Happy Easter Monday!!!! For Christians, today is the day that is to mark the resurrection of Jesus Christ. The day Christ rose from the dead after he died for our sins. Amazing right? If I think about it, whatever I did in the past is irrelevant if I make a decision to change and do better. This got me to thinking, there is never a reason for us to condemn ourselves because we ALWAYS have a choice to change our behavior and do better. So why do so many of us beat ourselves up over things we just can’t change?!?!
If you are beating yourself up about a choice you’ve made in the past – how’s that working for you? Feeling guilt and remorse for something you’ve done that hurt yourself or someone else is OK. Let me explain. It means that you have a conscience. But, once you’ve apologized for whatever you did and made a decision to do better next time – that should be the end of it. Holding on to that guilt and shame is doing nothing for you or anyone else for that matter. Wait, actually, what it does is make you feel bad about yourself. When you feel bad about yourself, you tend to make poor decisions for yourself and eventually many of us tend to isolate ourselves. I remember after my divorce feeling so many different emotions. Some of those emotions were feelings of guilt and shame for not making things work. I started feeling bad that my kids’ lives were totally disrupted and to watch them cry because they couldn’t see their daddy everyday was heartbreaking. It’s a horrible feeling to watch people you love hurt because of choices you’ve made or were a part of making. HOWEVER, holding on to those feelings was not helping me. In fact, it was hurting me and my ability to not only parent but to live a happy and fulfilled life. Of course I needed time to mourn the loss of the dream – happy family with parents under one roof and kids having both parents around. But I eventually realized that after taking a bit of time to recognize what my role was in the dissolution of my marriage, and accepting what had been done – moving forward, forgiving myself, forgiving my ex, and making a choice to do better next time – was really the only viable option. At least the only option that made sense. Sitting depressed and angry was getting old – quick. So why do I tell you this story? I tell you because it does not matter what you did yesterday, it matters what you do today – right now. Make a choice. Do better. Move forward.
You know, depression is a real thing. Trust me, I know. I get it. But if you are not able to enhance and stabilize your mood on your own so that you can feel better about yourself, please, please, please seek help and support. Contact your local pastor, seek medical advice/attention, pray, do whatever you have to do to positively help yourself. If you have a friend that is depressed please reach out to them and let them know you’re there for them. In some cases, they will need more than just a shoulder, and in those cases professional support is needed. But in other cases, knowing someone cares makes a world of difference. For me, being reminded that I am loved unconditionally by Jesus and that He’d never left my side was enough to help get me out of that dark place to start making decisions that would help me. I’m just sharing my experience and truth with you. Take from it what you will. But it’s for this reason that Easter is so significant to me. Literally, this whole concept of Easter – saved my life in that I had renewed hope.
So, once you are feeling better or at least have found that hope for a brighter today and tomorrow, make the choice to move forward and choose to live better. Easier said than done right? Well, staying in that dark place is doing nothing good for anyone. I’m not minimizing or trivializing your experience, but read this carefully because I’m speaking directly to you – You have so much in you to give and contribute to this world. Give yourself a chance to share your greatness!
If you need to chat – I’m here. Email me at email@example.com, tweet me @jenslayvision, comment on fb at www.facebook.com/jenslayvisionary. Again, I’m only a click away if you need me.
Remember, believe in you,