Thursday, February 24, 2011

Rainy Days

Listening to the drip, drip, dripping of the rain on the flashing outside my office window, looking at the grey skies, and feeling a tad helpless to change a plethora of circumstances that are beyond my control, my instinct today is to curl up in bed, pull the covers over my head and hibernate until these dreary days are over.  Ever been there?  Sounds good, no?

Realistically, however, I know that just as dreary days cycle into sunnier ones, out-of-control circumstances do, too.  Hibernating won't change the weather any more than it will change my outlook or circumstances.  What I DO know is that by putting one foot in front of the other (we "What About Bob" fans call those 'baby-steps'...), getting dressed, putting on the make-up and doing the hair and forcing one's self out into the world can work wonders to realign the focus, getting it off of self and surroundings, and onto life in the "outside world".

On these days, it helps to remember to:
1.  Feed yourself well.  Remember that our tendency when feeling "down" is to reach for something creamy, soft and sweet.  Sugar actually causes you to feel hungrier soon after eating it, than you would have, had you not eaten at all...  Instead, reach for a healthy alternative to that muffin, bagel or candy bar:  raw nuts, a bowl of warming steel-cut oats with cinnamon, some soup made with pureed beans.

2.  Practice some pampering.  Paint your toenails, linger in a warm bath, get a massage (if at all possible).  When you feel the most "alone", taking time to indulge can be most rewarding.

3.  Get moving.  Even when you don't feel like going from one room to the next, force yourself out to the gym (calling on a friend to "force" you there can help), or even to the mall for some "therapeutic" shopping (as long as you set a budget, and a non-negotiable amount of time that you MUST walk while there).

4.  Meet a friend.  Social interaction has been shown to not only boost mood, but immune function too!

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