find your family. Maybe it is someone you know, or maybe it is a stranger. Okay, I don’t want you to be all crazy and walk up to a stranger and say, “Will you be my mom?” I am talking about connecting on a soul level. Smile at an older person who reminds you of a mother or a father—it will open up your heart and remind you that we are all family. Think about what happens in a crisis—people reach out and help complete strangers. Well we are in a kind of crisis today. We have technology that links us to almost every part of the world. Yet, what we need to remember is that we are all family and we need to connect with people. You may be seeing the differences in people: color, size, shape, culture—but from a bigger picture we are all the same. We are family. We are familiar, and we are all descendants of one common ancestor long ago. So today, it’s about family, and finding the familiar in a stranger.

Snow

Today is about snow. Don’t worry if you never see snow. If you live in the desert or some sunny place that never gets snow. Or you live in a place that does get snow, but it’s not winter right now. I am talking the concept of snow.

Snow is frozen water. It comes down from the sky and covers the land in white. It falls thick or thin. It comes down in great chunks of white, or slight wisps of almost white that it hardly seems like snow. As soon as it begins to fall, the snow ploughs come out in force—especially if you live in a city like Chicago. Snow ploughs and salting trucks. People wear their warmest coats, hats, scarves and gloves. Children love the snow because it’s a chance to play. Older people generally hate the snow because they have to shovel it away which is hard work. Or they fear slipping on the ice and breaking something. Snow can clog up the freeways. Snow can cover a hill and become a playground for sledding.

It's Fun Making Snow Angels

It’s Fun Making Snow Angels

Young couples may make snow angels and laugh and throw snow balls at each other. Movies may show lovers in a sled being pulled by a horse and have a gentleman at the reins ignoring their kisses.

Snow is a magical thing that can turn winter into a wonderland, or a barren landscape into a magical scene. Snow in other words, is what you make of it.

A very bright light that mimics the sunligh

A very bright light that mimics the sunligh

When it snows, or rains, or is sunny outside, our mood changes. There is even an illness caused by lack of sun: SAD Seasonal Affective Disorder. It is a type of depression that occurs at a certain time of year; usually winter. One way to help SAD is to have Light Therapy. It is a special lamp with a very bright light that mimics the sunlight. Patients are asked to sit a couple of feet away from the light box for about thirty minutes a day, usually early morning to mimic sunrise.

Living Life Fearlessly

Living Life Fearlessly

Today is about looking for the brightness of snow. It’s about seeing the goodness in things. Everything has two sides to it. Black and white. You could not have black without white. Up and down, you could not have up without down. Near and far—you get the picture. Some people look at snow as a chance to play and have fun; others look at it with fear and trepidation. What are you looking at today? Are you seeing snow as a chance to play, or a chance to be scared? What is scaring you? Whatever it is, there is another side to it. Whatever you are afraid of, there is an aspect that says, ‘do not be afraid.’

Snow is either wonderful or terrible. It’s a point of view. The same people who hate snow, will be the same people who hate warmth. So today, be a lover of snow. Love the thing in your life that you are usually not loving. Love the snow in your life. See the beauty in your life. Love the clean, fresh aspects of your life. Find the magic in your life. Snow is magical after all. It falls from above and covers the land in purity. Allow the light of the world to fall upon you today. Allow the snow of life to purify your spirit, your soul, your mind, your body. Mediate on being covered with the purity of snow. Feel the coolness and freshness fill every part of your being. Let it snow, let it snow, let it snow.

Parking

This is not just about parking a car, this is about parking in general. Parking means to put something in a place and leave it there for a while. “Can I park in your office for a while?” “Can I park my car in your driveway?” “Can I park my kids with you for the afternoon?” Parking is about leaving something somewhere else. We don’t even think about it. I am going to the grocery store and I need to park my car….it’s obvious. I don’t think about it before I go—unless of course I’m into parking karma: “Let a parking space appear just where I need to be.’ I’ve done that and it seems like a magic. I have willed a parking space into being and boom, there it is. A car pulls out just as I arrive, and it is in exactly the right spot.

This is not just about parking a car

This is not just about parking a car

Recently a friend and I did that and it felt like magic. We had been driving around the coffee shop trying to find a parking space, and then we asked for one, “Please let someone pull out and leave a parking space in front of the store.” And boom like magic it happened. We felt like magical beings. It was wonderful.

