Today I’m struggling to find a bright side. I troll through Facebook, seeing both the positives and negatives of the world. I think about how fortunate I am, truly blessed, to have a life such as I do. I now feel guilty that these bestowed blessings are not enough to lift my mood. So I keep searching my brain. Why am I feeling such a void today?
I think a lot of it has to do with facing the music of growing up. Not that I’m not a grown up now, but do you remember the feeling when you were young and the magic that the holidays held? It felt like weeks of joyous anticipation and excitement that just seemed to go on forever. I’m sure the weeks at a time off of school helped, too. As adults, we look forward to just a few days off. Those days rush by faster than shit through a goose, so to speak, and we are back at work again. The little magic that was is now gone. I am suddenly regretting not taking a few more days off work. When I was with my family, it felt good. Just plain old warm fuzzies. Although it is easy to get wrapped up in the commercial-ness of the holidays, it is also a time of realignment of priorities for me. Family and friends come first and work takes a back seat. The way it should be. Of course work is important and, if the piling bills tell me anything, a necessity to life.
Revelation: The bright side is harder to find when our priorities are out of alignment.
I’m now thinking of how good I feel when everything is in order. I feel great when I take a day to myself to paint. I feel great when I spend time with my husband or with friends or family. I feel great when I put in my time at work but am able to focus on my real life afterhours and have a firm grasp of balance. I felt great when I was making my writing, blogging, and DIY a priority. Emphasis on felt--past tense—because I lost it. I’ve lost the balance.
Listen, we are all entitled to our sad, mopey days. Especially on gray, rainy days. Life happens. We fall out of balance. We have too much teeter and not enough totter. But being in continuous rut and being unable to find the sun is a problem. How do we reconnect with ourselves, get even-keeled, and find our bright side? This is what I’ve come up with so far….
1. Allow yourself to be sad….but just for a minute.
It is always important to recognize how you feel and to be entitled to feel that way. There is no such thing as a stupid feeling. We feel how we feel for a reason. Once you’ve had time to process your state of mind, then you can go about moving on.
2. Recognize why you feel the way you do.
It took me awhile—and writing this post—to figure out why I was feeling so blah. Being a little lonely and not maintaining my life balance was my answer. What’s the real cause of your emotional turbulence? An event? Overall life progression? The weather? Try to figure out what is causing the down-in-the-dumps feeling so you can really address it and change it.
3. Know your bright side.
Clearly to be able to get back to the sunlight you should know what your bright side is. It’s hard to find a target when you are shooting in the dark. What are the things or what is the state of mind that brings you joy and peace? Create a list of things that can help lead you when you’ve gone astray.
4. Find your center.
One of the most helpful things that I practice when I am feeling lost or out of control is a method of finding my center and finding my zen. I find a quiet space, put on the Reiki and Mediation channel on Pandora, close my eyes, and focus on deep breaths. With each breath in I visualize white, good energy going in. With each breath out I exhale black, negative energy. I clear my mind and focus on my breath and the sounds of the music. I try to block other thoughts trying to edge their way in; I tell myself that I will be allowed to think about it later, but that right now isn’t the time or place.
Life is beautiful, but it is also challenging. We all experience ups and downs, sometimes daily. It is important to be able to maintain a sense of balance and inner zen, however that may look for you. If the above techniques don’t work for you, try to find something that else does. Maybe kickboxing for 30 minutes does it for you. Maybe it’s a nap. Or knitting a new scarf. However you find your bright side, make sure to make note of it so you can find it again on a rainy day.