Yesterday as I grabbed my morning coffee at the neighborhood shop, I spotted an acquaintance. I had seen her around the gym where she is always intense and focused but had only spoken with her once or twice over the years. I said hello and reminded her who I was (You know when you get that feeling that they know they know you but might not remember your name or the context?) and we stood together waiting for our orders.
“My God,” she said, looking at me intently, “You always look so glowing. Why is that?”
I was shocked. So shocked, in fact, that the truth just popped out of my mouth with no filters or forethought.
“I am very happy,” I said. “How are you?”
“Happy, huh?…Well, I can’t brag on my happiness, (Whoops- did I just brag and not know it?) but I am okay.”
I let the “brag” comment go by and asked about her work and discovered that she had none and seemed to feel there were no prospects. She was moving away at the end of the month and her demeanor was one of defeat and unhappiness. I wished her well in her new home and many job prospects to come and bit my tongue on any advice about how to decide to make happiness a part of her life. Prayer would have to do. This was not the time, place, or person, but it did get me thinking about it.
If you are reading this, you probably have Burning Mouth Syndrome (BMS) or another chronic pain condition, or you love someone who does. There is a great deal of depression and sadness that can come with that package, and this may not be the time or place for you to think about it, but consider adding it to your “to-do” list.
Science tells us that the biochemistry of the brain is something we can affect by altering our behaviors. Read more HERE. I found this hopeful, but also a good warning not to let the “Nunnys” out there take us down their negative drains. The article points out some very positive things we can do to help ourselves, and I am putting them on my tool belt for coping with Burning Mouth Syndrome. Here are my condensed versions of the wisdom in the article.
- Practice Gratitude. Feel it, show it, and express it. It’s a natural mood elevator.
- Change the Pattern. If you have a pattern of complaining or self-pity, try to be aware and cut that pattern off. You can even do it mid-sentence or thought! Try a new one to replace it. Patterns are often as strong as addictions and it will take time and effort to change them.
- Make a Choice. Choose to be happy regardless of the circumstances of your life. A choice is the most powerful thing in your life. You cannot change the world around you, but only you control how you react to it.
Will you glow? Maybe! And maybe that glow will attract someone to you who will become a friend, a loved one, or simply someone you can help that day.