Things a have been so great for me lately.
I guess that's why I feel so discouraged when I have a bad day(or week).
I had one recently. It sucked.
I was blue and feeling sad. For more than a few days.
And then I was disappointed in myself because I was sad and couldn't snap out of it.
Which is dumb.
Because it's not my fault that I feel sad every now and then.
The truth of the matter is, I still have depression. It's a disease. It never goes completely away. It's always there, lurking beneath the surface and I never quite know when it will rear it's ugly head.
And so when it does rear it's head I retreat. Like a turtle, into my own head while at work or out in public, and into my house or bed when I'm at home. Just getting through the day is difficult.
Throw in a couple of nights where I don't sleep and it results in a few miserable days.
I often underestimate how getting enough sleep affects my mental health.
My body needs rest. More rest than I give it most of the time, especially with the type of kidney disease I have.
I'm supposed to get on average 9-10 hours of sleep per night. Since I'm not six years old, that isn't going to happen. (Can you see me going to bed at 8:30 every week night? Yeah, me neither).
I do try to get at least 8, but realistically I'm logging between 6 1/2 and 7 1/2 hours per night.
I know a lot of moms with small children who are like "seven and a half hours! I'd kill for that much sleep!"
But it's not enough for me. Sometimes I wish I could just be healthy and not swollen from retaining fluids and achy and so tired I can't keep my eyes open.
But it is what it is and dwelling on it won't change it. But having a physical ailment and/or disease is hard.
Dragon boat practices are taking a lot out of me. Don't get me wrong, I still love it very much.
But it consumes every Sunday of my week, with it's long drive and demanding physical activity(which I need), and hours in the hot sun. All of which are draining.
I haven't been riding. At all. And I miss it so much. There is never enough time in the week. I have good intentions to ride after work. But then I get home and I'm so tired.
That leaves Saturday as my only riding day, and that is eaten up by resting and spending time with joe and errands that didn't get done during the week.
I feel like such a complainer and I've been really trying not to do that so much.
I guess what I'm trying to say is that life is really great, but I still struggle sometimes. Not nearly as often as I used to(NOT AT ALL), but still once in a while and I need to tell myself it's ok to have a bad day(or week).
It doesn't mean things won't get better. I just have to wait it out.
Thankfully, as of this writing it has passed. I'm feeling 100% better.
It's just a bad day. Not a bad life.
Oh and on a side note, something that really irritated me last week: I was at the grocery store picking up some things for dinner and I splurged and bought myself some sunflowers, because sunflowers are happy right? I never buy myself flowers but I needed a pick me up. I get up to the register and the checker(who was a woman) said "Sunflowers huh? Somebody must have been a good girl this week"
What?! What does that even mean?
No, actually someone works their butt off every week and can buy herself sunflowers any time she wants to thank you very much.
A friend posted this article on FB and it's a great read. There is some awesome advice on how to make it through a rough patch. I will for sure be coming back to it the next time I'm feeling down.
#1. Pain is part of growing.
Sometimes life closes doors because it’s time to move forward. And that’s a good thing because we often won’t move unless circumstances force us to. When times are tough, remind yourself that no pain comes without a purpose. Move on from what hurt you, but never forget what it taught you. Just because you’re struggling doesn’t mean you’re failing. Every great success requires some type of worthy struggle to get there. Good things take time. Stay patient and stay positive. Everything is going to come together; maybe not immediately, but eventually.
Remember that there are two kinds of pain: pain that hurts and pain that changes you. When you roll with life, instead of resisting it, both kinds help you grow.
#2. Everything in life is temporary.
Every time it rains, it stops raining. Every time you get hurt, you heal. After darkness there is always light – you are reminded of this every morning, but still you often forget, and instead choose to believe that the night will last forever. It won’t. Nothing lasts forever.
So if things are good right now, enjoy it. It won’t last forever. If things are bad, don’t worry because it won’t last forever either. Just because life isn’t easy at the moment, doesn’t mean you can’t laugh. Just because something is bothering you, doesn’t mean you can’t smile. Every moment gives you a new beginning and a new ending. You get a second chance, every second. You just have to take it and make the best of it. (Read The Last Lecture.)
#3. Worrying and complaining changes nothing.
Those who complain the most, accomplish the least. It’s always better to attempt to do something great and fail than to attempt to do nothing and succeed. It’s not over if you’ve lost; it’s over when you do nothing but complain about it. If you believe in something, keep trying. Don’t let the shadows of the past darken the doorstep of your future. Spending today complaining about yesterday won’t make tomorrow any brighter. Take action instead. Let what you’ve learned improve how you live. Make a change and never look back.
