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Thursday, December 11, 2003

Getting the Holiday Blues?

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It's that time of year again. People seem to be more cheerful, helpful, and caring. What a magical experience when so many of us radiate warmth and harmony... And amongst the celebrations, there are invariably some individuals who will go through rough moments. Maybe we will go through our own rough moments. How will I get through my challenges? Each of us has different ways of getting through our difficulties. I've found that actions which make lasting change, happen, when we first take the time to distinguish the challenge.

Danish Ahmed Are you stressed?

Perhaps you're the type of person who finds yourself very busy in this season, and sometimes in a very good way. Your business may pull in more customers during this time, you may be going to many more social events, and you may be trying to host a bunch of relatives visiting from out of town, too. All this can get very hectic!

One of the natural ways to alleviate stress is to do relaxing things like taking a walk or watching a movie. Although these activities are sometimes helpful, our minds may continue to "think" -- we continue talking to ourselves about our stresses when we're walking, or we tend to find things in the movie that remind us of our stresses. In essence, we continue to "stress ourselves out", trying to relax.

We may discover that doing activities which force our bodies to be active, allow our minds to rest, and NOT think at all. For example, exercise, sports, theatrical acting, and playing a musical instrument are all good activities that allow us to be in the moment. These activities allow us to focus on the task at hand, and consequently, put our stresses to "sleep." These activities also allow our subconscious minds to tackle some of the problems we are facing, and to come up with solutions without any of our conscious effort. What power!

Danish Ahmed Are you depressed?

For some people, the holidays can become a reminder of a lost friend or a distant family member. Maybe it doesn't feel right to be "cheery" when we see so much harm, cruelty, and injustice in the world. Perhaps, as we start to reflect on our past year, we feel the pain of disappointments and see the shadows of unfulfilled dreams.

The holidays can be a very emotional time for people, having associated deep or unconscious memories of early childhood. Using logic to change our momentary thinking may not work.

Julia Butterfly Hill I strongly recommend a book called "Hope & Heroes: Portraits of Integrity & Inspiration." It's all about people who have overcome great adversities and have made our world a better place. Some people we may recognize, like Nelson Mandela and Arun Gandhi (the grandson of Mahatma Gandhi). Some people are amazing activists who we may not recognize, like Julia Butterfly Hill. Julia spent over two years living in a tree -- literally -- as a protest to clear-cut logging. From a radio-powered phone, Julia spoke to the media and gave talks at various conferences!

These stories are fascinating, unique, and emotional. They have inspired me, having me realize that those who help transform our world aren't necessarily well known people. In fact, there are a vast number of people, groups, and communities out there that are literally transforming our consciousness and creating a higher level of evolution. Learn more about Hope & Heroes at

Danish Ahmed Are you bored?

This will relate to the younger readers of this e-zine. Or, if you're a parent, perhaps you've noticed your child has more time on their hands than they know what to do with. There's no school, the weather and people's unusual schedules may make it tough to visit friends, and T.V. just has all the same Christmas specials from last year!

There are times when I'm bored out of my mind, so I know what it's like. Some would say, "Oh I can think of LOTS of things you can do..." That's not the point. Being bored isn't about not having anything to do. Being bored is not being able to find satisfaction in doing anything. We can be doing something, and still have a feeling of boredom.

I find the best remedy for boredom is to employ a sense of contribution. Put your thoughts and actions into helping other people and giving. Is there something a family member needs help with that you could now assist them with? How about volunteering for a charity or cause that you believe in? It doesn't have to be anything structured -- what about going to your local park and clearing away litter?

When we put our focus on other people, the boredom goes away automatically. It's impossible to feel unfulfilled when we're helping somebody else.

How are you?

If you feel stuck and unable to change, stop and ask yourself "What am I feeling -- really?" Uncovering your feelings and getting to the core of your being, is what helps you to transcend yourself into a happier, healthier, person.

From everyone at Ordinary Words, have a warm and joyous holiday celebration!


[)anish /|hmed
have fun creating your life

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