I did not want to read my homework assignments. Self-improvement books aren’t my thing. But, what I know is this: The methods that I was using to get myself back on track and Feel Better weren’t working.
So, I’ve been a good little student doing my reading. I came across one nugget in Finding Your Own North Star that I discussed the other day with a friend going through her own trials. We both found it helpful:
When you are facing a major life change or dealing with anything particularly difficult, it’s important to allow yourself the time to process and grieve that.
I am so good at sad. I love my music and movies and can’t work myself up into a nice big, wallowing pout in no time. It seems counterproductive (not to mention unattractive, given that the only cry I have is the ugly cry).
It doesn’t have to be. Beck actually suggests utilizing tools like music and writing feelings down as a means to access the emotions that you need to process.
Now, here’s the step that I (and many of us) miss: Schedule time for it, just like you do anything else. And when that time is done, she says to basically “put it back in its box until the next time.”
Walk away from it.
In other words, it takes time to work through something. And it is work. You have to give yourself what you need, but you don’t let the problem overtake your life.
Beyond the bigger issues we face in life, I am looking forward to trying this with the smaller day-to-day frustrations. Too often, I let the little junk throughout the day – and prior days as the week goes on – determine my mood.
I need some practice. How about you?