RACE VERSUS GRIEF

I have pondered and meditated on the incident of the 25th May re the loss of George Floyd in the USA, and the momentum of the Black Lives Matter movement. My spirit and mind wrestled with the shock horror of another son dying! Emotionally and physically rattled yet again as another black family is left fatherless and widowed and a mother, sisters, brothers and communities are crying out again at such a senseless loss.

I have seen this played out again and again for over 40 years from the penal system to immigration of many western countries. I say today that as a society I declare that all Lives matter in the sight of our Creator and so it is very unfortunate that the Black Lives Matters in the 21st century has to remind the world that the life of the Black man has to be acknowledged as worthy at every level of humanity.

Before I go any further, I must salute the Black race as one that continues to survive and grow stronger in spite of slavery, colonism, imperialism, oppression, police brutality, loss of lives, education’s exclusion of black boys, unemployment disparities to name a few, yet we rise and grow stronger.

We have made significant strides in all levels of society in the Western World. From being President, magnificent Surgeons, Consultants, Doctors, Nurses, Engineers, Journalists, Entrepreneurs, Nurses, Builders, teachers, creatives and Sport professionals too numerous to recount.

We hear in the United Kingdom due to the cruel ravages of the current pandemic of Covid 19 the lives of many black professional and health workers that have worked on the front line have lost their lives. This raises questions of why teams were not equipped with sufficient Personal Protection Apparatus during the treatment of extremely sick patients. So many unanswered questions on Race in this instance too. Why is there a larger number of black people dying from Covid 19 in comparison to other communities?

It is not always about wanting cheap or token handouts from mainstream it’s about acknowledging and treating the black race as equal to every other man or woman created by God.

So, I ask myself how has the Black Race been able to survive this far? I believe it’s due to a possession of strong spiritual gifts as Courage, grit, optimism, self-control, self-discipline and creativity. The physical siege the black man faces in the west can only be countered by the power and strength of God which is Spiritual.Unparallell to any other.

Practically we know that to move forward in restoring the general view that Black Lives Matter the history of Positive contributions black men and women have made throughout history should be celebrated and incorporated into all parts of the Western education system from Primary School to higher education. Black historical dialogues should be entered into on the history that educates communities on the identity and prominence of the man of colour pre slavery, during colonialism and imperialism. 

An education system that incorporates in its curriculum positive Black education on race, being taught as soon as children attend school. Just as we learn of the Normandy invasion so should the triangular slave trade be taught. With this in place hopefully no one of the next generation in England will turn around and say to a black child or man that is born and bred in the West, should return to their country if they do not like it here.

Secondly the black community has made huge strides in developed nations of the world but in the United Kingdom we need to make greater strides. As economic power means political power, a greater voice at the decision makers table. Not just accepting the crumbs at the floor of the masters table so to speak figuratively.

For all those black precious lives loss I say rest in peace. I pray that life’s loss shall not be in vain. For those families bereft and left confused and in tumult turn those emotions positively into practically engineering change in communities in self-perception,

refuting self-prophecy, denigration, disrespect, gaining knowledge, development in education and making greater strides to claim that our children’s world is an oyster, to pursue achievement and success anywhere in the world. Automation has brought the world closer to us and so therefore the greater impact any human story can have like Black Life Matters.

You ask how does this apply to walking out of widowhood. It applies in the sense that race when denigrated and made to feel worthless is like a daily loss of identity and death. You are made to grieve each day if not careful, however a walking out of such effects of damaged perceptions requires searching in ourselves to fight to survive using spiritual qualities as mentioned and turning negatives into positives.

If one is to make a list of all black people that have died pre-Colonialism and post imperialism one would be overwhelmed and give up trying to survive and win.

For those who have experienced any form of loss I pray your loved one’s rest in peace and you are comforted on every side. If you have recently been widowed feel free to share or comment on my Blog. Feedback enriches a writer’s content and resolve.

Signing of now! There is always hope after loss!           

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ALONE TIME

RELAX

We have somehow survived the 11th week of lock down in England and it is gradually being eased. I wonder what your greatest challenges have been and are you coming out of lock down with a different perspective of yourself and future? I do not think we can view life the same as before lock down. I hope it has changed you for the better to a certain level of degree.

 Even perhaps never taking for granted the natural ease we had before lockdown to pop in and out of the supermarket without long queues, or fear of being infected by Covid 19. Or appreciating loved ones we have not been able to see for a long time. Or a quick visit to have a meal out with friends and family. I hope you come out of lockdown with quite a different perspective – appreciating life, health and an insight of why we are made to connect with each other.

