It's Monday morning. It's dark outside. It's warm in bed. Even though you're lucky to have a cozy bedroom and a roof over your head and maybe even someone who loves you and shares this bed, or you're flying solo as I did for years--there's still this prick of "oh-shitness" that bruises your consciousness. You lift your body out of bed, considering a full week--five blank-canvas days of GOD KNOWS WHAT ahead of you--and GROAN.
SHRIEK. Moan. Whatevs. Harumph. Here we go again. Hit snooze.
But what if--just WHAT IF--you don't buy into this unspoken communal agreement we seem to have made that Monday mornings suck?
Think about it. Who said that the first day of the week has to be so against-the-current? In my last job, my Mondays entailed showing up after a Masters swim and some personal writing time, entering my communal office space to the greeting of "Who needs coffee?," rounding up the team and walking the long block of Eastlake Avenue to Louisa's for coffee and easy conversation with fun co-workers. Then we had our Monday status meeting where we laughed a bit and still let out big weary sighs about it being Monday--even though we were, in reality, having a pretty damn good time!
What if--just WHAT IF--you considered that it's far more natural to wake up on a Monday morning (and any other day) feeling good; maybe you're not excited or happy or looking-forward to what's ahead, but you can hold a flat-line feeling of neutrality and OKness. Neutral feelings are part of the healthy repertoire too--we don't have to swing from the extremes.
Don't commit to the suffer-fest
Let's consider Sisyphus. He pushed that goddamn rock up that goddamn hill over and over and over again. You could call the top of the rock the weekend and then starting all over again being his Monday. Is this hell? Is this insanity? Or is this what life looks like when you limp from weekend to weekend. (NO JUDGEMENT: I've played Sisyphus plenty of times.)
What if you put that goddamn rock down? There . . . AHHHH. It can be that easy.
This isn't about Mondays--it's about your Natural State of Well Being
For years I believed it too. That life is hard, filled with struggle. After I met my husband I noticed how often, when I mentioned something in my past, I tacked on, "I was going through a rough patch." Jesus (eye roll!) I started to wonder--why, when in the big picture I am graced with for lack of a better phrase good ingredients for a good life, I had so many "rough patches"?
Because I didn't know that my natural state was one of well being. And I was letting my thinking get me down. I had some circumstances that led to some negative thinking that snowballed into a big avalanche of sadness. This didn't have to happen.
In the last year I've come to believe that humans' home base feelings are ones like peace and clarity and love and OKness. It can be hard to believe this when, well, you look at the world and what people go through, or the fates some of us (whole countries!) get handed.
But you know what? I decided to go with it. I LIKE THIS IDEA BETTER THAN THE ALTERNATIVE. I like the idea that our natural state is one of well-being. When I look at babies and toddlers and see how content they are and how they let their emotions wash over them and change like weather. Well, Me Too!
I like believing that emotional health is our birthright, not something we have to WORK HARD to find. What if, just what if, when a bad feeling comes in, we can trust there will be plenty of other feelings coming in behind those and we just wait for the mood to change. It might not change right away, but we don't have to buy in to the fact that one seductive negative thought is the one we hang our hat on, create an identity around? It's tempting because trouble makes such a compelling story.
What if--just WHAT IF--you choose to join me and consider that your natural emotional and thinking state is one of clarity, well being, peace of mind. And when you feel otherwise you don't have to get to work managing or changing or turning things around, but trust your natural bodily intelligence is doing everything in its power to return you to a better state. When? Who knows. But it's going to change.
Does it sound too good to be true?
[Note: I'm not turning my back on the daily news -- which is really just data, information and neutral circumstances we give meaning through our thinking--but good golly it can be so powerful and hard-to-take, and some people's day to day realities are so sad I often don't quite know what to do with my good-luck life...]
Still, I'm willing to consider this well-being natural state because ... it feels really good to stop pushing the motherf*&#ing boulder up the hill day in and day out.
Some of us are signing up for elective suffering.
Why would we do this, unless we think our natural state is NOT well being?
Pick a period of time. A week or two; or how about a month! Live as if your home base feeling state is one of well being. Live as if the bad mood, anxiety, sadness and negative or perplexing thoughts that come in will move on through and something better is on its way. Live as if RESILIENCY is your birthright and a better experience is right around the corner.
Psst: Even during really bad situations, you can find at least 2 seconds where you felt OK. The warm sun, a red-breasted bird, a baby laughing, a good memory, two beautiful lines of a poem, a kiss, blue toe nails, cake for breakfast...
What kind of life do you create and experience if you are living as if your home base is emotional health?
If this seems too good, or unbelievable--or even troublesome--to imagine, let's talk about it! I'm happy to share my experience of living from this well-being default state and hear what's up for you. Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.