This morning I began writing 3 different posts. Different, yet similar. I woke up this morning feeling low. I blame the pregnancy hormones and too much Halloween candy. Yesterday was not much better. Feelings of despair, loneliness, and sadness fill me for reasons that I do not understand. When in these moments, it is so tough to see things from a different light. Therefore my 3 posts began with that element of despair and hope, joy or anything close to what a beautiful alarm might be, was not present.
The difficulty of getting out of those moments is underestimated. Once in them, a way out seems far, distant, and close to impossible. Whether the feelings come because of certain circumstances in your life, or whether they come for unexplained reasons - they are present, and they can consume and overtake you.
Last night and this morning I pushed myself. I did not want to let myself wallow in that misery. For what good would this do? For myself, or for those around me?
Perhaps you woke up this morning with similar feelings, perhaps you've felt this way for a while, or perhaps you will later on this week or this month. Here are some steps that I strive to take when feeling so low.
1. Pray. Where does your worth come from? Where does your focus and purpose lie? Pray for God to remind you of this. Pray for WISDOM throughout this low moment, day, week, or month. (James 1:5)
2. Take a small break. If this is coming in the evening, go to bed early. You may wake up with a new perspective. If it is in the morning, allow yourself to take it easy a bit more. But don't allow yourself to do this all day -- give yourself 15 minutes, 30 minutes, or no more than an hour. Dragging it out will only bring you further into possible self pity.
3. Re-Assess your day (or week.. or month). Perhaps today you simply can't do all that you had planned. Or perhaps you need to fill your day up more. Re-asess and push yourself. Monday mornings are my usual grocery shopping and clean up from the weekend mornings. Today, even simply thinking about accomplishing those brought me more into my misery and loneliness. So instead I changed my day, I contacted a friend, and soon enough will be meeting her for coffee. This gave me a whole new perspective on my day. My spirits were lifted...while maybe only a tiny bit, it was a beginning.
4. Tell Someone. We need support and we need community. Reach out to someone - anyone. By going through this low moment on your own will only pull you further into those deep, despairing thoughts. By reaching out and speaking of it, you are finding strength and support with others. Do make sure the person or people you tell are not people who will simply pity you but someone who will comfort and support, and then also help push you to get through.
5. Get moving. Sitting at my computer or on my phone is tempting when I feel low. But it helps nothing. Force yourself to get up and moving...whether it is to simply put a load of laundry in, make your bed, or go for a short walk..once you start it will be easier to continue throughout the day.
These 5 actions are truly helping me get through this low time right now. Maybe I will only feel this for a day...maybe it will last for a week or a month...But by making a plan and working at it I am freeing myself from the danger of self pity and a 'woe is me' attitude.
****I especially think about this for the other stay-at-home moms out there. We can get in these times and moments and have no one to reach out to or talk to during the day other than our little humans :). The truth is - having no one is a lie we are telling ourselves. Push yourself to initiate and bring yourself out of these moments. Read my post on Overcoming the Stay At Home Mommy Blues for more ideas to help you get out of this.