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Getting unstuck

Friday, 6 November, 2020 - 4:21 pm

 Down and Out.jpg

It’s typical to withdraw inwardly when feeling down and out of sorts. When feeling sick, most people spend their time alone, away from others and caring for themselves. This is also the case when people are feeling mentally depleted, overworked or down - for whatever reason. 

While there are times that what’s needed is to indulge in some down time and reset, often the excessive focus on oneself can actually perpetuate the funk, leaving the individual worse than where they started. 

Counterintuitive though it might be, the solution is to work for the benefit of others. When something is highlighted and brought into clearer focus, it’s flaws are magnified as well. Withdrawing brings the focus on oneself and makes us all the more aware of our own frailties and failings. 

Shifting to consider how we can bring benefit and blessing to another swings the focus away from us and getting stuck in our “stuff”. More importantly, it elevates us to another level at which our issues are not true obstacles. 

With our close focus on ourselves, every bump is perceived as an obstacle. Raising above the self to focus on others helps us keep the inevitable bumps in perspective and realize how little they truly can interfere. 

On that note, it’s relevant to mention how our Torah portion begins; Abraham is sitting at the entrance of his tent searching the horizon for potential guests. Notable is the fact that he was then recovering from his circumcision, having been commanded by G-d at the age of 99. 

While certainly he could have been excused from hosting guests for a few days, he would not allow his discomfort to stop him from looking out for others. 

If you’re feeling down, consider how you can bring benefit and joy to another. The sooner you think about another, the sooner you’ll feel better about yourself. 

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