I have appreciated the time and have worked on different projects. I believe I have only been able to do this by maximising what I term ‘alone times’, finding personal moments to be alone from the maddening crowd.

In spite of lockdown there are still so many things that still compete for our attention, these distract us from finding (alone time) solitude. Today I have woken up feeling lethargic and not so motivated, perhaps slightly exhausted from the predictability of lockdown. I have been up from 5.30am to do my daily reading of scripture and Prayers, then I went back to sleep. Sometimes I decide to work straight through, as I am best in the morning. I am now at my dining table reading and editing this blog – back in full steam. What am I trying to say? 

Solitude is different to Isolation as when in solitude it’s generally a personal decision to be alone to appreciate peace and quiet. You ask why would one want to be in solitude, after being locked in? It’s a good question to ask, as a choice to be in solitude means you can come out of it when you want, unless you get interrupted by one of the kids?

It is beneficial to get (alone time) solitude, to think, pray, meditate, reflect, write or ponder on a decision, review the present and the future.

In the Bible Jesus in ministry picked several moments to pray alone, away from the disciples (friends) and the crowd. It was his way of gaining spiritual strength to operate in a physical world where he faced and was to face much opposition.

After he had dismissed the crowds, he went up on the mountain by himself to pray. When evening came, he was there alone. He used it has a time also to replenish his spiritual strength and focus. Also, as a time to prepare for the eventualities of his mission on earth. He had just performed the miracle of feeding the crowd of 5000 and healing the sick. Before the feeding of this crowd he was about to withdraw to a desolate place by himself but decided in his compassion to stay and heal and feed the crowd.

From Jesus’s demonstrated need to find a quiet place alone shows the important and benefits of us doing this. As we are mere mortals and live a very stressful and over demanding world. One that is always trying to distract our focus through social media, tv, newspapers, local and national noises, mobile phones to name a few.

How do you find your quiet place or solitude in Covid 19 Lockdown? I hear you say I have no choice now as we are all on Lockdown. Being locked in has been more challenging for some, more so than for others. However, where ever you find yourself you have to make an effort to find your alone time.

This requires self-discipline, creativity and courage. There is an essential need to check in with yourself daily. By writing quietly in a journal at the end of the day on what you did, achieved and could not get done. What you want to achieve the next day.

From a Judeo-Christian perspective, Solitude is good for meditation and reading scripture by yourself. Some decide to do this first thing in the morning as it sets one up for the day. Plans for the day can be made at this time, issues to address during the day and also certain things you decide to stay away that generally impact your emotional wellbeing.

 Many wake up early in the morning between 5am and 6am and have quiet time. It is a peaceful and special time of the day. Some go walking or jogging especially in the summer and some do prayer walks at this time.

The act of praying and meditating on scripture changes the atmosphere around you and it shifts perception of self and enables a deeper clarity of thoughts, this increases to make better judgements on decisions. It gives daily confidence, courage and creative ideas for your work, relationships, home and business.   

TIME

You say how can I start doing this? Consider the following –

1.What time of the day are you at your best? Morning, afternoon or Evening.

2.What time frame do you have to slot in quiet time.

3.What time of the day is less busy?

4.Find a quiet spot at home or in the garden.

5.Download a Bible App from your smartphone to read.

8.Sit quietly now and Write down what comes into your mind. 

9.Use the content you write to set some form of a life Plan

10.Your Plan should have simple and realistic life goals.

11. Each day you spend time alone after meditating on the word, pray, revisit your plans and goals.

12.Adjust and tick appropriately, add or deduct where necessary.

13.Try this for at least a month and you would have formed a Good Habit.

Wishing you a better and more productive life. Signing off now. There is always Hope after loss.     

HOW TO LIMIT THE IMPACT OF YOUR EMOTIONS?

BE HAPPY

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The ability to avoid being impacted by your emotions is to understand firstly that as human beings we are born in God’s image. A human being consists of Spirit, Soul, and Body. The ability to protect your soul enables you to manage what impacts your emotions. The Soul is man’s life. It is man’s real self, his complete self.

A relationship with God enables you to develop a Spirit which guards your Soul. Having such a relationship gives meaning and purpose to our lives on earth. What does it profit a man Jesus asked when he walked the earth, if a man gained the whole world in money, wealth and fame but lost his Soul? The answer is Nothing. Mark 8:36.

The prosperity of your Soul relies 100% on attaching yourself to God. You ask how do I do this? By literarily asking God to forgive you of all things you have done wrong, (by confessing I am sorry for my sins, saying you accept Jesus Christ into your life and you believe he is the lord and saviour of your life.’

The Holy Spirit will have an affinity with your spirit- renewing it and making it more sensitive to things of God.