But I’m not talking about that kind of parking. I am talking about the kind of parking a depressed person tends to do. I was one, so I know. In fact, I can go back as far as a teenager. As I mentioned earlier, my mom died when I was eleven, and so I was a motherless teen. Fortunately, my best friend had the most wonderful mom in the world. Mrs. Dawson. She was fabulous. I went to my friends house every weekend and slept over. Sunday morning we would wake up and the kitchen was always filled with the smell of egg and bacon, toast, and baked beans—hey I’m originally from the UK and that’s the kind of breakfast we love. Anyhow, Mrs. Dawson was so wonderful to take me in like that and I will appreciate her generosity for the rest of my life.

But—I also took my problems and parked them with my friend. I always had a story about my mean step mother and how she had made me do the ironing, or not given me an allowance. What a brat I was. And I expected my best friend to always be interested. Until this one day, I arrived as usual at the weekend and began telling one of my sob stories, when my friend and her brother began to sing. “Don’t tell me your troubles, I’ve got troubles of my own. Don’t tell me your troubles, just leave me alone….” They were laughing of course. They were not so mean to just sing it deadpan and serious into my face. But I got the message. I was parking my troubles at their doorstep and expecting them to be interested.

Parking my troubles

Parking my troubles

I thought people would be interested in my nasty step mother and her wicked ways—and for a time they were. But over, and over, and over. It’s too much for a person to bear. We can’t keep on parking our troubles on other people, especially people who love us. It’s too hard for them to sing the song, “Don’t tell me your troubles….” But I bet in their hearts they wish you would stop.

I remember my therapist, yes I got a therapist when I had Bells Palsy, but that’s another story I will tell you later….but I remember her saying to me, “Val if you need to tell your story, come and tell it to me. We all need someone to listen, but don’t be telling all your friends about it all the time. That’s what I am here for, to listen.”

I heeded her advice. I stopped telling my sob stories all the time. Today it is time to stop parking your problems on everyone else. It is time to move on. Put your mind in shift. Drive away from parking your troubles onto people. If you need to tell your problems to someone, find a therapist like I did. It is refreshing to do that, because a therapist is a great parking spot for your problems and troubles. They have chosen to be a parking spot for troubles. Your friends and family, co-workers and bosses did not. Once or twice, yes of course it’s okay to share your troubles but every day? No. Today, as soon as you realize you are parking your troubles again; put your mind into shift and drive your thoughts in another direction. The best way to do this is to let them drive for a while. Ask them a question. “How are you doing today?” And then sit back in the passenger seat and listen. You don’t have to be parking your troubles, let someone else do it. Or better still, find an uplifting topic. “Hey do you remember your last vacation. What was the most wonderful thing you remember about it?” Or, “I hear your son is getting married, how are the wedding arrangements going?” Or, “I’m looking for something new to do this weekend, do you have any ideas?”

Move your mind into shift

Move your mind into shift

Today stop parking your troubles and move your mind into shift. Change gears and move forward. Ask questions and keep driving to a new destination. A new topic. A new interest. Focus on the other person and let them drive the conversation. You will feel better as a result. They will feel better as a result. Result—Forward motion my friend. Forward motion.

Stairs

Do you ever think about stairs? Most likely not unless you are an architect. file7191239966317 (1) They can be small or large. Big sweeping staircases and narrow short staircases. Stairs take us places. Stairs take you up, or down. Stairs are amazing things. They have to be a certain way for our feet to have room. A short tread and you wouldn’t have enough room for your foot. Too long, and you would have to take many steps.

Stairs through the woods

Stairs through the woods

I had a stairway when I went to primary school that went through a wood. The stairs were edged with logs, and in between was about two feet of woodland path. I loved climbing those stairs. They didn’t even feel like stairs, more like a secret pathway. Perhaps you have been on one like that, through a wooded area?

Maybe you live in an apartment block without an elevator, and you walk up concrete stairs, or at work there maybe some stairs leading up to the front door of the building. You will notice that as you go about your daily life, you are bound to come across stairs. For people with disabilities, stairs can be a real difficult place to be. Fortunately, many places have ramps beside the stairs, so that wheelchairs can be easily maneuvered up and down. For today, we are going to talk ramps as being the same as stairs. They take us up and down.

