It is funny how something like recreational paddle boarding can hammer home some of the very lessons that help to build a resilience; the very resilience that helps to keep me alive.
Today I found myself on a stand up paddle board doing my best, whilst paddling into a wind that was almost sending me backwards.
It was in this time that I was given a gentle reminder, to stay present, to focus at the task at hand. Everything in my head in that moment, was telling me to head back to shore, the lake is too long, how on earth will you ever get to the other end..
It is in my personal moments of depression, vivid thoughts of suicide & darkness, that I can call on the same very tools as I used today; you see, today when I was paddling into that wind I was looking so far down to the other end of the lake, it seemed like an eternity. Add on top the head wind, the questions of why, how, and when I would get through this current tough time.
Many would think ‘what on earth has tough times in suicidal ideation and paddle boarding into a head wind got to do with each other’ - and for the most part many people would be right, they have nothing to do with each other, but it is the same tips I am about to share, that have everything to do with getting out of both situations.
On the paddle board today, I gave myself the very advice I’ve used in many life and death situations; STAY PRESENT & FOCUS ON NOW.
I may have been paddling into a head wind, but I was making progress, slowly, but it was still progress.
In tough situations we often look at ‘how can I get to the end’ when really, all we should be thinking is, just build on what we have right now.
In order to count to 100, I first have to count to 1 & then 2 & then 3 & 4 & 5 etc.. don’t look at what’s long and beyond, for that paints a dark picture and feeds the demons of doubt.
Today, the demons of doubt were loud and clear, when paddling into that wind, just like the times we are in mental anguish, the doubt is there and it focuses on telling you what you can not do and tries to convince you everything you are not - don’t listen, stay present & you got this..
Just by staying present in those tough times, helps to build your resilience, helps you to fight back against #TheEnemyWithin.
Today, realistically, I wasn’t having a tough time in having suicidal thoughts, but I used the very same tips and advice as if I were - STAY PRESENT & FOCUS ON NOW.
In your moments of darkness, it is the most simple, yet most effective things you can do - STAY PRESENT & FOCUS ON NOW, BUILD ON YOUR SITUATION, 1% AT A TIME