Spring is here! And with it comes that strange seasonal switch-up that’s not quite as bad as the summer-to-winter-SAD but still takes some adjusting. It’s getting warmer, we have things to do and now we don’t have the weather as an excuse not to do them… *panics* Tack on general life-stressors and you’ve got bad cocktail. Hard days that turn into hard weeks, or hard months are The Worst.
For this month’s mindfulness post, (a little late, sorry!) I wanted to share my tips for getting through The Hard Times, whatever those times may be. I’m not a physician/counselor/health professional by any means, but I can tell you that I’ve used these tips in my own life and they work.
…to the Happy Chill Good Time Vibes playlist on Spotify. Yes, that’s really what it’s called! I don’t remember when or how I came across this playlist, but the music is exactly what the title suggests: light and upbeat but not in an in-your-face way. I have found a lot of great artists through this playlist, too, some of which have appeared on my monthly playlists in past posts. Music helps you get into a better mood, and being mindful of what you listen to can have a big impact.
…something inspiring. For me, this means anything fictional, even better if it’s something I already own. I re-read books all the time, and when I’m feeling especially down, re-reading something I know I love is like visiting an old friend. I would even recommend reading some kid-lit! Anne of Green Gables is one of my go-to’s.
…something healthy. If everything but everything has gone wrong and all feels hopeless, make a point to eat something healthy for your next meal. It’s a small thing, but you will feel better for doing something good for yourself. Bonus: you can check off “eating healthy” for the day.
It doesn’t even have to be a whole meal, for example I love eating berries and yogurt. Strawberries or blueberries or blackberries or all three, chopped up in plain vanilla yogurt is easy, healthy and filling and makes me feel good inside.
…The Office. Or New Girl. Or something else lighthearted that you enjoy. This is not to say that you should hunker down and watch something on Netflix for hours and hours because you are not trying to avoid the problem. But an hour or two of distraction with something fun, especially something comedy related, might just give you the perspective you need.
…if possible. Sometimes when we’re dealing with something especially tough, we feel drained at the end of the day because all of our energy went to that one thing, that one problem, or that one chore that was especially tough. Then, all you can do is collapse on the couch or in bed. But if your mind is still racing even when your body is still, it might be a good time to go for a walk, or head to the gym.
I have said it before because I really think it’s true, but working out even for just thirty minutes helps me clear my head in a way that other activities sometimes just can’t. And again as with eating, it’s a positive activity that you do for yourself that let’s you check one more thing off your list.
…by practicing mindfulness techniques such as slowing down, breathing, and staying present. Being mindful is not about distracting yourself from what’s going on around you, but rather recognizing it for what it is. During especially anxious times, try the grounding method to stay present.
What About You?
What are your tips for getting through tough times? Tell me in the comments!
*top photo via Pinterest and does not belong to me