I listen intently as she shares the deep hardship she’s been enduring—the struggle that’s gone on for years. She references her counselor at several points and the wisdom she’s been learning to apply to her life. She’s been able to take a month off of work to focus on her struggle, and since she doesn’t have kids, her life has gone silent in a really good way. I’m happy for her and prayerful this time will be just what she needs to get to a better place.
But deep down, I’m hung low by the reality that my life doesn’t lend to this type of rest. I can’t take a month off or go silent.
Have you ever felt the pain of struggling deeply, yet you don’t have the luxury of time or resources to deal with it? There’s a lot of talk about getting help, taking time off, and going quiet to begin dealing with the hard things in life. But for a mom and any other person who lives a full and demanding life without extra resources, this feels impossible—adding to the burden we’re already feeling.
If this is your reality, might I suggest some ways to begin healing even when your life can’t slow down and the resources you need aren’t available?
How to Begin Healing When You Don’t Have Time
1. Talk about it
Keeping your struggle to yourself only makes it worse. Choose a trusted friend or two you can share your burdens with—no matter how deep and no matter how painful. We weren’t meant to stay silent and alone. If you don’t voice your hurt, the people in your life won’t understand and they will assume you’re functioning at a normal pace and will expect more of you than you have to give.
2. Get outside help
The barrier most people face when wanting to get professional counseling is the cost. But don’t forget to consider the counseling pastor at your church. We’ve benefitted greatly from meeting with ours. A listening ear and an outside perspective does wonders. Don’t be afraid of talking to someone you may see each week at church. Don’t let that be a barrier. That’s what they do. It’s what God has gifted them to do. Take the step.
3. Make time for quiet
But I don’t have time. I get it. I’m in the same boat. But every one of us are involved in activities that are filling precious time we could be using elsewhere. Are there late-night Netflix binge sessions? Mindless Facebook feed scrolling? Books you’re devouring to numb the pain? These activities only fill our minds with more of what we don’t need. Sometimes we have to empty out to fill back up.
Get to bed earlier.
Do what it takes to get some good sleep.
Wake up when the house is sleeping. (If you have infants and young children waking you up in the wee hours, just get the most sleep possible. This may take self-discipline to make sure your own rest is a priority.)
Pray. Burdens don’t belong on your shoulders. God is willing and ready to take them off your mind.
Sit in silence.
Fast from binging on entertainment and social media.
4. Take care of your body
Excess sugar feeds inflammation, stress, and disease, so eat well. Move your body. Stretch. Breathe. Don’t forget to breathe.
5. Be honest with yourself
How are you really doing? Suppressing the pain deepens the pain. Be honest about how you’re really doing.
Do you need to humble yourself and ask for help with meals?
Do you need to say no to volunteering, extracurricular activities, and general busyness?
Let yourself be honest and slow down as necessary.
The fact that you’re struggling doesn’t make you weak, it makes you human. Don’t ever believe the lie that you’re the only one with problems you can’t solve or deep disappointments that leave you crushed. At some point, every single person comes to the end of themselves and needs to reach out for help. The fact that you feel stuck and out of hope means it’s time.
Father God, we praise You for being God over all—even the circumstances we think are out of Your reach. Help us remember and believe You are right here with us working in ways we can’t see and working it all out for our good and Your glory. We ask that You would provide everything we need. We know You are faithful and good—so very good. Give us hope in the places where despair once stood and peace in place of fear. We love You and trust You. In Jesus’ Name, Amen