You ask that simple? Yes, it is. That’s why the Bible refers to having childlike faith. By faith you start on a new road – growth comes by fellowship with others of like minds and reading the Bible to continue to seek understanding of your step of faith.

The stronger your Spirit, the more empowered is your Soul to manage circumstances that impact your emotions.

While physically different things can impact your emotions and the level it affects you varies from one person to another. This depends on how vulnerable in nature you are. Some individuals can continue to thrive in spite of challenges, while some are less resilient. The stronger your Spirit the more able you are to weather storms that impact your emotions.

So how do we avoid being impacted by our emotions? You have to protect your Spirit! A guarded Spirit directed by the action points below will strengthen the way your emotions are impacted. (To name a few)

1.You have to make a conscious effort daily to say to self that you are going to be Happy.

2.Life will always happen or is still happening with its ups and downs. It is how you decide to respond that counts.

3.Maintain a level of emotion insulation is key that is guarding what you watch with your eyes, what you ear with your ears and what you speak out of your mouth.

4.The word states that your eyes are the gateway to your Soul. What you view becomes what you love and keep as important in your Soul, therefore impacting heart and mind. Consequently, impacting how you see and react to things.

5.The word teaches on guarding what you hear. Too much of hearing negative and disturbing news or stories will distort your pure thoughts. This can make you anxious and experience feelings of anticipated doom.

6.What you say is also important. Do not let profanity come out of your mouth. As you speak so it shall be. The Bible states there is life and power on your tongue. Please confess life equals positive things. E.g. I will not die rather than I am going to die. Oh, I will find a job in spite of it all, rather than I will never work! What you confess you become. Speaking negatively around your children brings in negative thoughts and attitudes on them too.

What I’m I trying to say? Select the life you want to live! Select to hear positive news or things around you. Watch only things that encourage life and lift your Spirit, Soul, and body. Constantly hearing and watching positive things will naturally translate into what you speak out of your mouth.

7.Keep and maintain positive people around you.

8.Mentor someone new at learning what you have already learnt.

9.Find people who are more experienced than you to Mentor you and look up to.

May you have the Boldness to share this Timeless Truth with at least one person!

Signing off now. There is always Hope after of loss.    

Find me at businessandmarriagecoaching.co.uk

HOW RELIABLE ARE OUR EMOTIONS?

Let not your Heart be troubled’ John 14:1

With all the effects of Covid 19, loss of loved ones, not being able to connect with others in close proximity, unemployment and the atmosphere of uncertainty our emotions can start to waver especially if we have other issues that make us more vulnerable. Extreme grief due to the loss of a Spouse, challenging health issues, not to mention so many more make us emotionally raw.

The key at this time is finding strength and support to manage our emotions. You say what does this mean? I define this as trying to extract from your circumstances what is going well and be grateful instantly for this. Giving Thanks always for all things is the key to a cheerful and light heart. It makes you optimistic and hopeful in spite of what is happening now.

Thanks, can be expressed in words, poetry, song, dance – please find the best expression that suits you. When we do our challenges become less magnified. For those of us still grieving or have gone through grief we go through waves of different feelings – one moment it is a wave that tries to overwhelm and another time it might be one that incapacitates.

What we do know is that our emotions constantly change and respond in different ways to given situations due to a fluctuation of emotions. As emotions fluctuate and can change, this suggests they can be quite subjective and not the best judge of how we might really be responding to situations around us.

As they are unpredictable, we have to understand to learn how to let each given wave of emotion ride and settle, before responding to or making decisions on other events around us.

So far emotions can be unpredictable and can prevent us from operating objectively in given situations. So, they can be deceptive, not in how you are feeling in your loss, but in how you perceive other events around you.

Therefore, our emotions when impacted cloud or veil our rational. So, it is in times of deep emotional challenge that it is important to talk and share with others on how you are feeling so as to get the right help and support.

 Emotions make us or push us to do the most horrendous things especially when your thoughts become internalised and not voiced out to give less life to them. One specific emotion e.g. pain of loss can bring feelings of fear into your life. As loss makes the future uncertain due to the sudden change of life. It is important to try to understand these feelings and that allows us to manage them and not allow how thoughts to lose control.

 Fear can make us take the most irrational decisions e.g. small tasks can become mammoth ones, small goals become impossible to achieve or making the effort to talk to just one new person can make you freeze and lose bottle.

Emotional tumult can distract us from what the real issues are e.g. with all the hidden emotions Covid 19 has brought to nations. Many are unconsciously afraid of where the next pay packet is coming from, businesses being dissolved – no customers, shops being restricted from opening due to legislature pertaining to Covid 19 prevention.

