Dwell on it or D.E.A.L with it

Updated: Jun 22, 2021

I have had a very stressful life- starting in childhood. Chronic stress and traumatic events can set someone up for negative thinking. It's a challenging cycle to break. Retreating into one's mind and rehearsing past painful situations or creating new scenarios can help one feel in control when everything around feels out of control.

However, those negative thoughts are harmful to our health.

I used to be a negative thinker. I dwelt on #allthethings that had happened, might have happened, and what I should have done about it. By the time I got to work or home, I was fussy and difficult to be around. Complaining Connie, Negative Nancy, and Whiney Wendy all came from my stinkin' thinkin'.

In fact, dwelling on negative thoughts was instrumental in my health crisis. I came to a point when I KNEW I had to stop that detrimental-to-my-health habit. It took diligence and time.

Now, I'm finally free. Unless triggered. LOL, but seriously- the triggers are getting less and less. AND! I use the tool I'll share below to ease my way through the healing/ handling process for when something triggers me.

I have an ongoing situation that I had to choose to either make peace with or stay stuck frustrated, upset and so on. This and that wasn't changing- so I had to change. (I'm not sharing all the deets here. Obviously, there ARE times to walk away, move on, change jobs, etc. This wasn't one of those times).

Anyway, I remember a time when another thing happened, and I found myself slipping down that slippery slope of negative thinking. "If they would just... If this and that... this always happens..." then I became aware of what was happening.

My heart had started racing. The peace I usually felt was gone, and the familiar bitterness, resentment, and other yuck was present.

In my frustration, I wanted a way to reconcile the reality of my situation. I knew I needed to feel the hurt and disappointment (appropriately) and continue moving through the healing process.

I felt the following statement drop into my spirit.

"You can dwell on it or deal with it."

I'm a Believer. I knew that was Holy Spirit. So I sat with that profound statement as I acknowledged what had happened to bring about the hurt. As I thought about the action steps needed to "get over" what had just happened, I came up with how to D.E.A.L. with stressful, painful situations.

D.E.A.L. is an acronym I now use with my clients and me to help move through the healing process.

D- Decide

E- Evaluate

A- Apply

L- Let go

1) The first step is to decide. Decide to do what needs to be done at the moment to feel the emotions appropriately so that we can continue through the healing process.

Mental, physical, and emotional health promoting actions like ...

  • Choosing to come under a positive umbrella regarding thoughts, words, and actions

  • Feeling emotions appropriately

  • Guarding your heart (aka set boundaries)- as needed

2) Then, we evaluate the situation.

  • What really happened?

  • Did we play a part?

  • Were there boundary violations? Did we have clear boundaries in place and in force? (Check out this blog on boundaries).

Things like that. We look at it from all sides- including the other party's point of view. I'm not talking about abusive situations. Always get help for that.

3) Next, we apply the tools, tips, and techniques we know we need to do in stressful situations. Stress relieving techniques like …

  • Practice a simple deep breathing technique to calm us down and give us time to think.

  • Pray and ask for wisdom on how to handle the situation.

  • Memorize one or two Scriptures or affirmations that will help ground you in the moment so you can calmly do what needs to be done.

4) Finally, once we've moved through the process. Did what needed to be done. For our healing and health's sake, we need to …

  • Forgive

  • Let go

  • and move on

Sometimes we just want the destination (healed, peace, joy).

Well, to 'get' to the destination, there is a 'through' point in the journey.

Survival techniques and unhealthy habits have to be unlearned and replaced with healthier habits and ways of handling difficult or stressful situations.

Emotional healing and wellness are possible. Don't stay stuck. Climb out of the pit of despair & discouragement and take action.

Reach out for support from me if you've tried on your own for too long.

Carpe Diem (make the most of the present time)

Here are some steps you can do -- right now.

  1. Practice the steps in the D.E.A.L. process above when something stressful or painful happens.

  2. Conquer negative thinking.

  3. Reach out for help as needed.

To help you get started…

I created a FREE super simple Stress Less SOS handbook that will walk you through the powerfully effective fundamentals for taking your life back from what's stressing you.

Lessons Included ...

Simple stress-relieving techniques like

  • Deep breathing and resting

  • Prayer & meditation

  • The power of thoughts and words

  • How to set goals

  • How to get motivated

  • How to get your hope back

  • Nutrition

  • and more ...

You CAN take back your life from the negative effects of stress, anxiety, or emotional pain. ​

  • From the dis-ease

  • From the racing heart

  • From the inability to fall or stay asleep

  • From the mind that is constantly replaying the past

  • and other symptoms of chronic stress.

The healing journey starts with one step.

Take that first step of your healing journey by signing up.

“It is not what we do occasionally that brings victory in our lives,

but what we do consistently and diligently. A little obedience [healthy habits] mixed with a lot of disobedience [unhealthy habits] still equals an unpleasant life.”

– Joyce Meyer

Here’s to your health!

🦋 Missy

Related Posts

How to Start Healing Painful Emotions

Surviving Temporary Interruptions

How Resilience Can Help Manage Stress and Relieve Anxiety


7-Day Stress Less SOS Email Course

Stress Less SOS Action Guide (available on Kindle or paperback)

Healing the Soul of a Woman Part 1 | Enjoying Everyday Life | Joyce Meyer

It is my goal to teach, encourage, and empower you to make health-promoting decisions so you can reclaim your life and health from stress or emotional pain.

Click here > Work with Me to start or continue your healing journey.

Missy Rankin, CTNC, CHC

Certified Transformation Coach

Certified Hormone Coach


Science and/or Fact-Based: I write blogs based on science and/or evidence-based information. I add my experience(s) and education where applicable.

Faith-Based: I may also add scriptures and faith-based information as well.

The information shared here is not intended to replace a one-on-one relationship with a qualified healthcare professional and is not intended as medical advice. It is intended as sharing of information only. Legal Policies

This post may include affiliate links to products I have personally used and/or recommend. At no extra cost to you, I may earn a small percentage so that I can keep my digital products and coaching services affordable. You can read the full disclosure here.

#emotionalhealing #emotionalwellness #healingemotions #relievingstress #releasestress #improvehealth #gethealthy #stresslesssos


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