Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Turning Tragedy into something positive. Going beyond positive thinking.

Thinking positive alone is not enough. People face difficult life situations and they are faced with negative unwanted emotions. Go to your mailbox and it says IRS. How many people think great and get excited? You are on vacation and your boss leaves a message on your cell phone saying call right away. Do you think that people get a flow of positive emotions over that? No way. It does not happen.

I am going to take on the most difficult situation here first. Death of a loved one it is likely the biggest negative you will ever face. I am here to offer you a suggestion to help you. I lost a relative to suicide at a very young age and unexpected time that got involved with meth unexpectedly. I don’t think it makes me an expert counselor for people dealing with something terrible but I do understand what I didn’t want.

I didn’t want people trying to give me advice that was basically telling me to remain positive. Trust me that is not enough during that time. So if I told you I had a solution for your pain would you believe me? If I said I had a step-by-step solution would you do it? Let's see.

Here is what I found to work. I started taking the frustration, anger, and resentment and directed it into something positive. I started writing letters of appreciation to as many people as I could. I wrote to friends, family, business associates and people that I respected and admired. Guess what happened? I started to feel better. Writing is an antidote for pain and at the same time I found out that not many people in the world get letters like that. Simple one page letters telling them 5 to 10 positive things about them and how you value their relationship. You don’t even have to know the people you can send these to authors of books you have read, disc jockeys that play songs that uplift you, people that write articles that inspire you or people that are just nice to you and offer a good service to you like your postman.

I just gave you 5,000 dollars worth of free therapy there. If you go through a challenge write letters like this. Send me copies of 5 letters you write with your name and address and phone number and I will send you a free gift with no strings attached. Knowing this information is great. Applying this information is life changing.

20 Comments:

Blogger HillCountryGal said...

GREAT post.
Nice to meet you, btw. You have a wonderful blog here.
Stop by and visit anytime. I have another blog I call the place where the lunatics gather.
http://www.hillthis.blogspot.com/

4:29 PM  
Blogger Malinda777 said...

Nice post. Writing is good therapy. Any counselor worth their weight will tell anyone to keep a journal. Writing letters of appreciation is therapy for both parties.

Keep up the positive work. Thanks for stopping by my blog.

7:05 PM  
Blogger Enemy of the Republic said...

Amen to you.

5:19 AM  
Blogger niCk (Mem Beth) said...

Excellent. Good reason for a blog. Positive thinking is great therapy.

5:55 AM  
Blogger HillCountryGal said...

I came back to read your post again. Simply BEAUTIFUL.

7:20 AM  
Blogger bettina said...

Thanks Tom,I give the advice of writing thank you letters for people who have been positive influences in our lives to my friends who are facing live battling illnesses.The enrgy alone from that act is amazing.

8:00 AM  
Blogger Cinderella said...

That's why so many people have made a living writing songs!

Good message...as always!

8:40 AM  
Blogger Tom Bailey said...

hill - I am glad that you liked it so much.

malinda-excellent point-Many do recomend doing journaling the good one ask to see it to hold people accountable too.

enemy- thank you

nick- thank you and you are right but sometimes creating positive thinking is challenging.

bett-thank you notes are not just good therapy they are an excellent business practise that is not done much today.

cind-thank you for your kind words.

I did not write this thinking I would get such high praises. I just think it is useful to blog information that people charge so much money for. If I could find a way to integrate accountability it would be fantastic. 500 dollar per hr type of therapy for free.

I take most of my content from taped lectures a friend of mine gave to me that was studying in high performance psychology. I have about 40 phd lectures on the subject and I listen to them over and over. More for myself to find ways to close the gap between what I am doing now and what my complete and full potential would be.

9:52 AM  
Blogger pissed off patricia said...

Thank you for sharing this info with your visitors. I believe my blogging helps me because I share my feelings and read in the comments the response of others. Sort of like group therapy.

