Wednesday, September 9, 2020

Brain Dump: How getting it all out is freeing

Have you noticed lately that you have lots of thoughts and feelings but haven't really had an outlet for them? I usually have a good vent session when things are stressful and talk things out. But we've been encouraged for what seems like the whole year to stay away from everyone and I feel like, for me at least, things tend to build up and until "I'm about to McFreakin' lose it!" 

So last night it hit me. Just write it all down. So I'm not a physician and I'm not a specialist in anything except driving myself crazy. But I do have a buttload of sharpies and paper. So I grabbed a piece of cardstock because I knew it was going to be brutal. And I started writing. Now you might be more fly by the seat of your pants but I like to give myself permission for things so I wrote right in the middle of the page "Brain Dump" and then I went at it. 

And I'll be honest, I found myself censoring myself. So then I yelled wrote really hard with my sharpie "stop censoring me!" So I stopped censoring ME. I wrote lots of things. Things I'd been thinking but didn't tell anybody because you know what? they probably wouldn't come across as nice. But they were in my brain so they were on the paper. Some stuff was probably mean, stupid, ridiculous, hurtful, full of anger and bitterness, sad stuff that I don't say because I'm suppose to be happy all the time. This paper was really covered in sharpie. I didn't care about writing over the other writing because I was letting it all out and that's how it looked in my head anyways; thoughts covered with other thoughts. Things that have been really weighing on me and I wanted to pray about or tell someone about but the words weren't there, they all came pouring out in a massive mess of sharpie. Did it bleed through the page? Yes. But it had been ripping at my heart for months, years even. I honestly couldn't think of anything else I was worried or upset. Then after I had completely messed up that sheet of paper...

I showed my husband the mess of words, told him what it was and then I ripped it to shreds and threw it into the trash. 

Because I realized that in writing all of it down I had confessed what was weighing on me and I didn't want it anymore. It was a huge mess of colors and words and scribbled feelings. And it wasn't really pretty. Seeing it all there, written out was actually revealing. There was more there than I had realized. But I felt that God saw me as I wrote, He heard the words that wouldn't come out as sounds, He knew what was in my heart and mind and that was what mattered. Even if I didn't feel heard by Facebook friends or even real life friends, even if I never yelled it out loud or ranted about it. He knew. So I took the heavy weight off and handed it to Him. And for the first night in months, I went to bed without stress. I slept easier. I woke up the next morning and when stress tried to come in I said "No". 

So my prayer for you, friends, is that whatever is weighing on you that you would hand it over. "Cast all your anxiety on Him, because He cares for you." -1 Peter 5:7

Because, let's be fair, there is a lot of crap hitting the fan. There's a virus and an election and shutdowns and craziness. People have lost jobs and loved ones. People are losing relationships. There's a lot of stress to be found. Lots of bad to be seen. But on the other side of everything is hope and peace. 

So I don't know if you are a visual learner like I am but here's a printable. I highly recommend either printing it on cardstock or putting it on a surface you don't care about. But just don't censor what is in your head. It's okay if it's mean, if it's what you are thinking then write it down. I wouldn't recommend doing it in front of people who might be on the list of stresses as that might cause more stress. It's not for show, it's from you and to God. It's a prayer. But sometimes prayers aren't spoken. 

I'm not saying to focus on the bad. I'm saying to get it out. Everything you are feeling. Because I also think you should do this exercise but by listing all the good things and post it somewhere to remind you of the good. But some of us don't wear our hearts out in the open for all to see. Some hide inside an outer shell and it's suffocating. Break out of it. Because holding it all in might also mean you are keeping good things from coming in. 

Like I said, I'm not an expert. Just a person who wants to live more freely and I hope you will too. 

Here's the printable:

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