Ever feel like you just can’t win?
Try as you may, you feel like you’re climbing up a mountain that’s throwing avalanches, windstorms, snow, and every natural fucking disaster your way to slow you down. How do you see the bright side of things? How do you go to sleep at night?
I think there there’s a skill in hiding pain and manifesting your own happiness. I’m not one for vulnerability, in fact, I despise people seeing me at my weakest. I’ve learned to compartmentalize events in my brain and focus on the good. This tactic has benefited me because I can say that I’m happy most of them time (or at least try to be). Here’s some surefire ways to say a big fuck you to bad jew-jew when things are not going your way.
1. Focus on art
If you’re not an artist, it’s probably a good time to pick up an art form. If you can’t draw a pen and make it look like a pen, whatever; just call it abstract. Art isn’t to gain validation of any kind; it is the purest form of self expression. Whenever I sit down and paint a project, I don’t just sit there and start painting freehand. I have my sketchbook and I just doodle whatever I feel like. From then, I can use different ways to color. My projects take 1-2 days using markers or Adobe Illustrator and about 2-3 weeks if it’s an acrylic on canvas. People with Alzheimer’s are always reported coming up with amazing art because that is their way of connecting and using self-dialogue. As you can see, managing a project requires planning, and planning requires concentration. If you are spending a chunk of your morning just focused on a project, it takes your mind off of any stressful situations you may be in. This doesn’t have to pertain specifically to painting. Your art therapy could be music, dancing, doing makeup, building, singing, starting a blog; the possibilities are endless.
2. One and two and three and four and get them sit ups right…
There are a lot of benefits to working out. You lose weight, you gain muscle, and it lowers your risks of cancer, metabolic diseases, and depression, to name a few. If you are in a rut, you are experiencing symptoms close to depression or anxiety. It’s why I always tell people to go exercise. You gain more energy and you feel better about yourself when you’re done. When I go to the gym, I work hard. I kick my own ass and am sweating buckets by the time I leave the gym. However, if I’m upset, it is much harder to get myself pumped to go exercise. In that aspect, I completely empathize when people say it’s not that easy. All I wanna do is lay in bed, watch Netflix marathons, and probably gain 10 pounds. I can’t be at the gym and completely focus on my workout sets. So mentally, I have to force myself to go on a walk or hike to counteract all of the depressive symptoms I’m experiencing. Having a dog is an added bonus because that animal depends on you to give it necessary exercise. So I always take my dog hiking or to the park if I’m not feeling the gym. Any exercise is better than no exercise.
3. Clean out your closet
Okay, I think my intro titles starting to sound like a bad remix of millennium rap songs. I apologize. In all seriousness, cleaning out my closet does make me happier. Why? Because I’m getting rid of shorts I haven’t worn in 4 years that also probably don’t fit me, tops I have never worn, and shoes that are out of style (Jeffrey Campbell Night Walk with spikes, anyone?). Also, the great thing about cleaning out your closet is what you do with the items you don’t want. I donate most of my unwanted things to GoodWill or Planet Aid. Goodwill is one of those companies that I want to donate to because they provide community outreach to low-income families, which holds a dear place in my heart for personal reasons. Planet Aid is just out of convenience for me; they have bins around every neighborhood that you can just easily drive by and drop your bags off. One person’s trash is another person’s treasure. For my designer items, I like to sell them. I like to sell them on my own, whether it’s through my social media or eBay, because I take home most of the profits. If I’m too lazy or I’m having trouble selling certain items, I’ll go to consignment stores, primarily Crossroads or Wasteland. An organized closet and extra money to buy new clothes with it? Sounds like a happy win-win to me.
4. Go on an adventure
When I’m sad or stressed, I tend to stay home often, so that’s always my tell with my friends and family. When I am feeling myself to my core, I love going on adventures. I think when you’re in a funk, it’s important to mentally make yourself do things that you normally do when you’re happy. I love paddle boarding and hiking. I love going on short road trips to a nice scenery and exploring new cities. If you’re more of a homebody, set a goal for yourself to go to the beach more often or drive two extra hours to a new city. Take small steps and then work your way up to bigger adventures.
5. Surround yourself with people who make you happy
This can be friends and family, or it could be complete strangers. I have a small tight-knit group of friends that I know I can always call and forget my worries. I have a great relationship with my parents and can talk to them about almost anything. Yet, for me, strangers tend to make me happier. I like having deep conversations with people who I don’t know and have zero mutual friends. I have the best conversations with complete fucking strangers. I think it’s why I love to travel so much. I can’t discredit my friends and family though, and for most of you, your best friends are going to be the people you surround yourself with when you’re down. Do fun things with them, but don’t depend on them. Creating your happiness is being at ease with yourself on your own while your friends help you up.
What are your ways of creating happiness or getting yourself out of a funk?