Rip off the mask, tear down the walls. Show the world your beautiful self!

Acknowledging: The First Step in Releasing

Tonight I’m feeling despondent, which is strange since I just got home from dancing.

One of the programs I’m following teaches us to acknowledge our feelings, and that they’re neither good nor bad. They’re just feelings. We’re supposed to take a step back and look at them without judgement or blame, but simply acknowledge their existence and, like a researcher, gather data on them.

So I’m looking at my despondency, but I’m trying to find a reason for its existence. Perhaps I ate too little and exercised too much today. Or perhaps I’m more sensitive than usual to being at the club, the sole occupant of a four-top while people I call “friends” are filling the tables around me, some even to overflowing. I sit alone between sets except for the occasional person who stops to chat for a minute or three.

Seeking Explanations Where There May Be None

I’m feeling alone despite the crowd. The rose-colored glasses I once wore which told me these people were my friends instead of just friendly acquaintances have shattered and are of no further use to me.

While everyone else gathers together, making plans for lunches or movies or even vacations together, I’m alone in a crowd. And so, I’m despondent tonight.

By tomorrow, this may all be forgotten as I find myself embroiled in the business of the day and the tasks I’ve set myself. In time, I won’t feel so alone any more because I’ll find a way to rationalize, reason, or even justify my aloneness and how much I appreciate the gift of solitude.

I’ll fix my healthy meals, do my exercises and innercises, cuddle with my cats and write. It won’t be in my face that others have relationships with each other, be they friend, family or something else. Yet, I’ll know that somehow, I’ve missed out. I didn’t learn a lesson I was supposed to learn and it’s left a gaping hole in my life.

But my despondency isn’t just about being alone. As I listened to an acquaintance talk about her new job, I seriously considered looking for something at least part time. I even, for a moment, indulged in some blame. After 2 1/2 years, I should have published something and earned money from it. I should have built up something of a business so I had some kind of income. I should have finished at least one of the books I’m in the middle of writing.

Trying to Avoid Rash Decisions

And yet, a small, almost imperceptible voice whispers desperately Don’t give up yet. You’re closer than you think. Things aren’t as bad as they seem right now. I’m tempted to ignore it, but willing to at least sleep on it. Tomorrow is Friday so at least give it the weekend before doing anything drastic. I have gotten more efficient and motivated lately. I’m writing more. I’m completing articles more quickly, though I have two on my plate right with a third to come on Sunday. I’ve even edited a few more pages of Sasha’s Journey and am now about 30 pages from printing out the whole thing and dissecting it.

But what if I never get it done? Or what if I start reading it through and decide it’s just crap? Or what if I can’t figure out how to get it published, or marketed? The “what if’s” alone are starting to overwhelm me.

I know things will look better in the morning. They always do. A good night’s sleep and some kitty purrs always make the world look brighter.

So I’ll sleep on it. I’ve acknowledged the feeling. I’ve asked myself what it’s all about. I’ve accepted my despondency without judgement or blame.

I’ll sleep on it and by morning, I’ll be ready to formulate a plan…assuming a plan is even necessary. The feeling might just pass. Until it does, I’ll accept my despondency as there for a reason, even if the reason is not yet known to me. Because, sometimes it’s OK to be despondent.

Acknowledging Gratitude

My gratitudes tonight are:
1. I’m grateful for my ever-present therapist.
2. I’m grateful for the new things I’ve been learning lately, and the doors they’re opening to even more lessons.
3. I’m grateful for my solitude even though there are times I’d rather be less alone.
4. I am grateful for the weight I’ve released even though I’m the only one who notices. The changes I’ve made have not only allowed me to release nearly 10 pounds, but have cleared up a lot of the pain I was enduring, and increased my energy as well.
5. I am grateful for abundance: feelings, health, kitty love, smiling faces, peace, harmony, philanthropy and prosperity.

Blessed Be

I invite you to visit my Facebook pages, Sheri Levenstein-Conaway Author and HLWT Accounting. Please also drop by my website, and check out my Hire Me Page. I’ve created these pages as a means of positive affirmation and would be very grateful if you’d “like” them or leave a comment! Thank you!


Comments on: "Acknowledging our Feelings" (8)

  1. That first scenario you just described is so wrong. How little are the people that once claim or acted friend to have the balls to treat you like that and look each other in the face and claim any knowledge of kindness, compassion or forgiveness or human courtesy skills. Does not sound like you lost much–less drama and heartache for the future and a bunch grown up high schoolers, nothing to admire there.

    Here is a list of quotes to cheer you. My favorite is first. I also have a list of Holly Lisle quotes.
    “You must stay drunk on writing so reality cannot destroy you.” ― Ray Bradbury