For today, find a stairway or a ramp that takes you up somewhere. It could be just a few feet up or many feet up. It doesn’t matter how high the stairs or the ramps are, it is about going up. We tend to think of positive thoughts lifting us up, and negative thoughts taking us down. Today every time you walk up a stair or go up a ramp, you are going to think something positive. For example, I am on a planet I am alive. I am moving, I am alive. I am able to maneuver up these stairs, I am alive.

And when you go down the stairs or ramp, you are going to be aware of letting go. I am going down and leaving the past situation, issue or relationship that has caused me pain or sorrow behind. It is in the past. I am no longer at the effect of this thing. I am ready to let go. With each descending step I am letting go of the past. And with each ascending step I am walking into my new future.

Stairs help you let go

Stairs help you let go

Don’t worry if you find yourself on the stair and can’t remember if you are letting go of the past or walking into your wonderful future. … these are your stairs, your life and you can make it any way you want it to be The stairs are simply a reminder that you are in charge of your life…and now is the time to let go of the past and walk into a new tomorrow.

A new tomorrow that is made up of this moment. This moment is the making of your new life. It doesn’t mean that everything is necessarily going to change drastically, or that someone will come into your life and make everything fabulous. This is about you being in charge of you. You are taking charge of your life and you are opting to make good choices. So stairs today my friend. Stairs help you let go, they tread away the old and step into the new. Today is about the new. No matter how old, or how long you have suffered, you are here now and you are making different choices. You are a life warrior and today you are stepping into a new way of being…a gorgeous talented being who deserves to step out with joy, confidence and purpose.

Water

Water is the Most Wonderful Thing

Water is the Most Wonderful Thing

A Bathroom Faucet a Blessing

A Bathroom Faucet a Blessing

Ever think about water? It’s so necessary to our life and yet we rarely think about it. Oh yes, if you work out, or read about being healthy, you will know that you are supposed to drink a certain amount of water each day. But what about water itself? Water is a way of washing clean the mind, body and spirit. Have you ever dragged yourself out of bed and stood under the shower? Allowing water to cascade over your head and down your body to your toes. Water is the most wonderful thing. And for many of us on the planet it is clean, and drinkable and good. It is a blessing. Not everyone has it. Not everyone has a shower or a bathtub or a faucet.

Beside the Ocean

Beside the Ocean

If you have to opportunity to bathe or shower in water, think of it as a gift from God, or from creation or the universe. Somebody came before you and built a home where you have water coming into the pipes. All you have to do is turn on a tap and out comes all this lovely, clean refreshing water.  Maybe you are lucky enough to have a gym with a swimming pool, or even have your own swimming pool. Maybe you are lucky enough to have a Jacuzzi, or a bath tub. Or maybe you are lucky enough to have clean water coming out of a tap and you are able to drink it. May be it is raining today where you are and you are lucky enough to enjoy the rain pouring down from the heavens watering the planet, feeding the plants, the flowers and the trees. Maybe you are lucky enough to live on a lake, or beside the ocean. Whatever place you live in, today it is about water.

Water is cleansing. It is not accident that the bible talks about washing feet, and baptizing people in water. Water has a healing power beyond any other. It is the opposite of air, water cleanses. It refreshes. It makes dirty things clean. That is what today is all about…healing and cleansing. Maybe you are reading this and you have already gotten dressed for the day….if that is so and you are able to bathe this evening…then do so. If you have not yet showered for the day…do so. If you do not have the ability to shower or bathe, take a glass of water and drink. Feel the water cleansing your body of all toxins. Feel it cleanse your soul of depression. Feel it washing away all past thoughts of guilt or should and shouldn’t have’s. Water has an immense power to cleanse and today we are going to take the opportunity to cleanse ourselves. Whether you bathe or drink, or gaze…let your gaze rest on water. Allow your mind, body and spirit to be cleansed and purified. No more guilt. No more negative thoughts, no more past. Just today we are cleansing ourselves with water. Oh…and just in case you are thinking it has to be a big water deal…it doesn’t. You know how much or how long you need to be with the water. Enjoy. Enjoy, enjoy. Wash away anything negative and allow all positive things to come into your space. Enjoy.