What Do You Believe? Following Oprah's challenge of stating belief in 3 words As Oprah has been promoting her new series Belief, you  have likely seen this link to share what you believe in three words. I find that with the right mix of individuals, the conversation of belief can go on for hours and be taken in many directions. Many people do not openly feel comfortable discussing what they believe, while others may be able to go on for hours. Narrowing down what one believes into three words can be a challenge. When the link came into my social media feed, I immediately began to think of how I could  state and share my belief. At first I was stuck, as I wanted the statement to be powerful and meaningful. Once I wrote down my first statement, a flow began as I began a list. When considering the balance wheel of life; a belief in a religion or spirituality is as significant as one’s health and family. Without a belief in something, life can be out of balance and uneven. In the business of today’s world, belief can be forgotten. It is there but often not recognized until the routine of daily life is challenged with a hardship and struggle. Challenges often force us to question what we believe. As a counselor, I have walked with individuals who have lost their belief system and watched as others developed a belief system where one did not exist. Throughout my years as a grief counselor, I have had the privilege of working with  clients from many different belief systems other than my own. Always the constant learner, I have learned so much from my clients who have been practicing Jews, Buddhists, Muslims, Agnostic and simply uncertain. I continue to feel that we can learn from each other and often find comfort in beliefs that are different than our own. (If you are grieving, I feel that the Jewish traditions of death and mourning bring significant comfort and I am forever grateful for my Jewish clients for educating me as they go along their journey). I will be honest that life has often challenged my core beliefs. Personally I have endured many losses and challenges which have made me question. Professionally, as a clinical social worker, I continue to be privy to often horrible and painful stories in life. However, I also know that the human spirit is strong and that the strength comes from someplace; my belief is that it comes from a higher power.  I’ve also seen the good and kindness of the human race in horrific times and from individuals one would not necessarily expect. Today I encourage you to take some time to think about what you believe. Here are a few of my own. 2 Anxiety, depression and worry come from not being in the present. When life feels out of control; stop and ask what is going on right now. It is then that life may not feel as overwhelming. 4 Even if the current moment is painful, that moment will not last forever. This above mantra is one that I wrote over and over in my journal after my miscarriage. I knew that the pain and emotions I was feeling would not always be as deep. 3 I have never met anyone who has not endured something painful and difficult. Jobs are lost, relationships end and dreams sometimes do not come true. However, it is important to keep going. I suppose another statement could be: Life gets better!!

Today I am linking up with Grateful Heart Monday. I am thankful that I am able to express what I believe freely.

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19 Comments

  1. Sarah Elizabeth Frazer on October 19, 2015 at 9:06 am

    Great insights! Thanks for sharing. 🙂

  2. Emily @ Ember Grey. on October 19, 2015 at 10:46 am

    I think if we could simply respect others beliefs – even when they are different than our own beliefs and even if we don’t agree – this world would change so, so much. Thanks for sharing, Sheryl 🙂

    • Sheryl @ How to Make a Life on October 19, 2015 at 11:26 am

      I so agree with you Emily. I feel like there is often so much noise around this topic that no one truly hears what the other is saying. Often our beliefs are very much alike (sometimes we just don’t want to see that ).

  3. TheJessaOlsonBlog on October 19, 2015 at 11:07 am

    Thanks for sharing this. I think we can all co-exist no matter what we believe. I need to focus more on the right now.

    • Sheryl @ How to Make a Life on October 19, 2015 at 6:37 pm

      Jessa, I so agree. Our differences are often very similar if we only take the time to get to know each other.

  4. Daisy @ Simplicity Relished on October 19, 2015 at 12:00 pm

    I’m sure you’ve worked with clients who are– spiritually and religiously– coming from all different backgrounds. It’s so interesting to read your insight because of the experience you’ve had. Thanks for sharing it here! I think that being in touch with our core beliefs helps us to live intentionally, and to prioritize what really matters to us.

    • Sheryl @ How to Make a Life on October 19, 2015 at 6:36 pm

      I so agree with you Daisy. I’ve learned to be more in touch with my own beliefs as I’ve worked with others with differing perspectives. If one isn’t sure of their own, it makes it more difficult to work with others.

  5. Jess on October 19, 2015 at 12:59 pm

    I needed this today–thank you. I really have a hard time staying present and (surprise!) I struggle with anxiety. It is so hard to think outside of anxiety sometimes, so I’m going to keep your suggestions in mind. PS- I tried morning pages today for the first time!! 🙂

    • Sheryl @ How to Make a Life on October 19, 2015 at 6:35 pm

      Yea! I’m so glad you have started morning pages. Give it a few days and see how you feel. I’m so glad this was helpful. We all need to remember to be present as it’s so easy to let our minds go other places.

  6. Caroline @ In Due Time on October 19, 2015 at 4:44 pm

    Thankful that God is so faithful even as the storms and trials come!

  7. Latonya_lilthisandthat on October 19, 2015 at 6:32 pm

    I don’t think I could put it into three words, but I do agree we should take time to hone in on our beliefs.

  8. Michelle on October 19, 2015 at 8:35 pm

    For me, putting it into three words goes like this: Faith, Family, Friends. In that order, because without my faith, I couldn’t get through the ups and downs the other two can often put on us. I loved your words today.

  9. Sarah @ Sometimesphotojenik on October 23, 2015 at 6:18 pm

    Gosh this post is so wonderful! I can’t imagine how much you’ve learned in your career and professional life. I think it is so interesting to dialogue with people of other faiths and jump at the opportunity. I think 3 words is so hard, but I love all your pictures above especially the one that says “It Gets Better”

    • Sheryl @ How to Make a Life on October 24, 2015 at 4:55 pm

      Thanks Sarah! It wasn’t easy to narrow things down to 3 words but I came up with some. I’ve been lucky to work with the people I’ve worked with. I don’t necessarily live in an area that is huge in diversity in regards to religion but surprisingly my career as a grief counselor allowed me to encounter so many different religions. I’ve always been grateful for those clients who let me learn from them.

      • Sarah @ Sometimesphotojenik on October 29, 2015 at 3:26 pm

        That’s really cool that your career has allowed you to work with many of different religions despite not living in an area that seems to be very diverse. Such wonderful experience!

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