    1. The first draft of everything is shit. -Ernest Hemingway
    2. Never use jargon words like reconceptualize, demassification, attitudinally, judgmentally. They are hallmarks of a pretentious ass. -David Ogilvy
    3. If you have any young friends who aspire to become writers, the second greatest favor you can do them is to present them with copies of The Elements of Style. The first greatest, of course, is to shoot them now, while they’re happy. – Dorothy Parker
    4. Notice how many of the Olympic athletes effusively thanked their mothers for their success? “She drove me to my practice at four in the morning,” etc. Writing is not figure skating or skiing. Your mother will not make you a writer. My advice to any young person who wants to write is: leave home. -Paul Theroux
    5. I would advise anyone who aspires to a writing career that before developing his talent he would be wise to develop a thick hide. — Harper Lee
    6. You can’t wait for inspiration. You have to go after it with a club. ― Jack London
    7. Writing a book is a horrible, exhausting struggle, like a long bout with some painful illness. One would never undertake such a thing if one were not driven on by some demon whom one can neither resist nor understand. — George Orwell
    8. There are three rules for writing a novel. Unfortunately, no one knows what they are. ― W. Somerset Maugham
    9. If you don’t have time to read, you don’t have the time — or the tools — to write. Simple as that. – Stephen King
    10. Remember: when people tell you something’s wrong or doesn’t work for them, they are almost always right. When they tell you exactly what they think is wrong and how to fix it, they are almost always wrong. – Neil Gaiman
    11. Imagine that you are dying. If you had a terminal disease would you finish this book? Why not? The thing that annoys this 10-weeks-to-live self is the thing that is wrong with the book. So change it. Stop arguing with yourself. Change it. See? Easy. And no one had to die. – Anne Enright
    12. If writing seems hard, it’s because it is hard. It’s one of the hardest things people do. – William Zinsser
    13. Here is a lesson in creative writing. First rule: Do not use semicolons. They are transvestite hermaphrodites representing absolutely nothing. All they do is show you’ve been to college. – Kurt Vonnegut
    14. Prose is architecture, not interior decoration. – Ernest Hemingway
    15. Write drunk, edit sober. – Ernest Hemingway
    16. Get through a draft as quickly as possible. Hard to know the shape of the thing until you have a draft. Literally, when I wrote the last page of my first draft of Lincoln’s Melancholy I thought, Oh, shit, now I get the shape of this. But I had wasted years, literally years, writing and re-writing the first third to first half. The old writer’s rule applies: Have the courage to write badly. – Joshua Wolf Shenk
    17. Substitute ‘damn’ every time you’re inclined to write ‘very;’ your editor will delete it and the writing will be just as it should be. – Mark Twain
    18. Start telling the stories that only you can tell, because there’ll always be better writers than you and there’ll always be smarter writers than you. There will always be people who are much better at doing this or doing that — but you are the only you.― Neil Gaiman
    19. Consistency is the last refuge of the unimaginative. – Oscar Wilde
    20. You must stay drunk on writing so reality cannot destroy you. ― Ray Bradbury
    21. Don’t take anyone’s writing advice too seriously.– Lev Grossman
    22. I’m writing a first draft and reminding myself that I’m simply shoveling sand into a box so that later I can build sandcastles. – Shannon Hale
    23. Wayne Gretzky quote: “You miss 100 percent of the shots you never take.”
    24.”When the world changes around you and when it changes against you — what used to be a tail wind is now a head wind — you have to lean into that and figure out what to do because complaining isn’t a strategy.” – Jeff Bezos
    25. I have not failed. I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work.
    ~Thomas A. Edison
    26.Forget about the consequences of failure. Failure is only a temporary change in direction to set you straight for your next success. Denis Waitley


    • Thank you for your compassion and for the wonderful quotes, Juneta. In reality, it’s not as bad as I made it sound. Much is my own doing. I assumed they were friends who would overlook some of my imperfections, but recently learned they’re simply friendly acquaintances who can download their own trials and tribulations to me, but are not interested (with a couple of exceptions) in returning the favor. So I’ve learned to feign joy and good cheer, immerse myself in the dancing, which always brings me joy, and keep the less attractive parts of myself hidden yet again. It’s a lesson I’ve repeated over and over in the last almost 61 years. You’d think I’d figure it out by now, but yet, I still get lulled into trusting people and exposing my marshmallow center all too often. I take full responsibility for my lack of companions between sets. Sometimes, I’ll wander around and talk to other acquaintances for a bit, but most of them also have a group to sit with. If nothing else, it gives me more time to people watch and as you know, it’s a great way to find characters for my stories!

      I think my favorite quote from your list, though I rarely drink is number 15. Write drunk, edit sober.

      Thank you for caring and for being such a loyal follower.


      • Well, I’m your friend and writer colleague, so showing support and friendship. You’re brave sharing all you do. I share different kinds of things on my blog. We both seem to believe in the laws of attraction and have other things in common too. I enjoy your post. BTW your other blog is looking really good. I like that new look.


        • I believe the gratitude thing you do too, but I don’t keep up with my own regularly.


        • Believe it or not, it’s remembering the gratitudes at the end of my blog posts which keep me sane sometimes. When everything looks bleak, I can always find something to be grateful for. Between you and me, number 5 last night was a bit of a struggle (I always use the last one for abundance) because I struggled with, and finally omitted “friendship”. I know it will come back and that I was limiting my focus to those from last night, even then, ignoring a couple who always seek me out if I don’t find them first. I don’t keep up with it as regularly as I’d like either, but do use it to put things back into perspective now. For instance, I’m no longer despondent. Instead, I’m contemplative today. 🙂

          Liked by 1 person

        • Thank you. And I am yours. You definitely inspire me and prove that if I just keep going I’ll achieve what I desire. We do have many things in common, that’s for sure. And thank you for the comment on the website. It’s a constantly evolving thing. (in fact, you’ve inspired me there as well, with the evolutions you’ve gone through. I love the latest!).

          Liked by 1 person

        • Thank you for saying that. I work hard on mine too. This branding thing is a work in progress and not always easy to define.


        • You’re welcome, and boy, ain’t that the truth!

          Liked by 1 person

I look forward to your comments.

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