My Journey from Discovery to Acceptance to Change
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Hope Through Authenticity

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Mollified with Music

Shoutee/Shouter

Have you noticed that when you are shouting at someone, they stop listening?  They close down?  If you have children, you can actually see their eyes glaze over. 

Now take a second and think about your reaction when someone yells at you.  Do you really get anything out of the interaction other than increased animosity?  The person who is yelling does have something to tell you – something worthwhile or their emotions wouldn’t run so hot.  

What’s My Point?

Sometimes we let our emotions SHOUT at us.  The emotion becomes a clanging beast pounding your head, your heart.  When that happens, we no longer hear what the emotion is trying to say.  If we can calm the beast, then we can get the message.  Remember though we want to calm, NOT ignore.  We never want to shove emotions away.  Our emotions have a purpose but we can’t find their message when they are shouting down the door.

Here’s One Way to Calm Down (and it’s fun)

Ingredients:

  • Internet access
  • the lyrics to a favorite song – a song with lyrics you really like
  • (a recommendation:  don’t choose an inspirational or spiritual song – I’ve found that while they are wonderful, they can also open a door to the inner critic)

What To Do:

Read the lyrics carefully.  Ask yourself these questions:

  1. What story is the writer trying to tell?
  2. Can you feel that the story might be autobiographical?
  3. What emotion do you think the writer felt when writing?  Are the emotions soft or loud? 
  4. What emotion do you feel when reading or listening to this work of art?  Do you think that’s what the author wanted you to feel? 
  5. Does the music (as opposed to the lyrics) add to the emotion of the song?  Does the music match the emotion or conflict with it?
  6. Why did you choose this song?  What about the lyrics speak to you?
  7. If you have a chance, see if the video supports your analysis.  (I’ve found that the video doesn’t often reflect what I think the writer was trying to portray.)

Assessment:

  • Are you calmer? 
  • Did you enjoy this? 
  • Do you think the author’s emotions were calmed writing these lyrics?
  • Can you now identify what your too loud emotion is and what it may be trying to say?
  • What you I like about this song? 

My Personal Example:

I used Chris Stapleton’s newest song, "Either Way" because I found it very powerful the first time I heard it.  Here are the lyrics:

[Verse 1]
We pass in the hall on our way to separate rooms
The only time we ever talk is when the monthly bills are due
We go to work, we go to church
We fake the perfect life
I'm past the point of giving damns
All my tears are cried

[Chorus]
We can just go on like this
Say the word, we'll call it quits
Baby, you can go or you can stay
But I won't love you either way

[Verse 2]
It's been so long since I've felt
Anything inside these walls
You can't help, you can't hurt
When you don't feel at all
I used to cry and stay up nights
And wonder what went wrong
It's been hard
But hearts can only do that for so long

[Chorus]
We can just go on like this
Say the word, we'll call it quits
Baby, you can go or you can stay
I won't love you either way

  • I feel anger.  I feel anguish.  I feel resignation.
  • Can you feel the emotions “she” must feel when she hears this song? 
  • Did you notice the line:  “we go to church, we fake the perfect life”?  That resonates with me a bit too much.
  • If you get a chance, listen to this song – I think the voice and the music match his tone/message perfectly.  Very powerful and sad song. 

This took me all of five minutes but I’m calmer.  I can hear myself now instead of all that internal clatter.  Five minutes well spent! 

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  • Meet June

    June with Purple Hair

    In April 2012 I had a mental breakdown. The real thing. I have about 36 hours that I don’t remember....

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