Stay in the moment

In this moment I am fine. 

2017 was a pretty good year for my family, for my co-workers and me, and for my side business as a speaker. Yet I feel a constant pull toward darkness. I suffer from Seasonal Affective Disorder; from October through February I feel as if I'm in quicksand. It's as if my vision changes and I literally see each event differently. That makes it even harder to read the news than it was the rest of the year, as I have a more difficult time finding the positive. And the holidays bring stress in spite of my best intentions. I have much less energy at a time when I need more. 

But in this moment I am fine.

And in this moment I am fine.

Still fine. 

There are many experts on mindfulness. I'm not one of them. But I have learned, slowly, to be present. To note what's going on around me. And to note my feelings at that time. I slow down, I take deep breaths, and I engage. When I reflect on the past weekend, of course the best parts were when I was focused on one thing only: going on a drive with my family to look at Christmas lights and making Christmas cookies at my sister's house. Those were the times I was completely in the moment, not ruminating, reminiscing, or worrying. Not checking my phone. Not making to-do lists. Not trying to do many things at once.

I will keep taking my Vitamin D and using my daylight therapy lamp. I will be better about going outside at lunchtime to get natural light. I will connect with people instead of withdraw. And perhaps most significantly, I will focus on the now more than on the past or the future. 

Stay in the moment.

Some people experience crisis or distress far beyond what can be addressed in a blog post. The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline is a national network of local crisis centers that provides free and confidential emotional support to people in suicidal crisis or emotional distress 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. You can reach them at 1-800-273-8255. 

Photo by Joel Herzog on Unsplash

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