Healing is not Linear.

Struggles come to every one of us, but life is not about waiting for the storm to pass, its about learning how to dance in the rain. When we look at the positive side, we learn that there is so much to be grateful for and that there is so much beauty in life. To appreciate the every day blessings in life makes today wonderful. It is possible to live in peace and harmony, with the Grace of God. 

Every one of us is on a journey in life where we are born with unique gifts and capabilities that allow us to reach our true purpose and to fulfill our potential in life. Whether it be a spiritual calling or a personal ambition, it is something which is always a possibility, and demands our full effort, our best intentions and our sincerity. It is only by the Grace of God that this is possible. 

In every cloud there is a silver lining…

Healing is not linear. It is a process, a journey. Recovery and emotional wellness is at times a challenge. Recovery and emotional healing is about being able to put your priorities first, and allowing yourself to heal so that you are capable of looking after yourself. 

According to Mental Health America, recovery is “a process of change through which individuals improve their health and wellness, live self-directed lives, and strive to reach their full potential.” Recovery is possible for all kinds of people, however, the earlier you take steps towards recovery, the easier it is to get better.

Continue reading “Healing is not Linear.”

Spirituality and Recovery.

Recently, I have been listening to the very inspiring Russell Brand. His course on recovery with a 12 step program to help people recover from unhealthy coping mechanisms to healthy coping mechanisms is really wonderful and a gift for us all.

It has led me to delve deeper into trying to understand what it means to heal and to recover. I have realized that there is something very special about reconnecting with God.

I believe that as human beings we are all weak in some way and always in need of God, who encourages us to do good deeds and to strive in His cause. I think that spiritual values are the essence of a good and a successful life, far from worldly values which sometimes bring trouble. But in life, as we function as human beings in this world, we face some situations which are stressful and which invite from us responsibility to do more good deeds. I think we as human beings have to live within a very sensitive balance of doing good and not harming others as well, and not allowing ourselves, or our loved ones to be harmed as well.

This delicate balance means that being spiritual is more important than ever. Spiritual values like faith, guidance, self love, love for others, love for the world, love for creatures, encouragement of good deeds, enlightenment, forgiveness, gratitude, integrity, patience – need to be taught and embedded within our daily lives so that we can experience more peace and harmony on a daily basis, so that we can live with others with trust and harmony, and so that we can all share in a civilized way the joys that are given to us by God.

I believe that God always loves His creatures, and that we need to be close to God. Doing as many good deeds as possible allows us to be the best version of ourselves, and to be a force for good in this beautiful world that we all live in. I think if we all do our bit, the world would be a better place. I think that we have all come a long way from before in terms of doing good for others, and I hope that we remain spiritual and on the right path!

A Healing Journey in 2019.

Last year was a special year for me. It was a year filled with healing, with adventure and with wild challenges. It had its seasons, that flowed into each other like a woven tapestry. But unlike the kind of healing journey in ‘eat.pray.love’, this healing journey was a ‘think out-of-the-box’, and ‘the sky is the limit’ kind of journey, where even if I tripped, I would dust myself off and start again. And it ended beautifully, with victories big and small, and the unthinkable conquered, and a spark reignited in the things that I had always hoped for.

The year ended with a celebration of individuality and community, and of how far we had come, and all with a frenzy of fireworks. But in this rollercoaster healing journey, stepping out of my comfort zone was actually the best thing that I could have done, to prove to myself just how much potential existed and what good we were all capable of, all in good spirits.

There were changes- so many changes. In fact, it all seemed to have changed, but all for the better. Like a flower that had its time to bloom, this year seemed to have brought out the best in us. For example, it was the first time for me to go to umrah with my family after 5 years. It was the first time to have completed so many fasts in Ramadan. It was the first time to have connected with my family on such an individual level. All of that took courage.

It was a year of adventure as well. My family and I took a trip that we had never dared of attempting before- a 3 day trip to Hunza. It was breathtaking, exhilarating and also a little frightening. But it was an unforgettable and a memorable experience. It taught me so much about myself that I had never known before. Even the things that I took for granted.

Then, it was a year of hard work and achievements. I managed to complete my short course in journalism. I enrolled in an online course and in an internship, all of which required me to show up, with whatever I had, to do whatever I could. And the practice of doing that was exhausting. But it taught me skills like resilience, cooperation and team work.

I did struggle sometimes, and there were times that tested my patience. But for me, my 2019 was a very special year indeed- one I will always remember, and will be grateful for. If there is one word that could summarize 2019 for me- it would be healing.

To heal and to recover is something which requires patience, and determination, faith and hope. On this journey to heal, I did what I could, with whatever I had.

Healing means different things to different people. I think it’s always something personal but we all have one thing in common which is humanity and our need for kindness and grace.

I feel like I have come a long way from where I started. I feel like my loved ones have also grown too. I love to celebrate my successes and victories, and the victories of others. It just makes life so much more colourful, meaningful, special. Life is so special, and so precious- it truly is a gift. To be able to heal and to recover is a gift from God, and I am grateful for it. I can only hope for the best and pray to God for His Blessings.

Doing Good Deeds.

