How to Stop Feeling So Terrible All the Time
Have you ever been beaten down in this life? Are there things that have happened that have affected you negatively that you just can't let go of? Do you want to be rid of those things, those bad feelings forever? Here's how.
This is a Christian process. I'm not saying that if you aren't a Christian that it won't work, God can and will show Himself to anyone because He loves us all, but you do have to believe that He is real, because He is. Accepting Jesus and acknowledging Him as your Savior is an important thing to do though and doing so will greatly benefit your life if you live it out.
Now, this process isn't necessarily an easy one or a fun one, but it is oh so helpful. Prayer doesn't have to be a process and it definitely shouldn't be one all the time. Prayer is just a conversation between you and God. Simple as that. You can talk to Him just as you'd talk to a best friend. You can ask Him for things the same way that you would ask someone for a cookie. You can also ask him to take things just as easily.
Fact Based Emotions and The Process
Fact Based Emotions generally include Sadness, Disappointment, Guilt, Anger, Resentment and Grief. These emotions occur when something, usually uncontrollable by you, happens. There is nothing you could have done to change it and it is a fact that you feel this way directly because of the real life situation. Probably the only emotion that comes from something you could have controlled would be guilt, but that is still based on a real life situation and is still a fact based emotion.
Make a list of things that have happened or been done to you that cause you to feel bad. You don't have to write it down, but sitting down and writing through this process makes it a lot more potent.
Choose the memory that is the most painful in this moment and make a detailed list of everything that makes you feel badly.
- For Sadness, Anger, Resentment and Disappointment make the detailed list about what makes you feel that way
- For Guilt make a detailed list of the sins you committed and the things that you really did wrong.
- For Grief and Loss make a detailed list of the things that you miss about the person or thing that you have lost.
Pray through your list telling God everything that you are feeling, choose to give it to Him and ask Him to carry it in Jesus name. Literally just go through your list, give each thing to God and then just let go.
Ask God if there is anything about this situation that He wants you to know. Then listen in a quiet place and write down any thought, images or feelings that you have from that time of quiet and ask God if that are from Him. Write down ANYTHING that comes to mind, even if it seems silly or unrelated at first, just do it.
Go back through your list and try to stir back up the negative emotions you were just feeling. Cross them out as you go if they are fully gone and circle them if they remain. If there are some that remain, continue to pray through them until they are gone. This does not have to be done all in one sitting, so don't fret about that.
- Share what God did and what you heard from Him with a close friend.
Belief Based Emotions
If you pray through a list about a specific thing that hurts and the emotion does not leave, it is most likely attached to a belief about yourself or someone else that is rooted in a lie meaning that you are feeling a belief based emotion. You can go through the same process as the fact based emotions, but there are additional steps to dealing with belief based emotions that help battle the lies.
Emotions that are belief based include Loneliness, False Shame, Defilement, Fear, Hurt, Helplessness, Hopelessness and Confusion. These emotions are usually rooted in lies that we believe about ourselves or others. These emotions come from Satan. He uses them to trick us into believing things that will pull us farther from God.
The first step in dealing with these emotions is to determine which emotion, or which combination of emotions you are feeling. Below is a list with examples to help you.
"I'm all alone, no one cares about me, I'm abandoned, not even God cares about me, I will always be alone, no one understands me, God has forsaken me, there is no one to protect me, they will never come back for me."
"I feel stupid, it was my fault, I should have done something to stop it, I participated in it, I enjoyed it, I deserved it, it happened because of my appearance, I should have resisted, I should have told someone, I am bad, dirty and shameful."
"I'm dirty and defiled because of what happened to me, everyone can tell that I'm dirty, I'll never be clean again, no one will ever be able to love me after what I've done, my body is dirty, I will never be happy, even God could not want me or listen to me after what I've done."
"I'm going to die, I'm trapped, he is going to come back and hurt me again, something terrible is going to happen to me, I'm going to be hurt, if I tell anyone they will come back and hurt me again, it will destroy my family if I tell anyone, doom and despair are coming to me."
"I am unimportant,I am not wanted, loved or valued, my feelings are not important, I am worthless, no one cares for me, I cannot measure up no matter how hard I try, I am unacceptable, I cannot please others because ___________, I was a burden, I am in the way, I am not liked, I am not appreciated, I am not affirmed or validated."
"I'm weak, I'm overwhelmed, I'm helpless against him, I cannot do anything to resist him, I'm too small to do anything about it, I'm going to die, everything is out of control, even God cannot help me, there is no way out."
"There is no hope for me, it's never going to get better, there is no way out, not even God can help me, nothing good can ever come from this, I have no reason to live."
I don't know how I feel, it's all so confusing, I didn't know what to think, I was shocked and stunned, it doesn't make any sense, I don't know what is happening."
Once you have identified your emotions, ask yourself how this makes you feel about yourself, then ask God for His Truth about that feeling. Continue to pray through the process listed above in the Fact Based Emotions section.
If you still struggle ask God to take you to the very fist time you felt this way about yourself or others and then identify the thought you had at that moment that built into the feeling you have today. Ask God for His Truth about that thought. Continue the process just as for the fact based emotions while adding in this extra step for your feelings that are rooted in lies.
There is no point in knowing this if you are not going to do it, and there's no point in doing it if you are not going to follow through on it. Please begin praying this way about how you feel. If you come up against a wall or barrier and can't get through something find a mentor who could help you walk through this process. You don't have to deal with this alone. You can also go to the Trading Pain for Peace website to find more information about the freedom God wants for you.
Trading Pain for Peace
In this life, there is pain, but there is also freedom from pain and that freedom comes from Jesus Christ. God loves you and He wants to carry your burdens for you. Let Him love you by doing so. It's hard, but you just have to get it out and let it go.
All this information is an adaption from Trading Pain for Peace by Jim Gardner. You can visit the website to find testimonials and other information at <http://www.tradingpain.com/#/trading-pain-for-peace>.
I would also like to note that this list of emotions in Belief Based Emotions is adapted from Beyond Tolerable Recovery by Ed Smith.