Is There a Hole in Your Life?
There are lots of things we reach for to fill that empty space inside. The most common and obvious ones are alcohol, recreational drugs, and medications like painkillers and antidepressants. All of these numb our emotions and help us hide from things we don’t want to feel. There are also the more ‘healthy’ ways that we commonly avoid our feelings, such as excess exercise, shopping, or working very long hours.
All of these are temporary fixes that can momentarily help you avoid feeling depressed, but they don’t solve the underlying problem – you still want more out of life. But how do you fix the hole? How do you find what is missing for you?
There are 3 key things you need to do to help you get your groove back:
1. Take time to get still and be honest with yourself about your life. Even if you don’t like the truth you uncover, the truth is the key to set you free from your pain.
Set aside time to get quiet and talk (or journal) with yourself as if you were your own best friend. Be honest about what you don’t like about your life. What makes you angry? What is less than what you want? What do you wish you had more time or money to do? …therein most likely lies the secret to your emptiness.
I’m going to repeat that - What do you wish you had either more time or money to do? That is the thing you are putting off in life. It is the key to the next step.
Now that you know what you wish you could do, ask yourself this question: if you found out today you only had 4 months left to live, what would you do? Isn’t it time to start filling your hole?
2. Allow yourself to do your favorite thing (other than an addiction). When playing and happy, your brain relaxes and creates new circuitry – providing the most likely moments for an “ah-ha!” to occur. Most people put off doing their favorite thing because they are too busy or it doesn’t pay the bills. But in reality your favorite thing inspires you. It stimulates your mind, heart, energy and spirit.
The more you do your favorite thing, the more alive you are inclined to feel and the richer your life, work and relationships tend to grow to be. Doing your favorite thing helps fill the hole, making your life more abundant and fulfilling on every level.
3. Realize that what you are looking for might not be ONE thing. Often my clients share that they are looking for their passion or mission in life. They want me to help them discover the one thing that will inspire them more than anything.
Here’s the answer: what you are seeking is fulfillment. Yet here’s the challenge – fulfillment doesn’t come from just one facet of your life. It’s not from the ideal relationship, job, home, personal expression or volunteer organization. Why not? Because even if you have one or more of those things, you can still have that hole.
Fulfillment is about your daily life and how you live it. Feeling content comes from an inner sense of self-worth, and self-worth comes from appreciating life every day. Find gratitude for the parts of your life that ARE working.
Be grateful for your home, car, food, clothing and blankets to keep you warm. Appreciate that you have family, friends, and work that pays the bills.
THEN, after you spend several moments appreciating what you do have, begin to look at what isn’t enough. It is from there that you start to shift your life.
When you appreciate what you have each day, it makes it easier to go back to number 1 above and see what you need to shift in your life. It is easier to fill the hole of what is lacking, once you value what is working.Yes, having a coach to help you get clear on what you like or don’t like can be much easier. A really good one can turn your day around in the first session. But even on your own, if you dedicate yourself you can find the deepest spots of happiness within you. And with that I will end with one of my favorite sayings – Life isn’t about arriving to the grave in one perfectly preserved piece, but instead about skidding in broadside loudly shouting “Whoa doggie! What a ride!! (author unknown)
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Disclaimer: This article is not intended to provide medical advice, diagnosis or treat. This information is based on research and knowledge by the author, and the ideas are not intended as substitute for medical advice. As with any products it is suggested that you check with your medical practitioner prior to use. The author disclaims any liability arising directly or indirectly from the use of any products mentioned herein.