Towards the end of last week, we both found ourselves in a ‘bad’ mood. When all we mostly see on social media is everyone else having a good time, it’s easy to get hard on ourselves when it happens. But the reality is, everyone gets into a ‘bad’ mood every so often. Fortunately for us, they don’t come around too often anymore, but when they do – boy do they suck! We spent a couple of hours wallowing in the unpleasant emotions… rejecting the sensations and wishing them to pass. It’s funny how they get you each time, isn’t it?! Before you know it, they have swallowed you up into a deep dark hole and tricked you into thinking you’ll never get out again. We reminded each other how unhelpful this particular response of rejecting a bad mood is, and rather took out our mindfulness toolbox instead. And wow did it help!
So we thought we’d share with you this week our centred approach to a bad mood so that you can use it too the next time you find yourself a little off-centre…
- Identify what has triggered you into this state: something someone did or said, a Facebook post you came across, a text message (or lack of one), excess traffic etc.
- Acknowledge what factors are affecting your current adaptability to this trigger; lack of sleep, hunger, a looming deadline, a sick family member etc.
- Radically accept the current state that you are in. Then go one step further and actually choose to be having your experience right now, for it is often in these challenging situations where real growth and transformation can occur.
- Observe your thoughts as mere electrochemical reactions in your brain and notice your emotions as pure physical sensations inside your body – and stop buying into their meaning.
- Remind yourself that these thoughts and emotions are in fact transient and will pass through you eventually, and then experience compassion for yourself in this moment.
- Take appropriate and considered action, not as a mere reaction to your past circumstance, but rather drawing from a place of future optimism and potential.
- Whenever you realise yourself wallowing in your bad mood once more, gently (and compassionately) return your attention back to this process.
Good luck! And remember that we are always here to help guide you through the process and get you centred once again!