Have an “off” day?

Have an “off” day?

Do you ever wake up and think something just feels different?  For some reason things seem a little foggy, have to think harder to get going, energy is low, and you just can’t get yourself perking?

Well, the science has a lot to say about those days but the bottom line comes down to chemistry in your brain.  The brain is a miracle machine that runs everything in your body and most of it works pretty automatically.  But we can tell it what to do.  For example, you don’t have to tell your brain to breathe.  We fall asleep and the brain keeps us breathing.  We get too busy to think about anything but we are still breathing.  But, what if you want to control your breathing?  You can.  You can hold your breath and swim underwater. You can breathe deeply and slowly and the chemistry changes to calm and relax your system.   What else is automatic? A lot of bodily functions like digestion and heart rate are adjusted mostly unconsciously.  Can you affect it? You bet!  If you get stressed and upset what happens to your digestive system, and heart rate for that matter?

So what’s the point you are wondering?  The point is that while there are a lot of things that your brain does by itself, other things need your input to go the way you want it.  You get to choose, you get to change the chemistry, you get to control a whole lot of how you feel.

So then, if you feel bad a lot of the time, how do you fix that?  Here are some tips:

  1. Introspection-sit quietly and meditatively and try to hear what your brain is processing. May sound silly if you have never tried it but once you get really uiet with yourself, listen to the messages you hear from yourself.  Does it tell you that you are sick?  Wounded? Not worthy? Angry? Grieving? Sad?  Make a list of what you hear.
  2. Self-affirmations-once you have an idea of what is bothering, start changing those messages. Write some scripts for yourself.  Here are some examples:

I am a good person.  I am worthy of trust, respect , and love.  I love other people and am willing to make an effort to show it. I am human and make mistakes but I learn from them and have empathy for other’s weaknesses. Today, I will operate with compassion for everyone I see regardless of how they treat me.  I can and will overcome anything that tries to steal my joy because I have hope that brings me peace and purpose.

  1. Balance-everything in life should have balance. Sometimes it’s hard to figure out where your balance is.  Choose hard work and practice.  Balance does not come from laziness.  Choose healthy habits in diet, exercise, water intake, endurance building physically, mentally and spiritually.  When any of these begin to tip, pay attention to the messages your mind and body give you.

If some of these tips don’t help, consider reaching out.  We all have times when we’ve let the chemistry and the balances get out of range and we need someone else to help us problem solve.  Sometimes, it’s all inward, sometimes its outward, i.e. a troubled teen, an ill spouse or elder, issues common to Veterans, or sometimes the impact of disability.  Regardless of where it comes from, reach out.  Don’t let anything steal your joy.  There is hope!  It’s what we are all about!  Contact us!