Early one fall morning in 2009 I experienced the most glorious moment, the sun was shining brightly, trees were swaying in the gentle breeze, and bright autumn colors were glowing everywhere.
Despite the heavenly gift, an associate whom I occasionally bumped into in the office parking lot, was drearily shuffling along toward the entrance.
As she walked by me, her mood was palpably heavy. To my amazement, she never once looked up to the enjoy the beauty and excitement surrounding us.
I greeted her, and with a faint gesture she nodded and said hello. I remarked, "It's a great day, isn't." My comment forced her to break from the trance and address me momentarily. "Oh yeah, I guess it is" she replied.
As I looked into her eyes, I saw what doom and gloom could do to a person. Drooping eyelids, lowly posture, and almost nonexistent energy. I'd known this woman for a few years and knew her to be quiet and reserved. Although she never interacted in meetings, she was warm and friendly in private.
Today was different. The dark shadows of defeat expressed in every expression. Not wanting to push her frail state I let her go. Later, I bumped into her again, this time in the break room. She was quietly sitting eating a tiny meal. Although I was there for a drink of water, I decided to stay a while.
I sat at the table next to her and began with the usual pleasantries. Finally, I said, "are you okay?" With a saddened face and weakened words, she began to describe a picture of great loss. Her husband lost his job, and his job search had been fruitless. The mortgage company threatened foreclosure due back payments, and food was scarce at home.
I sympathetically listened and encouraged her to tell me more. Tears welled up in her eyes, and I began to choke up too, then she said, "I feel so alone, abandoned," "Everything is over," she continued, "There's nothing left."
I was silent for a while. Not knowing what to say I began to share my story of a similar crisis that nearly crushed me. Similarly, my income dried up, payments were missed, and the mounting stress of unpaid bills drove me to despair.
She'd hardly believed it. She had always known me to be very positive. I said to her how not finding a job, and multiple job rejections took a toll on me. I told her that I felt as if life was not worth living. I felt rejected, isolated, abandoned, and as if I was the worst father and husband in the world.
I recalled how my anguish was similar to sitting in a deep narrow hole in the ground, her eyes lit up, and exclaimed, "that's how I feel." It's terrible I said. You feel like the world is out there, but you're stuck in the pit, and it's not pleasant. It's cold, dark, and there's no hope, nothing. It feels dead and empty inside. She nodded.
"What did you do?" she asked. Quietly I said, "I prayed." "You prayed? Did it work?" she inquired. "Kind of," I said. I told her that at first, I didn't feel anything, but then I began to see a small possibility about a business idea. What I felt like a little point of light, a glimmer of hope. I knew it was God. Inspired by the shift, I prayed more intensely. Then I felt as if God himself was shining light into the pit. I felt peace and warm sensations all over my body. She was listening intently and hanging on every. I could see hope coming back. "What did you do?" she asked.
I told her that I had an idea for a website and that I immediately got up, turned on my computer, and just started building it. Eventually, it made money, and it freed me from a dire situation.
Since then I've never looked back. At one time or another everyone faces difficult circumstances that can seize us. We become emotionally paralyzed, it grips our creativity and our ability to bounce back. We feel depleted, defeated, and immobilized.
The most significant medical complaint Americans have today deals with anxiety and depression. Reams of scientific data shows that an emotionally stressed state causes the body to break down into physical illness, while a positive, happy, cheerful attitude promotes health.
How can a person gain and maintain a bright, healthy disposition? Over the years I've received hundreds of emails related to the spiritual malady that brings so much grief to life and have learned a great deal by the experience.
Naturally, I always recommend seeking the help of a qualified professional in the field. Expert advice can go a long way in helping you regain a sense of peace. For many people however, the symptoms are mild and easily fixed. The following two methods can help.
First, you need to understand that a particular embedded psychology is what makes you feel uncomfortable and insecure. The mental pattern is quiet and invisible, but very real to your emotions and nervous system. If you get rid of the deep-seeded mental pattern depression and anxiety will fade away.
Next, you need to develop a robust inner dialog that hampers negativity plus bolsters positivity. Here's how to execute both techniques. Here's how to proceed.
1. Let Go
To let go of the pain-inducing psychology, you need quiet time. The mind can produce the best results when it is calm and still.
Find a place where you can rest and be alone for a while. Close your eyes and take few long deep breaths, do this for two or three minutes.
Once you feel relaxed, begin to picture the center of your brain. Recognize that all negative thought resides in that area of your brain. Decide to let go of any and all psychology that brings you grief. Picture it. Image it.
During this part of the exercise feelings and thoughts might be recalled, for now just observed them; once you've completed this part of the exercise take a long deep breath and begin exhaling negativity from inside your brain. Dramatize the event by seeing yourself blowing out the toxic mental substances, repeat the process two or three times until you feel more peaceful.
Feel how peaceful your mind and body feel. Now it's time to heal. Doctors can help your body heal, but God can help your mind heal, and your God-given ability to visualize is how you reach Him.
Start to see a figure of light appear. It's Jesus. The image of Jesus becomes clearer as He approaches. Jesus is always concerned about your well-being, so you express your feelings to Him. Now watch what Jesus does.
Every person experiences something different, and you might experience something different every time you practice the technique. Be open to the experience and feel the healing.
After the experience just relax for a couple of minutes and begin to open your eyes slowly. Take another deep breath and start to imagine a new life. Practice this every morning and evening.
2. Create Positive Mental Patterns
It could be as a simple as a song, a poem, or better yet phrases from scripture that help create in you an automatic reflex to downbeat thinking.
Read and mentally rehearse upbeat thoughts that empower your psyche. Remember, God is with you, but you have to train your mind to combat the whimsical thoughts that fly into your mind that accentuate doubt, fear, or defeat.
This step becomes easier with time and practice. Once new positive ideas sink deep into your mind, it will help stabilize your mental and emotional state. With your mental and emotional state stabilized you'll experience higher creative flow and happiness. That's how you were meant to live.
I practice the techniques all the time. There isn't a day that goes by without some difficulty or challenge. The essential thing to remember is that we are in control of our mind and that the body obeys the mind. You have the power to heal, and it starts with what you see inside.
I'm happy to report that my colleague pulled through fine. She took to heart our conversation and very deliberately began an intense prayer habit. Her prayer effort became so fierce that she'd often have visions of health, healing, and prosperity.
It didn't take long before her husband was offered a better paying job with increased benefits. This story illustrates just how powerful our mind is when we have faith.
Faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen. (Hebrews 11:1) Reality must exist in the mind before it manifests.