I have written many letters to my now deceased father expressing my feeling about my childhood. Of course since he was dead, I never mailed them, but writing them helped me so much

11:28 AM  
Blogger Tom Bailey said...

Pissed, wow that is great. That is something that is suggested by therapists as well. Men that do it too but often do it secretly but women are able to share more freely.

As you can see from the responces here it is not a very popular thing among men. I convinced myself to do journaling as part of a bodybuilding and dieting journal on the same page as journaling other things. So that I didnt feel like I was journaling in a feminine way.

I also journaled business, diet, bodybuilding in addition to the stuff I mentioned here in previous posts.

What you are doing is the single best way I have ever heard of for getting closure when things have passed like this.

11:57 AM  
Blogger Skittles said...

That's some good advice

1:44 PM  
Blogger Enemy of the Republic said...

There are some experiences that people feel helpless about. I lost my mother 6 years ago and it almost destroyed me; she died in 3 weeks; it was a shock, very unexpected and my life suddenly became something else. I learned that many people want to help, but don't know how. Some say the wrong thing. Some think you should be over it in X amount of months. Life doesn't work that way. I can't talk about her without crying, but I've accepted that this is a wound in my life that will not heal, if healing means going back to who I was prior to her death. It has made me a better listener and I now can understand human suffering more clearly. The event started off a chain of other events that made me recognize both my humanity and mortality. Good comes from things we think are bad. We just have to have the wisdom to use it.

3:38 PM  
Blogger Tom Bailey said...

Enemy, that it is not uncommon. What I have seen be common place is that during the first 2 or 3 weeks after a death people are flooded with support. The pain doesnt go away for people right then. The pain sets in for people 2 and 3 months later. Then your supportive people are back to their normal lives.

At that time it can be very productive for a person to do something like I suggested. Working on sending out thank you notes, sending letters to people and even setting up work to do in that persons memory becomes a healthy distraction.

There is no right or wrong way to deal with these types of issues it is very personal. For me being told it is going to be ok, this will pass, things will get better... that just doesnt work for me. I wanted concrete steps and doing work in the persons honor worked for me but it wasnt suggested.

Trite suggestions started to offend me after awhile. Or people that would claim to understand what you are going through.... a person cant know exactly how a person feels.

Thats why I hope my post was not in any way going to make anyone feel wrong about how they deal with this. I was merely offering things that worked that are not talked about often.

I feel so lucky to have found a way to turn a negative into a great positive.... so many cant find a way and live their lives in pain that if they could only find that one or two ideas they could illiminate it.

I am greatful not because of what happened but because of my fortune in finding something amazing to deal with it.

Thank you for sharing enemy. I hope it makes you feel better to share.

4:07 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Great information here.

6:37 PM  
Blogger Shiawase said...

Thank you.

6:03 AM  
Blogger BSB said...

You have a really nice blog here!

Good for you! ;-)

But as you said, being positive takes a whole lot of work sometimes!

When reality kicks in, being positive is not always the first thing we think about!

When I was 14.. anyhow.. it would take too long to get into it.. ;-)

7:53 PM  
Blogger JeSais said...

Hey Tom, thanks for stopping by my blog... and leaving a comment even. How'd you find me??

Great suggestion about writing letters. Sort of a new twist on a Gratitude Journal. Staying positive in the face of adversity is the hardest thing... especially when it is so much easier to wallow in the sadness, the negative thoughts.

It is something I struggle with, so I try to surround myself with positive people. It's so easy for me to think the negative thought, to be negative, so keep the positive energy flowing and the good tips coming.

9:34 AM  
Blogger riz said...

Hi Tom,

How r u doing? Some really Nice points u have put out here.

Cheerz

Riz

Http://miragesoflife.blogspot.com

9:42 AM  
Blogger SR Intern said...

Thanks for your post, Tom.

All the best to you
Thuy

2:05 PM  
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11:35 PM  

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