Feeling down? Do this.

sad frenchie

We all have “those days.” You know, the days when you want to smack someone. Days when you’re just crabby. Sad. Days when life seems too much, and you just want to crawl under your sheets — or even under your bed — and sleep.

Except, you really can’t. You have bills to pay. Phone calls to make. Deadlines to meet.

Or maybe you’re just tired, or sick. Or the weather outside is gloomy, and you’re affected.

Whatever your reason, if you feel like a big blob of nothing today, here are some tips to lift you up:

  1. Breathe. Take 30 seconds, take a very deep breath, and pay attention to your body. Don’t judge the sensation as good or bad…if you’re cold, be cold. If you’re itchy, be itchy. None of this is either bad or good. It just is.
  2. Work out. I hate working out and as much as I don’t want to admit it, working out is helpful to managing our moods. So, pick an exercise — ONE exercise — and do it for 10 minutes. That’s it. Just 10 minutes. I’ve started using the cattle bell: I lift it 75 times (25*3) and I’m done.
  3. Write. Take a notebook or a piece of paper, and write down anything and everything that comes to mind. Don’t judge it, don’t even pay attention to what is. Just write it down.
  4. Write more. Write 10 things you’re grateful for. 5 is easy. 10 gets your mind working. Write 10 and watch your mood change.
  5. Call a friend. Talk to a friend who you know will make you feel better by just talking to you. (If you have a friend like that, add them to the gratitude list.)
  6. Meditate, read a poem, or say a prayer. This takes only 5 mins. Sit down. Close your eyes. Breathe. That’s it. I like to read Invictus as a part of my meditation ritual and light some incense.
  7. Smell something good. Smell is a powerful sense, and smelling something good, a smell we like, can be transformative. Light an incense or a candle, spray a cologne or perfume, or even grab a piece of fruit and take a few good smells. You’ll feel better.
  8. Give yourself a hug. Literally, hug yourself. Tightly. It’s ok.
  9. Give someone else a hug. Hugging has scientifically been proven to alter our moods. The key is to hold the hug for 30+ seconds. (Google it.) Meanwhile, hug someone — your dog, your partner, your friend, a coworker.
  10. Read: this blog, something else, a quote, an old email, … anything that will get your brain working.

The problem with doing all these things is that when we feel bad, we don’t want to do anything. And that’s OK. But if you don’t want to do anything, then don’t — BUT, don’t forget to shut your brain off, too! You cannot say, “oh, I don’t feel like doing anything,” while your brain is racing. That means your brain is working overtime. Refocus it on something else, or shut it down.

Finally, remember: no matter what anyone says (including the voice in your head), you are good, you’re loved, and you’re beautiful. I’m not trying to sound cheesy, but it’s true: you have billions of blood cells fighting for you daily to keep you alive. That’s a lot of love right there.

Every day is a new opportunity to start anew. Your past does not define you. Your future cannot hurt you. Only your present matters. Take a moment, and feel it.

Hope you’re already feeling better!