Doing good deeds is really crucial in your day. Good deeds help you to express your love and gratitude to the Almighty God. Doing good deeds will keep you on the straight path of guidance, and will help you to feel better as a person as well.

Try to do as many good deeds as you are able for the sake of pleasing God. When you do good deeds, you will be more productive with your time, your skills, and your resources – and you will feel hope for being rewarded for it too.

The more good you do, the better you will become at it, until you start feeling better as a force for good in this world.

Understanding the CBT Method.

The Cognitive Behavioural Therapy method is used to help people manage their thoughts to manage their moods. It is a cycle to help us to understand what we have to do in order to manage our moods. CBT talk therapies can help with anxiety and depression.

When you understand the way that your thoughts are linked to how you feel, and how this also makes you behave in some situations, it allows you a greater understanding and an awareness of your self, and your emotional wellbeing. It helps to make some situations more simpler to deal with, so that you can feel a sense of relief.

With a greater understanding of your self, and your emotions, and how you tend to behave in some situations, you will understand what helps you, what you should do more of, what doesn’t help you, and what you shouldn’t do more of.

Examples of thought patterns that are unhelpful. Source: Middlesex University CBT Help Sheet.

Writing a diary with a daily log of the thoughts and the feelings from the different situations that you face in the day is a helpful way of starting the CBT process. Journalling your thoughts and your feelings on a daily basis will allow you to understand what you feel and why you feel it. You can express your thoughts in whatever way you like, in my opinion. Expressing your feelings and thoughts in a diary is often very helpful for emotional healing and recovery.

Talking to a therapist is often the best way to pursue the CBT method of healing, although there are also self help books that teach one how to do CBT. Because the therapist is someone you can confide in, and also is a professional, it may be something you would like to consider.

The Elements of Recovery.

Whilst I have recovered, I have also taken note of the things that have helped me to recover. On the previous page, is a pie chart of the key elements that helped me in my journey towards recovery. 

1. Faith. 

Faith is very important. It is essential that you should pray and be patient and grateful, do good deeds and work on yourself to improve yourself as a person and hold on to the hope that there will be recovery one day by the Grace of God. Only God can help someone to heal. Healing is therefore a very personal and also a spiritual thing. 

2. Family Support.

Thankfully, I have had a very supportive family that has really tried to guide me and to help me towards recovery and healing. I have always relied on my Mum and Dad, and my Mum has always been there for me. I couldn’t have done it without their support. 

3. Mindfulness. 

Mindfulness is a technique that helps you to calm down and overcome feelings of being anxious, depressed or overwhelmed. It trains your mind to be calm, and there are many ways of practicing mindfulness. There are many books available on mindfulness, including art therapy books, podcasts, apps, websites and so much more. 

4. Being Social. 

Being social is very important for every human being, as we are all social beings. We need to function and cooperate with each other in society, and we need to be able to help others too. We all have rights and responsibilities, and so being social is definitely something which we all need to be. Values such as being kind to others, caring, and patient – promote prosocial attitudes, and are very important for yourself. Whilst some may find it challenging at first, it is a skill with which you would improve with practice. 

5. Exercise. 

Exercise is very important. One should find time to do the kinds of exercise that suits them. It could be cardio, or yoga, or swimming – and it will definitely give you results if you persist. Exercise helps to release happy hormones called endorphins which help to overcome low moods. Exercise makes you more resilient and fitter, and it improves your confidence and makes you healthier physically as well as emotionally. One should find the time to exercise – whether at home or at the gym – 3 times a week, for 1 hour a day. 

6. Sleep. 

Rest is very important. Having a good nights sleep will help you to feel better in the next day. Therefore, you should sleep at least 8 hours at night. Having a good rest pattern will help you to recover faster. 

7. Diet. 

Diet is very important in your road towards recovery. Just like treating other illnesses, treating an emotional illness also requires patience, self control and a regulated diet. You should therefore avoid things that cause mood swings such as sugar, and caffeine, processed foods and unhealthy foods. These should be replaced with healthier options such as green tea, coconut sugar, organic foods, gluten free breads, diary free milk and other healthier alternatives that could eliminate the chance of having an inflamed gut. Intolerances do cause mood swings, so it is always better to get it checked out as well.

8. Nutrition. 

Nutrition is very important to help yourself become healthier and to help you heal the brain. As vitamins are needed for you to be healthy, you should take vitamin supplements regularly, such as multivitamins – which are available in every pharmacy or health store. You should also take Omega-3 so that you can help your brain to be as healthy as possible. Remember that a healthy brain needs vitamin B – B6, B12 – are key for maintaining its health. For more information, check: Brain Bio Centre for its research on nutrition and mental health. 

9. Write a Journal. 

Writing a journal is very helpful and a very useful way of recording the good things that you did in your day, how you felt, and your personal goals and responsibilities. It is useful to see all the different ways to write a diary if you are a beginner. You should write your good deeds and what you are grateful for, as well as your goals and ambitions. You should also write daily reflections, and how to avoid pitfalls. 

10. Hobbies. 

As an individual, you should invest some time in your hobbies. Whether its writing or painting, or a sport, it is important that you allow yourself some time in pursuing your hobbies. It will help you to relax and unwind, and to do something that you enjoy.