It’s a fact! No one feels good in the exact same way. You can read all the advice you like from other people but when it comes down to it, yours is the only opinion that matters.
You didn’t come with a self-care manual. But you need one! Yet how many of us are acutely aware of what we really need when we’re feeling low or times are tough? That’s why the only real option is listening to your own needs and creating your own.
Your emotions might seem overwhelming and unmanageable in the moment but there really isn’t anything that you can’t handle. Running away only prolongs the problem. So instead of running away, why not learn how to manage them instead?
That’s not to say handling them will be comfortable. Many times it isn’t–and that’s really where self-care comes into play.
You have to walk the fine line between running away and wallowing. You have to be confronting-ly honest with what’s really going on inside of you (and not get caught up in how it looks on the outside). You might think you’re honest with yourself all the time! But it’s amazing how often we lie to ourselves and justify things that are not in our highest good.
But living without our alignment and authenticity always creates problems in the end.
(Sometimes ending with the situation that I like to call The Cosmic 2×4: a giant kick out of your comfort zone that ultimately puts you back in alignment.)
But you can create your own medicine: soul medicine to be specific. You have everything you need to heal yourself, even if you’re completely unaware of it at the moment.
So with all of that in mind, today I’m sharing some journalling questions that are designed to help you come up with your own unique version of soul medicine.
5 Questions To Create Your Own Soul Medicine
Soul Medicine Journaling Question #1:
Generally speaking, which situations stress you out?
Do you get overheated at work or with your partner? What kinds of situations set you off? Maybe you’re not good at receiving criticism in general or maybe you find yourself judging others and trying to tell them what to do. Think about your major blowups or breakdown moments. When you look beyond the surface, these events have a lot to teach us about ourselves.
Soul Medicine Journaling Question #2:
What emotions make you feel the most overwhelmed?
In general, which emotions are the ones you’re the most afraid of? For me, that’s anger in general. (Mostly because feeling anger inexplicably makes me want to cry! How embarrassing.) But knowing that I’m afraid to feel (and express anger) means that I can watch out for when that happens. It takes work to convince my subconscious mind that this is an emotion that I’m allowed to both experience and express. But running away from it or trying to suppress it has resulted in some bad situations for me in the past. Simple awareness is the first step in allowing me to avoid those same situations in the future.
Soul Medicine Journaling Question #3:
What where some times in your life where you ran away from your problems or dealt with them in unhealthy ways?
We’ve all done this so no shame here please! Personally, I’m specifically thinking of my mid-twenties self who after breaking up with my long-term boyfriend decided to spend most of the next two months in a bar. (!!!)
At the time I just thought I was making new friends and keeping busy. And I was keeping busy–keeping busy pushing all the pain and hurt I really felt underneath a firm layer of alcohol! Not so healthy obviously. I’m obviously older and wiser now but it’s still useful to look back at those times and see them for what they were. So I highly suggest looking at your own past for similar incidents. What times were you actually running away from something and why? How did the way you “dealt” with things work (or more likely) not work out for you?
Soul Medicine Journaling Question #4:
What are your buffering behaviors?
There are some buffering behaviors that are easy to identify: over-drinking, taking drugs, gambling, sex addiction etc. However, true buffering (ie. running away from our emotions) can also come up in some not-so-easy-to-see forms. This could be TV, video game or even Facebook addiction. It could be simply spending more time at the bar than you do the gym. It could even be booking a big vacation at a tenuous point in your personal or professional life. Be honest with yourself as you examine your behaviors. What could be taking up too much of your time and energy (and ultimately getting in the way of your dreams)?
Soul Medicine Journaling Question #5:
What are some things that make you feel good?
Now that you’ve developed a better understanding of your “negative” side, it’s time to take a look at the possible remedies. There are no magic cure-all’s–and if there were we’d rob ourselves of the important lessons that accompanied our experiences ( -style). But you don’t have to wallow in your pain either.
We all have things that we respond to positively, whether that’s watching stand-up on Netflix or going for a walk by the ocean. So even though you probably have a good idea already about what things feel good to you, please consciously write them down and make a list. What’s on your feel good list? What can you come back to in order to recharge and rejuvenate yourself?
Sometimes the answers to this aren’t as obvious as we initially assume! It’s common to realize that you actually don’t incorporate a lot of these activities into your normal routine (and if you make that discovery it’s then of course, time to change all of that!
So tell me: what are your unique triggers and patterns? And what helps you to feel better and work through tough emotions (in a healthy way)?
We all live different lives and have different strengths and weaknesses. Our happiness blueprint is uniquely our own. Becoming aware of where you need support and the ways in which you best receive support is key to living your best life. So please take your time with this and come up with your unique recipe for how to take care of you!
Good luck with this & please come back to share your findings!