If you know me or are even a little familiar with this blog, you know I’m a look-for-the-bright-side kind of girl. Make gratitude lists. Always find the positive in every situation. Choose the good. And so on.
It’s taken me many years to develop this lens and I’ve worked very hard to build the glass-half-full or even the I’m-just-grateful-to-have-a-glass mindset.
But what do you do when you get to the end of a truly lousy, no good, uncommonly crappy kind of day? The kind of day that started like the small, irritating buzz of a mosquito in your ear but eventually snowballed into a swarm of mosquitos that envelop you in the way that dust swirls around Pigpen in Peanuts. What then?
I’ve discovered that sometimes you just have to sit with it. Take a deep breath and acknowledge it. Shake hands with it. Let it be a lousy, no good, uncommonly crappy kind of day. Call it what it is. Because forcing yourself to give it another name isn’t helpful or fair to yourself. Not to mention that it is dishonest and only compounds the frustration.
We were given a wide range of emotions for a reason. To immediately dismiss the negative ones is to dismiss being human. It’s not a character flaw to feel upset, hurt or even angry when we meet a bump in the road. To allow ourselves to be governed by these feelings is another story altogether.
But to allow ourselves to sit quietly, reflect on the day and the people in it, examine our reactions and feeling associated with it and say, “Yeah… that genuinely sucked…”,…well, that is actually the ultimate form of self-compassion and self-care. It’s honest.
The mosquitos will eventually quiet down. Pigpen’s dust will settle. And we will see more clearly that a bad day does not make for a bad life.
Hello, today. Yes, we met. And, oh by the way, you really sucked. In fact, the thoroughness of your efforts to suck were almost admirable. So I’m going to let you have this one. Not gonna try to change or sugarcoat you. You indeed sucked.
But you know what else? You’re also finished. Tomorrow is a new day. A new day with a new sunrise, a new sunset and the potential to bookend the day with beauty is coming. And you can go buzz in someone else’s ear.
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The day is over. It’s history. Nothing you can do about it. Let it go. Learn from it and try to not let it happen again. It will be a new day tomorrow with new adventures to live through.