Day 787: Relief

I’ve had two intense days, so far, at my group psychotherapy conference in San Francisco. It’s been quite a relief to share thoughts, feelings, and authentic connections with so many kind, wise, and experienced people. And — as is true, for me, with any intense experience — it’s also been a relief when each day’s been over.

This morning, I’m going back into San Francisco for my third and final day at the conference. I’ll be seeing one of my group therapy heroes — Irvin Yalom — speak. Then, I’ll go to a workshop and a panel discussion.  I’ll be driving in to the city by myself, so it will be a relief once I get there.

Speaking of relief, here’s some visual relief I saw on my travels, yesterday:

IMG_6062 IMG_6064 IMG_6070 IMG_6075 IMG_6077  IMG_6082 IMG_6096 IMG_6102 IMG_6112 IMG_6121 IMG_6122 IMG_6124

Because relief can be so important (especially during times of stress), I’m going to repeat the first image in this post, which I saw on the beautiful ferry ride from Oakland to San Francisco early yesterday morning:


Ahhhh!  What a relief!

Since I’m flying back to cold and icy Boston tomorrow, it’s important for me to be aware of those things that provide relief for me.  Here’s a quick “relief” list, off the top of my relieved head:

  • people I love,
  • people who love me,
  • cats (who I experience as loving creatures),
  • beautiful scenery,
  • the moon and the stars,
  • speaking my mind,
  • balancing my needs with other people’s needs,
  • writing blog posts,
  • doing work I love and believe in,
  • taking care of my basic needs, including having enough water, nourishing food, and sleep,
  • accepting all the different parts of me,
  • accepting the beautiful differences in other people,
  • a good cry, sometimes,
  • having all my feelings,
  • recognizing my fears about the future, letting them go, and then refocusing on the present moment,
  • recognizing any regrets about the past, letting those go, and then refocusing on the present moment,
  • staying in touch with my self-worth (which does not change, no matter what is going on, inside of me and outside of me),
  • forgiving inevitable human mistakes (from myself and others),
  • letting go of any need to be perfect or to be immediately good at anything new,
  • connections with other people,
  • down time for myself to be alone, and
  • music.

What music might provide relief here, today?

This is the first “Relief” song that popped into my head:

… but that’s an old Alka Seltzer commercial (on YouTube here) and I don’t how much of a relief it is.

Since most of my photos today are from a ferry, it’s a relief for me to find “Ferry Cross the Mersey” as performed by my favorite musician, Pat Metheny (here on YouTube):

For those of you who like music with lyrics, here’s the original by Gerry and Pacemakers (found here on YouTube):

What gives you relief? I’d be relieved to hear from you, in any way.

Thanks to Irvin Yalom, to my friend Lawry (pictured above), to Pat Metheny, to Pacemakers of all kinds, to people attending the group psychotherapy conference in San Francisco, to ferries everywhere, to all those who can be kind as best they can, and to you — of course! — for getting whatever relief there is today.

Categories: personal growth | Tags: , , , , , , | 39 Comments

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39 thoughts on “Day 787: Relief

  1. I too have heard Irwin Yalom speak – and I am so awed by him…Enjoy!!

  2. sorry – meant ‘v’ not ‘w’

  3. yeseventhistoowillpass

    What were you doing in The Port of Oakland? That’s where I work from time to time…

    • I’m staying with friends in Piedmont, and I took the Ferry from Oakland to San Francisco to go to the Hyatt for my conference. It’s wonderful to know that you sometimes work there!

      • yeseventhistoowillpass

        I work in Piedmont.. Might rain tomorrow! Stay dry!

      • We were in the same place! How wonderful. And now I’m back in Boston. I hope you are enjoying that beautiful area right now.

      • yeseventhistoowillpass

        I am heading to work:) Warm day… No rain as promised….

  4. Relief for me: finding your post here each day. A loving family that includes three cats and a Labrador retriever. Sunshine. Smiles. Laughter. Hope. Giving the best of me, not expecting a return on my investment, but for the joy of simply giving.
    Friends who don’t walk out when depression walks in. Neighbors loving each other enough to align the fact that no one can move away unless we all move and relocate together. (We love our community.)
    Relief, finding hope during the dark. Relief in medications and a doctor that helps me by monitoring their efficacy, changing them if they no longer are working.
    Relief, by allowing myself to expose to the world that I have a mental illness. I do so in hopes that relief will come to others when they can stand and say, “I have a mental illness.”
    Relief in knowing that sickness does not define us, but empowers us to move toward changing the perceptions of those who, not of their own fault, are ignorant and blind of what they do not understand.
    Relief that a stigma can be erased; simply accepting that it will take time.

  5. Glad you are enjoying the conference!

  6. I think the boat should be renamed “Awww, what a relief” šŸ˜‰

  7. Julia’s you found relief, and I solution love the relief boat! It must be a relief, too, to be in a warm climate for one more day.
    My relief? The beach in Kino, where, to my great relief, I am headed in a week.

  8. Don’t know why it wrote Julia’s. I typed Glad.

  9. Love your list and the beautiful captures. Relief is a word I often spell wrong but when I feel it, there is no confusion. I hope it sticks around for you.

  10. I also love your relief list, and those skyline landscapes you photographed! Thanks for sharing this great trip.

  11. I love your list Ann!
    For me, its a relief that the conference is going well … and also that you will be home soon with those who love and miss you.

    • This comment relieved and moved me when I saw it during my conference today, Val. As always, you are a relieving and loving presence.

  12. Beautiful photos, good advice and an old favourite from the Pacemakersā€¦ thanks.

  13. Your time in California has provided relief from my Syracuse winter, Ann.

    Here’s a story I hope gives you relief from last-day blues. When I was working for the big daily I had a phone interview with Gerry of the Pacemakers. Even though we spoke the same language, his accent was so foreign to me, I could hardly understand a word the man said. When I hung up, my editor said, “How did it go?” I said, “I don’t know.”

    Have a good last evening by the Bay, my friend.

  14. Those are good list that should work for every to have a relief. I feel relief to learn from the list that can help here.

  15. I hope that you enjoyed meeting Irving Yalom. I’ve enjoyed some of his books very much.

    • I loved hearing him speak today, Maureen. He did a book signing, but the line was loooooong, so I didn’t meet him. I did buy one of his books — “Staring at the Sun: Overcoming the Terror of Death.” Guess what I did with it? (Hint: see my post “I’m a Loser.”)

  16. Safe travels homeward! I knew the East coast felt less important to me these last few days…

  17. Pingback: Day 788: Turning bad into good | The Year(s) of Living Non-Judgmentally

  18. Gene Phillips

    I miss the Bay Area sometimes. I used to refer to those container cranes as imperial walkers.

  19. Pingback: Day 1541: Good to know | The Year(s) of Living Non-Judgmentally

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