Pack Up All Your Cares and Woes

 

A terrific article in the Huffington Post written by a Kate Bratskeir (http://www.huffingtonpost.com/kate-bratskeir) references a study conducted last year that showed people who wrote down the negative thoughts about themselves and then literally threw the paper away were less likely to be troubled by them as compared to those who retained the document.

This has interesting potential for us Suddenly Solos.  Unlike the blissfully youthful and attractive Ms. Bratskeir, we likely have a far deeper well of regrets, doubts and stress-inducing thoughts that have been developed over the years.  The study (http://pss.sagepub.com/content/early/2012/11/21/0956797612449176.abstract) provides a low-cost, cathartic, and immune-from-insurance denial methodology for us to employ if we’re even momentarily feeling down or stressed.

Find a quiet corner, some paper and a pen (no computer for this one – we need the tactile reinforcement), and write down what is troubling you.  Hopefully this will not take several sheets of paper and require you to miss a few meals, but if it does, so be it.  When you’re finished with the litany, take the paper and crumple, shred, tear or otherwise destroy it.  Then, put the flotsam in the trash and walk away. Take a walk, a few cleansing breaths or, if the timing is right, a drink to celebrate your ability to forgive yourself.  Life is not for unfairly held regrets.  Thanks, Kate.

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