Laughing is great medicine for when life is turning out particularly absurd or challenging. In my mid-twenties I first learned about the book, A Course in Miracles, which is based on the idea that the world we live in was created when we "forgot to laugh" at the idea that we could be "separate from our source."
It's a beautiful concept and a great gauge to see how much you are hooked into the ego's thought system of being separate and alone (and a victim).
If everything is heavy and serious, then you have definitely wandered into the quicksand.
If you get stuck in life's quicksand, which we all do from time to time, then I have some tips. The thing about quicksand is that your instincts do not serve you. Your instincts tell you to fight against the forces, but this makes things worse instead of better. The struggle itself helps you to sink faster.
On the other hand, when you do the opposite of what your fight and flight instincts tell you to do, things get better. In quicksand, if you relax and allow yourself to stretch out and create more body surface, then you will float to the surface and eventually free yourself, or at least be in a good place while you wait for someone to toss you a line.
The same is true for when you become hooked into an emotional storm. In order to avoid the trap of "struggling against" the difficult thoughts and feelings, it works to relax and open yourself up to what is showing up.
Here are the steps for when you are hit with an emotional storm. These steps are easy to remember as they spell out: S.T.O.P.
Step 1. Slow down.
Breath. Press your feet into the ground. Become aware of your physical body.
Step 2. Take note.
Notice what you are feeling and thinking. Notice the world around you and what you are doing.
Step 3. Open up.
Make space for what your thoughts and feelings; allow them to freely flow through you.
Step 4. Pursue values.
Remember your values, and find a way to act on them (no matter how small).
What are your values? More about that on Thursday.