It’s tried and true: life has its ups and downs. Based invariably on experiences and emotions, we have good days and not so good days. You may have faced a loss or a victory, received a job promotion or been fired, woke up feeling mellow or with a heart full of sunshine: all motions of life. The love we give ourselves should be a practice of all times. Our love should not be abandoned when the tide is high; that may in fact be when we need it the most. I am a firm believer in love being a verb because when love is felt, it is expressed. While we may express it differently, we express it nonetheless. While we do not love perfectly, we love nonetheless. We, in our imperfection deserve love too. Most importantly, our love. Give yourself a big hug. Right now. Show you some love. Whether actually wrap your arms around you, get you some dessert, treat yourself to a manicure, wear that dress: in however you best express it and need it today, show you some love.
Now, where were we going with this? Ah yes, bad moods. Man, it can be so hard to explain blues away because sometimes you have no tangible reason for feeling down. Sometimes, you are simply tired and trying to explain that to people who may not get it will tire you some more. You know what else tires you? Allowing your downs to rot your insides, dwelling and giving them permission to set the pace for your hour, day, evening, week, month. What you allow, grows. Up until this past weekend, I was mishandling my bad moods. Thankfully, something clicked in my spirit. I realised that I cannot simply cry or sleep my bad moods away. I knew that I needed the pep back in my step. I needed to feel good again. I needed, therefore I have the sole responsibility to get myself out of my funk. Which, if you ask the universe, is an act of self love: taking time to understand your dips, extending the grace that you need and finding solutions. Most beautifully, despite the responsibility resting in my hands, God is only a prayer away-willing, able and ready to give me the armour that I need.
Loving yourself out of a bad mood involves whatever works best for your soul. A great place to start is:
Self reflection: objective and honest thought about why you are feeling down. We always know what it is that has got our hearts heavy. Admit it to yourself, every mucky detail and free yourself of the hold it has over you. It is not that big a deal once you spell it out, fact by fact-not conspiracy theory type assessment. Name your emotions.
Self compassion: be kind to yourself. You are doing the best you can and if not, tomorrow is another day. Beating yourself down will only get you lower. Remember this: It is okay.
Self time: spend some time alone. I know that giving too much of my time and energy to others drains me. I need to be in solitude to recharge because I otherwise end up feeling exhausted and super irritable-does no one no good. More than that however, it is what I do with my “me time” that counts. Every situation is different. Sometimes a good cry is needed, other times journalling will suffice, watching a sermon, show or reading.
Prayer: the single most important key. It’s all the Grace of God: the hope, encouragement, knowing what to do to get myself back up-fruits of consultation with the one who knows and loves me most.
Write: writing makes the reflection process a lot more impactful and elucidates feelings. Write in communication with yourself. Some of the words that give me strength come from journal entries or posts that I wrote in bliss.
A treat– Ice-cream: let’s just say that in a perfect world, I would be paid to go ice-cream tasting. In different countries. Wait, does anyone actually get paid to do that because uuuh, where can I sign up?
Go offline: the wonders that staying away from social media will do for you. Drown out the buzz because a lot of times, the noise distracts you from your core and amplifies your insecurities.
A nice dress: look good, feel good.
Dance: seriously. Turn your fave on and jam out. You also burn calories while you’re at it-double yay.
Laughter: whatever makes you laugh, you need. Laughing always feels better.