And regardless of what happens in the long run, remember that true happiness begins to arrive only when you stop complaining about your problems and you start being grateful for all the problems you don’t have.
#4. Your scars are symbols of your strength.
Don’t ever be ashamed of the scars life has left you with. A scar means the hurt is over and the wound is closed. It means you conquered the pain, learned a lesson, grew stronger, and moved forward. A scar is the tattoo of a triumph to be proud of. Don’t allow your scars to hold you hostage. Don’t allow them to make you live your life in fear. You can’t make the scars in your life disappear, but you can change the way you see them. You can start seeing your scars as a sign of strength and not pain.
Rumi once said, “The wound is the place where the Light enters you.” Nothing could be closer to the truth. Out of suffering have emerged the strongest souls; the most powerful characters in this great world are seared with scars. See your scars as a sign of “YES! I MADE IT! I survived and I have my scars to prove it! And now I have a chance to grow even stronger.”
#5. Every little struggle is a step forward.
In life, patience is not about waiting; it’s the ability to keep a good attitude while working hard on your dreams, knowing that the work is worth it. So if you’re going to try, put in the time and go all the way. Otherwise, there’s no point in starting. This could mean losing stability and comfort for a while, and maybe even your mind on occasion. It could mean not eating what, or sleeping where, you’re used to, for weeks on end. It could mean stretching your comfort zone so thin it gives you a nonstop case of the chills. It could mean sacrificing relationships and all that’s familiar. It could mean accepting ridicule from your peers. It could mean lots of time alone in solitude. Solitude, though, is the gift that makes great things possible. It gives you the space you need. Everything else is a test of your determination, of how much you really want it.
And if you want it, you’ll do it, despite failure and rejection and the odds. And every step will feel better than anything else you can imagine. You will realize that the struggle is not found on the path, it is the path. And it’s worth it. So if you’re going to try, go all the way. There’s no better feeling in the world… there’s no better feeling than knowing what it means to be ALIVE. (Angel and I discuss this in more detail in the “Goals and Success” chapter of 1,000 Little Things Happy, Successful People Do Differently.)
#6. Other people’s negativity is not your problem.
Be positive when negativity surrounds you. Smile when others try to bring you down. It’s an easy way to maintain your enthusiasm and focus. When other people treat you poorly, keep being you. Don’t ever let someone else’s bitterness change the person you are. You can’t take things too personally, even if it seems personal. Rarely do people do things because of you. They do things because of them.
Above all, don’t ever change just to impress someone who says you’re not good enough. Change because it makes you a better person and leads you to a brighter future. People are going to talk regardless of what you do or how well you do it. So worry about yourself before you worry about what others think. If you believe strongly in something, don’t be afraid to fight for it. Great strength comes from overcoming what others think is impossible.
All jokes aside, your life only comes around once. This is IT. So do what makes you happy and be with whoever makes you smile, often.
#7. What’s meant to be will eventually, BE.
True strength comes when you have so much to cry and complain about, but you prefer to smile and appreciate your life instead. There are blessings hidden in every struggle you face, but you have to be willing to open your heart and mind to see them. You can’t force things to happen. You can only drive yourself crazy trying. At some point you have to let go and let what’s meant to be, BE.
In the end, loving your life is about trusting your intuition, taking chances, losing and finding happiness, cherishing the memories, and learning through experience. It’s a long-term journey. You have to stop worrying, wondering, and doubting every step of the way. Laugh at the confusion, live consciously in the moment, and enjoy your life as it unfolds. You might not end up exactly where you intended to go, but you will eventually arrive precisely where you need to be. (Read A New Earth.)
#8. The best thing you can do is to keep going.
Don’t be afraid to get back up – to try again, to love again, to live again, and to dream again. Don’t let a hard lesson harden your heart. Life’s best lessons are often learned at the worst times and from the worst mistakes. There will be times when it seems like everything that could possibly go wrong is going wrong. And you might feel like you will be stuck in this rut forever, but you won’t. When you feel like quitting, remember that sometimes things have to go very wrong before they can be right. Sometimes you have to go through the worst, to arrive at your best.
Yes, life is tough, but you are tougher. Find the strength to laugh every day. Find the courage to feel different, yet beautiful. Find it in your heart to make others smile too. Don’t stress over things you can’t change. Live simply. Love generously. Speak truthfully. Work diligently. And even if you fall short, keep going. Keep growing.
Awake every morning and do your best to follow this daily TO-DO list:
Credit: Marc And Angel