We’ve all had those days where we feel drained, purposeless, empty, disconnected and as though life is passing us by, while all of our hopes and dreams are on some dejected shelf in the attic of our minds, slowly being hidden from consciousness by endless dust and spider webs.
If your life had a title at this point, it might sound something like ‘The Graveyard of Dreams’ or ‘Kill Me Now’. (or maybe you’re less cryptic than me- which is a good start.)
BUTTTTTTTT… WHY? Why do we get to these places… and worst of all… WHY DO WE STAY THERE?
Maybe it’s life, maybe you need to look at your beliefs, re-evaluate who you are versus where you want to be, or maybe you need to reconnect with God?
Regardless of why, or how you ended up in this ‘funk’… I’ve come up with 3 ways to help you feel less crappy….errr crapée?… perhaps that sounds less crass *maniacal chuckle*.
1. Try something new. They say insanity is doing the same thing over and over, but expecting different results… and they were right! If you’ve been feeling demotivated, disconnected or just down right uninspired- try something you haven’t before. Do something you’ve wanted to but haven’t made steps towards. Maybe it’s new cuisine, a different genre of movie (probably not something too depressing), visit a tourist spot, or even try out a new attitude for size. We have a ton of activities available to us on this little island of Trinidad, just make the bold step of booking something and go. You may not feel like you even want to, minutes before trying whatever it is that you choose, but lead with your body and your mind will eventually follow. The hardest part of change is always the start, but believe me, it’ll be well worth your while.
2. Change up your physical environment. If you’re not employed and at home a lot, go out. Go to a nearby park, a mall, a theatre, somewhere that’s not a part of your weekly routine. If that doesn’t sound like it’ll help, change up your room or living space. For me, cleaning always helps me to feel better and the physical de-cluttering of a space provides me with a mental response where I end up feeling like I’ve de-cluttered my mind. WARNING: THIS PROCESS WILL NOT BE FUN. YOU MAY NOT WANT TO DO IT. However… you’ll thank yourself when you’re done. Who wants to clean, reorganize or leave the house after a long day, ESPECIALLY when you’ve been having a tough time? Certainly not you right? This is exactly why you should give it a try. Change is usually on the other end of trying something different. For me, I enjoy cleaning and DIY crafting, so this tip has always been my safety net. Hanging up some DIY artwork, buying a piece of art that makes me happy, or rearranging my furniture until the space feels different has been my therapy. A physical action almost ALWAYS cues a mental and emotional one. Again, do it even if you don’t feel like it, and eventually your mind (once willing) will follow.
3. Choose your battles. Everyday, you’re more than likely going to run into difficulties and challenges. You’re going to have interactions with all kinds of people. You’ll have to deal with the bigger stresses in life – like health, finances or relationship issues… and then there are the smaller stresses like difficult co-workers or ‘friends’ who don’t always rub you the right way. Throw it all together and it feels like a recipe for disaster.Life is a continuous balancing act, and often it feels like we’re closer to failure than success. HOWEVER, I’ve found that separating my situations into two distinct categories helps me to find way more success in the grand scheme of things: Important… and… Not-Important (yes, not very creative, I know). The important things are the ones that affect your future self; they create conflict regarding your future goals, and disrupt your life. The Non-Important ones are the little things you allow to get under your skin and frustrate you temporarily. These things are usually short lived, and won’t matter in a year, or ten… yet we spend time fussing over them anyway because we’re creatures of habit. For me, I try daily to decide whether my current stress, annoyance or frustration fits into either category. If it’s important – I take a deep breath and carefully try to find a way out. If it’s not important, I allow myself a few minutes to get it out of my system and redirect my focus to something else- while reminding myself ‘Aimee, it’s NOT that big of a deal. You need to stop wasting time, energy and emotions on this, and move onto something else. DO NOT REACT. I REPEAT. DO NOT REACT’. I often fail and get caught up on many insignificant issues, but when I remember to take control and give myself a timeline to either deal with the issue or just move on from it (if I have no control), it’s a breath of fresh air. You can’t win EVERY battle, but you can choose simply, to fight only the important ones.
In keeping with this blog post, and trying to swallow my own advice – I gave Tip #3 a try over the long weekend and ended up at the most northeasterly point of Trinidad… TOCO! The colours, sights and clean chilling air were so incredibly refreshing that I’m already planning another visit. I couldn’t soak in enough of the views that surrounded me, and I actually loved that I left wanting more. A change of physical environment can be so empowering, as can a change in attitude. Give it a go! You won’t regret it. I know I certainly didn’t!