There is a complete difference between merely existing and really savoring this life. You can live a restricted life—completely confined behind the shells of routine and doing all things as a mere means to an end. Or you can have an open heart…a spirit gaping open before the Lord, longing to learn, to grow, and ultimately to enjoy.
“Man’s chief end is to glorify God and enjoy him forever.” —Westminster Catechism Project
Think of it. How many times has your mind wandered off in a day-dream about a spontaneous, carefree life, and yet it remained only a fantasy? If only you had possessed the same sponk and sense of wonder as you had when you were a kid! As intangible as it seems you can still give your soul the same healthy gratification a mother seeks to give her babe, if only you tend to your soul. You deserve to enjoy. You deserve to find carefree moments scattered sporadically between the moments of hustle and pressing demands. I want to talk to you about self-care. Self-care is a total benefit to your overall mental health and wellness.
- Release Guilt: The first step to take in this process is to release all guilt. If you first begin by seeing yourself as innocent as a child you won’t struggle to see yourself as deserving of simple enjoyment and self-care.
- Be Present: It’s so natural to be trapped in the cycle of thinking about problems and tasks that need to be done next. After all, we want to be responsible right? Yes, but we aren’t just living to get things done. We are living to breath…and find moments worth remembering forever. We are actively looking for beauty in the world around us and listening for the ways that God wants to speak to us. Slow down. Let that thing that needs to get done so badly sit on the shelf for now. You deserve to be present.
- Laugh: Giggling is so therapeutic to me. I love to feel the thunder of laughter erupting from deep down in my soul. The freedom, and release I feel is like having wings, every time I do it. It’s such a lightness and a medicine. It’s not immature. It’s not wrong. Laugh a little. Laugh a lot, and experience some healing from whatever it is that’s burdening your soul. You deserve to laugh!
- Rest: Find something that ministers deeply to you and do it regularly. For me that means having a daily cup of tea or coffee and spending time with Jesus. No, I do not only come to him for a lesson. I come to be enveloped by his presence and to feel his mercy. Nothing is more restful. I also like movies with deep and moving messages. These things give me so much rest! Not to mention a made bed. For you it might be drawing or taking a stroll through the park. Find frequent moments to rest. You will immediately feel ten times less miserable!
5. Keep a Journal: Journals get a such a one-sided reputation. They are known for harboring the secrets and frustrations of the writer. I want you to Journal to remember and hold onto everything that means something to you! Journal to enhance your life. That doesn’t mean you can’t write just to vent from time to time, but I want you to Journal to feed and build your soul. This will make a difference.
6. Insert your own: Here is the last tip. I want you to insert your own. My personal and final tip to myself is to cry. Crying is something I do not make room for in my life, except for those rare God-moments when the floodgates of my soul are ajar and I’m released from whatever I was holding onto deep inside. What will you commit to doing for yourself more often?
Inspiration for this post:
I decided to write this post because I suffer from severe depression, and have taken it upon myself to water my heart a little more and find ways to intentionally enjoy life. I think the importance of enjoyment and soul nourishment are entirely underrated, and as Christians has skewed our concept of God’s character. He is the most joyful being there is , and in Him we do not have to be depressed.
Do not be deceived in thinking I have mastered this all. These were tips I wrote for myself as well as for you. We are doing this together.
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