How do we manage our emotions at this time of lockdown? I can only prescribe for you a timeless principle that works for me which is reading my Bible. You can easily download a free copy from App store on your mobile phone or tablet, listen to it audibly. If you have never picked one up this might be your opportunity to do so.

Start reading the Psalms written by David, they are like songs that naturally sooth your soul, perhaps gradually with time you will gain courage to read some of the amazing events and testimonies that happened when Christ walked the earth 2000 years ago.

The word of God has the power to transform your life from the inside out, all you need is faith as small as a mustard seed.

Secondly utilise the support you have around – friends, acquaintances, neighbours and colleagues.

Thirdly perhaps try to explore items in your home or office that are not used, sell on line to make money. Take a closer look at your financial outgoings and see where you can reduce or get services cheaper. The less financial pressure you are in at this time will ease the burden on your emotions.  

Perhaps get a close friend to do the same so you can both motivate each other. If you have children get them to scout for items they do not use. Just start with a few tangible items so not to get overwhelmed – google suitable sites that allow you to do this. Watch out for ones that allow you to display items for 1p etc.

I have just started this weekly series on managing your emotions. Look out for more.

This time shall past. There is always Hope after Loss. Signing off now.  

ISOLATION EQUALS OPPORTUNITY


The Covid 19 with all it’s variants shall not steal your health, focus, vision nor life’s work.

Self isolation for me and many can be quite scary as it denotes being by your self and being alone.In a society that can be quite lonely at times,especially living in a cosmopolitan city, you can easily wonder what you are going to do with all the time you have.

It’s the 7th week of Lockdown in the United Kingdom,if you are reading this,then you have endured so far.I wonder what your days have been like?Have you created something out of your natural gifts and talent?

Have you started writing a diary that perhaps might become a book? Or are you baking more of those Vegan cakes to order on a larger scale.It’s amazing what our minds can produce when in solitude.Do sever every moment.

I know we have to prevent the spread of the virus and maintain 2 metre social distance yet the word self isolation conjures for me the period l lost my husband.

While l was off work,everyone was away at work, every where was quiet,and l was by myself. Yet l could think much clearly in the midst of the isolation. l was physically conscious of being alone however l could picture what l would like my future to look like.

So to avoid the hidden fear of that period of Grief l have decided to maximise the time l have now off work, to continue writing and explore other ways of making streams of income,on line.The emphasis is to educate and up-skill.

If ever a time, the Pandemic has opened my mind to the need to know how to work more effectively on line, than any other season. I can see much clearly the fruits of working from home and working more independently

Being physically present at home enables me to be with my children,manage my own time,keep safe from the virus and also connect with people via Social media.However there is nothing as valuable as connecting directly in a room or real space with others.Social media is the only alternative right now,do learn how to use it.

So every adversity has a silver lining. So l’m saying if you have stopped work or you are working from home, any free time you have is an opportunity to do things you have been putting off for so many years.Perhaps the half written book,the plan to work independently, maximise your creativity, learn a new skill, or spend more time finding what your unique gift is.


Please make use of the time,as the days are short.Appreciate the time you get to be with your family.For some of you there is no reason to run off now to work or school/university.
It is a time perhaps to deal with underlying issues we avoid at home by immersing ourselves in so called work.E.g. Hidden personal grievances,hurts,forgiveness issues etc.

Self isolation raises the issue of Mental Health and how it could impact you.Not speaking for days to anyone can be soul destroying as it eats away at your confidence.

The more we talk or engage with others the more we grow our creative skills.I guess you must know now, that the isolation unit in most institutions of correction in the world, are the most punishing and demeaning for any individual.

So Plan also on how to take care of your Mental Health during this time.Ponder on these tips

  1. Set yourself a daily routine
  2. Drink and eat healthily.
  3. Do some form of daily exercise.
  4. Connect to at least one individual daily verbally or virtually by Social Media
  5. Not communicating with anyone but just your TV box is not good for your mind.Your mind needs to be stimulated by connecting to another human being.
  6. Go for a walk, this is allowed – the outdoor is especially good for your Mental Health.
  7. Open the windows and ventilate your home daily.
  8. Finish reading that book you have been struggling with or pick up one of the various recipe books you have and make a new meal for your family?
  9. Reach out by phone etc to those you know are living on their own or are vulnerable.
  10. Pray daily and confess positive affirmations to your self.
  11. *If you are concerned about your business or job find out on line, through your local authority what you are financially entitled to.*

Remember it is never over until the Lord says it’s over!! Exercise wisdom at all times in keeping well and staying safe.

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