Nine Paths to Healing

Sometimes life gives you lemons and you get to make yummy lemonade.

And sometimes life gives you lemons and you think you’re making yummy lemonade but then you realize one of the lemons was rotten and it messed up your entire pitcher of lemonade and you really wanted to share that lemonade at the party that you’re going to later but now it’s just ruined and that really sucks and you wish you would’ve realized before squeezing that lemon in there but how could you have known and you’re wondering if you can still drink it and be fine but you’re just sad and confused now.

Aka.. Sometimes we think we’re doing the right thing, but things get messy and we get hurt anyway.

This is about how to move on and feel better once you (or someone else, or life) have squeeze a rotten lemon in your lemonade.

Healing from hurt is scary and hard. So many past emotions (ones we thought we had healed from or ones that were buried deep down within us) come to surface. We can experience confusion, self blame, grief, anger, denial, depression all from one single event or series of events.

But there’s hope. There’s growth. We just have to see it and not give up.

Here’s how:

  1. Drink the lemonade. Just kidding. It's a metaphor. But we have to FEEL THE PAIN to get to the other side of pain. Pushing it away will only save it for later. It’ll come up again. We’ve all experienced this. So, if you’ve gone through something traumatic recently, allow yourself to grieve, cry, yell. Let the feelings roll. Even a good 20 minute crying session can make way for you to feel a little like yourself again for the rest of the day.

  2. Get help. You’re not alone. You’re never alone. Talk to someone. Family, friends, significant other, a therapist, your dog. Find a support group or online forum. Don’t be ashamed of your feelings. We all have them (no matter how well we can hide them sometimes).

  3. Become familiar with what you’re experiencing. There are so many articles out there on every type of painful experience. Reading about what you’re going through is a way to help you understand that your reactions are completely valid.

  4. Do stuff you love to do and do lots of it. Watch a movie. Read a book. It’s okay to spend some time being distracted from the pain. You can’t spend all of your time in #1 (just make sure you spend some time there).

  5. Think big picture. Sometimes it takes looking outside of your life to get a little perspective. I love going into the grandness of nature for this, or listening to the news. Personally, some of the stuff I’ve been through is still nothing compared to what others have been through. This doesn’t invalidate my pain, but it does make me realize how much I have in my life for which to be grateful.

  6. Keep going. If you’ve experienced some deep pain recently, even 20 minutes of productivity can feel amazing. Do small things first and work your way back to being productive. Put on your favorite shirt. Clean up your house a little. Little things can make you feel back in control of your life at least a wee bit.

  7. Find healing methods that work for you. We all go through different things, and we all heal from them differently. Personally, talking to others, therapy, spending time in nature, and meditation are my biggest healers in my life.  

  8. Find compassion. If someone hurt you, try try try not to take it personally. Even if they were super close to you. Hurt people hurt people. We hear this all the time, and it's true. It doesn’t excuse their behavior, but it can make it easier to find forgiveness. Find forgiveness as soon as possible, for your own sake, not necessarily theirs. Also be compassionate with yourself. You don’t have to be fully okay all the time. Allow yourself the time you need to grieve, hurt, or work through anger.

  9. Find gratitude. OMG honey it’s growth time. Not just that “ohhh lets try something new and grow” growth, but that “shit just hit the fan and I have no choice but to grow or else my life will fall apart” growth. It sucks, yep, but you have the potential to learn SO MUCH right now. Take note of what you’re learning, and how those things can be used to help you in the future with how you treat yourself and others. Then, be grateful for that.

Healing can be hard and messy, but with a little consciousness with how you move forward after a trauma or loss, you can come out stronger on the other side. 

Much love, Melissa