- Mental Health
Coping Skills for the Depressed and Anxious, Part Three. Excite the Senses.
Excite the Senses
I had awaken her from a deep sleep. It was four in the morning.
"My head is bleeding and I think I have a concussion. I probably should not be driving. Can you help me?"
"I ran into a bird feeder."
The next time I saw my kids and ex-wife, I had a band aid on my head.
"That's a good look for you."
Somehow, my ex just isn't as sympathetic as she used to be. My kids think it is hilarious. It is really kind of painful.
The fact is that I run into a lot of things. Poles, doors, mailboxes, fences. I seem to have developed the habit of watching out for the crap on the ground rather than noticing the flowers in the pot hanging from the tree.
Today is a gorgeous day here in Central Indiana. I had planned to sit at my computer and get a lot of work done. My senses called me elsewhere. Instead, this morning, I took my dog, Lucky to the park. We stood on the bridge looking over the creek that becomes a rushing river after a rain like we had yesterday. I listened to the water running over the rocks and the birds singing. I watched the path of the river and the green surrounding it. I reveled in the sunshine on my face and shoulders.
Whether by God or by evolution (or God through evolution) It is amazing the senses we have been priviledged to possess. How much pain sight, smell and touch have bestowed upon me, but how much surprise and dekight, too.
I have learned over the past few years to divest myself of reminders of past anguish. I am also learning to decorate my life with the sensual pleasures of the world.
I remember laying in my bed at night, when I was young, with my window open and hearing the sound of far off trains going through town. I love the sounds of small airplanes, woodpeckers, basketballs bouncing, the PA system at a high school football game and the crunch of the first car driving through a fresh snow.
My favorite flower is carnation. Vanilla candles and banana bread baking bring calm.Who cannot love the smell of turkey roasting on Thanksgiving morning? Thanksgiving was my favorite as a kid because it seemed like that was the holiday most relatives would visit.
There are gardeners among us who thrill at the feel of fresh soil on their hands. A breeze on a warm spring night can bring enjoyment.
My plea to you is to:
Be still and let yourself know the wonders.
In the grass, the leaves, your carpet or your bed with the window open.
On the bridges, in the fields and at the ballgame.
And don't forget to look up.
In lifting the eyes we lift our souls.
It is amazing how much calm and excitement our senses can bring.