By Vernalee
Undoubtedly, you have heard the expression that a person has a “cloud hanging over their head.”
That quote refers to a situation or future event that makes you worry or feel unhappy.
Another equivalent saying that is spiced up slightly adds that there is a
“Black cloud hanging over your head” which refers to a
feeling you have that something unpleasant is in the air or it can mean that you’re depressed or unhappy about something. Adding further, the black cloud may signify that you are in a dicey situation or that Lady Luck has vanished.” Though it is an expression and a feeling, for illustrative purposes, do know that we may have people floating on those clouds that are the root of our uneasiness and discomfort.
Now in real life, we know that clouds are visible masses of condensed water vapor floating in the atmosphere, typically high above the ground; and that although we feel the figurative effects, we are not literally walking around with our personal one over our heads. However, when we feel uneasy or uncomfortable, our inferences to visible references heighten our understanding sometimes. So when we feel those clouds, (and we will) be they “black” or not,
“here are some strategies that we can use that will help banish the stress.

1. Support Systems. If you’re constantly running on empty, your mind, body, and soul will suffer the repercussions of your tenacity. There’s no shame in asking for a helping hand. Sometimes, you’ll be able lean on a spouse, coworker, or friend, but if you find the need to talk to a therapist; do so. Start with having a discussion with your partner or family and see if you can brainstorm a way to eliminate daily stress pockets.
2. Self Care. What do you enjoy doing? Knitting, relaxing in a bubble bath, drawing, lounging in bed watching reruns of Sex and the City? Indulge yourself in your favorite restful activity a few times each week; carving out a few hours each weekend to indulge in your favorite lazy activity. Choose at least one weeknight to relax after work. Start with a walk outside. You might need your sunglasses because you have been under that dark cloud for so long. But trust me — there is sunshine, fresh air, beautiful things to look at out there!
3. Simplify life. Simplify your routines, your commitments, your information intake, your cluttered rooms, and have less stress as a result. Identify those things that are most important in your life…and then get rid of the rest. It may not be quite that easy, but you can certainly start somewhere with this idea. Think of just one thing that has been bothering you that you can remove and do it. Once you start with one, you will see a ray of sunlight.
4. Meditation. With meditation, we can learn to transform our minds from chaos to calm. And it is really not as hard as you might think. A favorite meditation is a “Breathing Meditation”. It is simple and you can do it anywhere. Sit in any comfortable position, with your eyes partially closed. Now breathe. Just breathe normally through your nose. Notice how your body moves and what the air feels like. If your mind wanders, just bring it back to your breath. Even just practicing this for two minutes a day will add another ray of sunlight.”
Into each life, the clouds give way to water and a little rain will fall. Taking this advice in stride though, the sky is the limit as we look to make our days and life pleasantly enjoyable. Removing the gloom and doom with a replacement of brightness and happiness is a good thing! Let’s get started! Take out your umbrella, let the sun rays hit your face, and start your day and journey by walking out of a dark cloudy day to a scorching sunny day. Let’s “feel fine on Cloud 9;” in our euphoric state of natural happiness!
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