You know how sometimes you just have one of those days? It happens to the best of us. It happens to the best of us even in our best times. One. Of. Those. Days.
I mean, some days are all sunshine and clean air and clean food and yoga and singing to the sky. Some days are really like that, you know? They just roll out all easy and clear, like we were meant for all of this, meant to love and live. (That's because we are, but nevertheless...) Some days aren't like that. Some days start off crooked, with headaches or cloudy brains or sluggish limbs. Some days are endless hours of cravings for white bread, pastries, more pastries, anything sweet. I've even eaten a pack of peanut m&m's for lunch on one of those days because I couldn't muster enough care to really eat something good for me. Those m&m's really hit the spot, though, I tell you what.
I've noticed sometimes we like to grasp wildly for reasons and justifications for the one-of-those-days days. Mercury retrograde. PMS. Not enough sleep. Too much sleep. Sensitivity. The moon and cosmos. And so on and so on. The bottom line, though, is that no matter what happens with us and the world, there will always be those days. It's okay. We don't need to justify them. They happen. Shit happens. But you know what else?
And then we have better days.
Here is a list of a few things that help me a little bit when I'm having one of those days. I thought I'd share it with you just in case it helps you out sometime.
- Surrender - I've found that this is one of the most effective ways to get through these difficult days. As somewhat of a fighter by nature (not physically, just in the way I'm determined to get through stuff), I find myself fighting it hard when I'm having an off day. That gets me nowhere, fast. The day continues on as it will, and if I fight it I fall into all sorts of guilt traps and resistance-stress. I've learned that letting it be what it is makes it flow with more ease and grace, even if it's not always pleasant. My self-conversation with surrender and acceptance is along the lines of "well, there's always tomorrow."
- Exercise - Duh. This one's hard, especially when we're feeling blue. But that's when it's most important. It doesn't have to be anything major, but I've found that moving my body can lift the pressure of The Funk up off my shoulders just enough so that new oxygen infiltrates my brain and body and things feel a little different. Stretching on the floor works. Sometimes I just jump rope for a few minutes. I've recently started riding my bike again and that works all sorts of wonders. Even just doing a backbend or some downward dog will help. That upside-down thing really works.
- Water - I'm not gonna lie, I have a hard time EATING WELL on these days, and so I focus more on drinking a lot of water rather than stressing about clean food. Higher water intake makes me feel like I'm eating well even if I'm not. That being said, eat well if you can! I'm just being realistic with myself and on these days I sometimes feel like depriving myself of treats would just bring me to tears.
- Tears - Speaking of tears, let's cry! Can you cry? Man, sometimes that shit can work wonders. If you need to cry and can't, try reading a super sad passage from a book or watching a tear-jerking chick flick. I'm a fan of cry-aids when needed.
- Rest - OMG. I cannot stress this one enough. Rest as much as you can on these days. We all need more rest. It's true. We do a lot of things and rest not as often as maybe we need to. This brings us back to the surrender piece. There will be more time for productivity. You will be forgiven for a day of uselessness. Use the uselessness to invest in yourself and make yourself better for the new day ahead of you. Let your body sleep and rest and let your mind forget the to-do lists, the long lists of impossible tasks. Grant yourself the gift.
- Indulge - I think that on these days, a balanced indulgence is important. I could say that by exercising, drinking water, and eating lots of vegetables, you will feel better. But you know what? I'm not sure that's true. I think some days are murky no matter what we do, and so finding the sweet spot of acceptance (without wallowing) is key. For me, allowing myself to indulge in rest, books, movies, or certain foods, can be really helpful getting me through these days. Sometimes things feel hard, and one of our great human blessings is the abundance of ways that we can ease things through pleasure. There's food and sweets, hugs and snugs, sleep and naps, walks in the wilderness, swimming in water, drawing on paper, mixing a bowl of batter. Whatever your simple pleasures are -- the ones that bring light -- use them and let them carry you through to the other side.