Such a simple phrase, but can you feel how much power it has? “I have herpes.” When you say these three words, what effect do they have on you? There’s a way to move past these feelings. And the only way is through.

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How much time do you spend worrying about how your future will be negatively affected by herpes, wishing you didn’t have to deal with herpes, scared about when the next herpes outbreak with come? This spinning of the wheels is all too common with people suffering with herpes. Can’t you be more productive with your time? Isn’t there something more important to put your mind to? Of course there is.

Think of how much energy can be freed up in your life if that simple phrase can be just another three words. The power of words is unmistakable. And the word “herpes” has a whole lot wrapped up in it, doesn’t it? It has pain, anguish, not being enough, unable to find true love, disgust, worthlessness — the list continues. How can the word carry so much power? One reason is because it’s never said aloud except in the difficult times. It is shied away from. And in the shadows it weighs you down with shame.

Okay, enough of the hum-drummery. Let’s be perfectly clear: It simply doesn’t have to be like this. The process of moving above herpes as a barrier in life is to deal with it head on. Look at it. Study it. Figure out why you feel what you feel. And the first place to start is with the word itself. Herpes.

Try this. A first step to getting back the energy that’s tied up in herpes is to simply speak the word aloud. We avoid the word to save ourselves from having to feel what it might bring up, what it might remind us of. Do it in the privacy of your own home. Stand in front of your bathroom mirror. Look yourself in the eye. Say “I have herpes” … Then pay attention … become aware of what happens when you say it. Does your stomach tighten up? Does your heart sink? Do you feel like crying? Yelling? Do you feel like numbing out? Allow all of that to come up in a safe way. But behind all of that be a loving witness to yourself as you experience everything. Eventually, if you truly feel what is coming up instead of numbing it out, mention of the word will produce the similar effects as the phrase “I have the flu …” It no longer has nearly the charge. Above all, be gentle with yourself throughout this process. And remind yourself that it is a process.

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