Photo cred: Ken Lilly
It’s funny that as I was mentally planning this post over the last few days, I was thinking, “Nope, January’s not done with me yet!” These words are coming at ya from under three blankets with a 101 degree fever. I woke up this morning feeling… funky. However, I was determined to start February with my best foot forward, so the husband and I made a fairly complex elimination diet grocery list first thing this morning, the order of my ‘Lifestyle Advisor.’ While we were at Kroger, (which could possibly be higher on my shit list than January) I started to feel kind of achy, but had not yet put two and two together and blamed it on being on my feet and not having eaten breakfast. When food did not relieve this pain, I took a nap and woke up feeling pretty badly. And so, here I am, literally so impressed with that fickle bitch, January, and her salty parting gift. And I have for sure decided January is a female as I don’t know many males as vindictive. (That is mostly a joke, so let’s laugh and move on.)
January has not been particularly brutal, really. It’s the same level of annoying work stuff/life stuff/personal stuff that goes on year round, just with the added bonus of cabin fever, and the almost genetic predisposition, so it seems, to just loathe January. When I get this way, I fall into a really bad habit of straight up not taking care of myself. Not like binge drinking or anything! But definitely binge couching, eating, Youtubing, and getting zero sleep/exercise, which is probably as detrimental as binge drinking. And 100% the reason I feel like crap. Some combination of these things and the inability to emotionally handle anything, usually finds me in a place of total exasperation and causes me to lash out at people and situations that I could usually at least muddle through.
This week was the climax and breaking point of all of the above so I’ve done my fair share of crying and talking mad shit about people I actually like. I even said to Kyle last night, over half of a large delivery pizza, (binge eating ftw) “I feel bad because I was openly annoyed today with people who I maybe only imagined were being mean to me.” A slump can do funny things to the mind, and while I’m always an advocate for standing up for yourself, I also believe you should only do that if there’s reason to. No sense in laying down any unnecessary laws. So now, my frustration has melted away into guilt, and I’m not fully prepared to deny that karma is at play with this fever right now.
When I have the time to actually clear my mind, which has been a rarity the past few weeks, juggling a bunch of different things professionally and personally, I am able to find some calm, and I thought those techniques would be a nice thing to share.
Firstly, focusing in and being mindful of what I’m doing, whether I love or hate it, gives me an incredible sense of peace. Last Sunday, I got up and focused intently on cleaning the house and finishing tasks one by one. This one by one method tends to help me in all things I do, and adds a clarity to life that I think our generation sometimes misses out on while we’re multitasking a million things at any given time.
There is also so much healing in a good book; I’m currently reading Anna Kendrick’s Scrappy Little Nobody. (It’s loosely based on my life. Jk. But really.) While I love watching movies and tv, reading is really the only thing that ensures I’ll put my phone down, tuck all my concerns into the back pocket of my brain, and transport myself into the world of another person’s problems! I’m kidding, there are tons of happy/sad/thrilling/sappy books to immerse yourself in. I say pick a genre you love, and run with it!
Be thankful. I sometimes find myself so consumed by the less-than-perfects, that I forget to be grateful for all the wonderful things staring me right in the face. Like a caring husband, parents who would drop anything for me, the cutest cat on planet earth, and friends who have my dang back when we’re all getting Melania Trump’d on the internet. (Also a joke, but really I love my friends. Even the one who confirmed that my dream of her ending our friendship over my casual love for Amy Poehler was not out of the realm of possibility, hahahaha.) Be thankful in any way that works for you, whether that be prayer, a daily list of the good in your life, or just a thankful mindset. It helps.
Lastly, give yourself a break. I’ve spent all of January not only overly worried about myself, but worried and guilt-ridden over how my funk has affected my loved ones and even not-so-loved ones. Whether it’s missing an important email at work, or forgetting something at the grocery store, or just being too exhausted to deal with something, cut yourself a break. Acknowledge that you’ve made a mistake, address it in the best way possible, and then move the fuck on. Everyone makes mistakes, says things they don’t mean, stumbles into a slump, barely survives January (draaamaaaa). Give yourself the benefit of the doubt that you would give to anyone else in your life.
We’re almost through it, people!
xoxo FebisforLovers (not a Valentines pun)
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