Days Like This

July 30th, 2011 | Posted by Alison Spath in Healthy Habits

Yeah, there’ll be days like this.  Mom was right.

Cucumber Slices on Eyes

(why yes, that cucumber did come from the CSA share. thank you for noticing.)

Your Thoughts are Very Powerful

We all inevitably have times in our lives when we’re feeling less than stellar.  The next time you’re laying there with cucumber slices on your eyes because you’ve had a tough day – consider the fact that the thoughts that you think and the emotions that you feel are very closely tied.

Have you ever been somewhere completely harmless but are feeling just dreadful?

you’re at work and thinking about the person who shouted at you in traffic

you’re washing dishes and stewing about an argument you had with your partner

you’re driving in the car and worrying about how much money is in your bank account

If the thoughts you are thinking are unrelated to your current surroundings and situation – notice how powerful your thoughts are and the way they influence how you feel.

Stay Present

When you are physically safe but find yourself being swept away by your emotions – that’s when it’s time to STOP.  If you are feeling sad or angry or frustrated but can’t do anything at that very moment about whatever it is that has you upset – stop thinking about it.

Take a moment to ground yourself in the present moment.  Close your eyes.  Feel the air on your skin.  Hear the sounds around you.  Focus on your breath.

The only thing we ever truly have is this present moment.  Right here.  Right now.  Both the past and the future exist only in our minds.  Yes, the future will eventually be the present moment – but until then?  The future is only a thought.

That’s not to say that we can’t think about the past or plan for the future – it’s when you find yourself getting wrapped up and carried off by thoughts of what might happen tomorrow or what happened yesterday that it’s time to bring your attention back to the present moment.

Otherwise – it’s an ugly cycle.  You think thoughts that make you feel bad.  You feel bad so your mind brings more harmful thoughts.  And “harmful” is exactly right.  They are called feelings because you feel them.  Your feelings are a physical manifestation of the thoughts running through your head.  Stop thinking harmful thoughts and start thinking helpful ones to begin to feel better right now.

You gotta check yo self before you wreck yo self.  Ice Cube was right.

Break the Cycle

Exercise and the ensuing endorphin rush can almost always help snap me out that thought-emotion downward spiral.  Pampering and personal grooming can be very comforting too.  Go get in the shower.  Take a bath.  Push your cuticles back.  Clean out your closet.  Stay out of the kitchen if emotional eating gets you into trouble.  (grab your cucumber and run!)  Listen to a really good song.  Watch or read something that makes you laugh to help reset your head and get out of your funk.

Finding something to do in the present moment can be one technique to help distract yourself from worrying about the past or the future.  Get up and get busy and get out of the cycle so you can move on with your day in peace.

Feeling worried or anxious about the things we have no control over are a waste of time and energy.  There will always be events and people in your life that you can’t control – but you can control the way that you think and therefore have more control over the way that you feel and react – and ultimately, the way that you live your life.

And with that leftover cucumber after you cut out your two eye slabs?  Go make cucumber water.  You know I’m right.

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