Journey to Being Present for Widows and Divorcees

In the January 2008 article, I wrote about becoming whole and what that can mean for you. In this article you will receive some of the tools needed to achieve your goal of wholeness. Being whole is really about living your life in balance. It is also about living your life in a state of “being” versus “doing.”

When working on becoming whole, taking baby steps allows you to avoid feeling overwhelmed. It is also good to appreciate your success and failures along the way. You don’t want to beat yourself up and run the risk of quitting. Babies fall down over and over again before they master walking.

The first step is to pay attention to what is in front of you – what is happening at this very moment in time. This lets you not only become familiar with your true emotions, but it also helps you to experience the present moment as it is. So many people live their lives thinking about what they must get done or what they didn’t do. They also think about what happened to them or what might happen. Such thoughts are endless. The fact is, doing all this thinking takes you away from “now.” I have a theory that accidents often happen because the person causing the accident isn’t really present. They are miles away in thought.

How many times have you gone on vacation and not been able to remember the small details of the trip? You looked at the photos of the trip when you got home and were surprised at what you saw. Maybe you didn’t remember the sun was setting or a flock of geese were flying over, and yet the photo shows this to be the case. You might have remembered these small details if you had been present.

Another reason for staying present is the issue of emotion. Emotions are the gauge we have to tell us how we are doing. It is also how your soul lets you know whether you are on track with your life, whether you are following your souls or God’s highest wish for you. If you are not living in the moment, you can miss these clues. This leads to the second step to becoming whole.

You must start paying attention to your emotions. As I stated above, they are your barometer of how you are doing at any given point in time. It is hard sometimes to feel certain emotions, but you must feel them to know what needs to be worked on. An example is the emotion of anger. If you are not willing to feel it, it will only come out in other ways. You might become passive aggressive with your boss or a friend. Maybe you will withdraw and get depressed. You may not be aware of your behavior, but the bottom line is that the emotion that started it all is anger.

So being in the moment allows you to feel the emotion and decide what, if anything, you want to do about it. If you are off balance, your emotions will let you know. If you feel off in some way and just can’t put your finger on what it is, let your emotions be your guide. If the emotion is joy, you’ll naturally want to keep doing whatever caused that emotion. If it is fear or anger, you may want to explore it with a friend or counselor.

The third step in becoming whole is to take action. This is vital. You must not only listen to your emotions, but you must take action in dealing with them. The action could be as simple as taking a walk in nature while reflecting on your feelings. It could be talking to a therapist or coach. It could be that writing your feelings in a journal is what you need to do. When you are journaling, it is a good idea to be very honest. After all, your journaling is supposed to help you. Also, make sure you not only write down the emotion and why it showed up, but also write down your action plan for dealing with it.

The goal is to effect change in your life. You want to live the life you dream of and one that is true to who you really are. To get this change you must start living your life in the present moment and take a hard look at where you are in this moment, including how you got here. Next, use your emotions as your measure of how well you are doing. Finally, take action. Bit by bit, you will start to notice changes in who you are and how you relate to the world and yourself. You are at a crossroad in your life: which way are you going to go? Will you take the road named “status quo,” or will it be” journey to being?”