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I’m in a funk! I feel down, unmotivated, unproductive, lonely. And, truth be told, I have good reason to be feeling this way. For starters, read the newspaper. There isn’t a lot of good news out there. On top of that, I’m sending my first born off to college in a few weeks. If you don’t think that’s rife with emotions, guess again. Yesterday marked the 4th anniversary of my dad’s death. That one creeps up on my out of nowhere every year. I’m just back from a month ‘sabbatical’ on the coast of Maine and re-entry is proving challenging. The summer is drawing to a close. Enough? There’s more but I won’t bore you with the details.
If you’ve been following me for long or know me well, you know that I’m not one to whine and complain. So what’s up with this downer?
The first step in shifting your attitude and mood is to acknowledge it and try to understand what is causing it. Identify what is and isn’t in your control; honor the things that cannot be changed and act on the things that you can do something about. So in my case, I can’t bring my father back but I can remember positive things about him and honor my feelings of sadness and loss. I can’t reverse the stock market slide (sorry, wish I could) but I can sit down with my husband and take a look at our finances and our spending and take some appropriate, responsible action to cut back on spending. That will give me a sense of intention and control. I can, as I’m doing here, share my feelings with others and not internalize it all and think, “I’m the only one.” And I can support others to turn their attitudes around too. I can be grateful for the wonderful 18 years I have had with my son living at home and be proud of him and us and be excitedly curious about who he will become as he launches into this next chapter of his life. I can look around at my friends and neighbors and collect evidence that it all works out and they live through the separation process. I can focus on the good fortune I do have and show gratitude because there are so many people in the world who are in far worse situations than I. I can, above all, be gentle with myself and keep moving forward at the pace that I can, confident in what history can tell us: “this too shall pass.”
I’d love to hear from you, how do you shake your funk or help others to do so?