I’m going to be honest with you guys. This week has been shit. Changing gears is hard, especially when you’re shifting from 3 weeks in the Mediterranean and an epic week in Glastonbury, to the rat race of London, hustling for a new work contract and getting back into the daily grind.
The post-holiday blues had me not wanting to get out of bed and my sleep was all over the place from being stressed out about working. I felt teary and depressed, spending literally hours scrolling mindlessly through Facebook and Instagram desperate for some form of escapism from where I was now.
Yet for me, I know that when I’m in this head space it can easily turn into a slippery slope if I don’t keep on top of it. Wallowing in self pity and ruminating over and over about how unhappy I am can turn pretty nasty, very quickly. However my whole experience of London has taught me so much about myself, and I now know how to process my shit quickly and lift myself back up. And this week has been testament to that.
By implementing these three things over the last few days, I have gone from zero smiles to finally feeling normal and happy again, and I hope that by sharing these I could potentially help someone else out there who may also be doing it rough this week like I was.
Firstly, sit in your shit
Emotions are just energy moving through the body, but problems start to happen when we don’t let the energy just move on and out. Instead we hang onto them for dear life, whether that’s compulsively ruminating over something or someone and how it makes us feel, or the alternative of bottling it up by band-aiding over it through escapism with social media, alcohol, sex or partying. Unfortunately these have become the social norm and we as a society are expected to be rational humans all the time, both in public and in private, which is neither healthy nor realistic.
Sitting in your shit means that you turn off all distractions and you give 100% of your attention to everything you’re feeling right now. Allow yourself to feel angry, sad, depressed, whatever emotion it is, give it your all. If it means balling your eyes out, punching and screaming into a pillow, or staring at a wall for 3 hours, do it for as long as you need to and do it without censoring, without guilt, shame, or over analysing. Even if it means coming back to it the next day.
Then journal to process your shit
I’m a huge fan or writing things down to get clarity on the jumbled mess of words flying around my head. Whether it’s free writing in a diary or laptop, mind mapping, bullet journalling or blogging, getting your thoughts on paper lays it all out for you. I’ll write without censoring myself, caring about grammar (which challenges the perfectionist in me!) write in bullet points, pros and cons and also practicing gratitude. We need to also validate whats working in our lives along with whats not working, and allow ourselves to have both. When we give ourselves permission to have both the good and bad stuff in our lives, then we gives ourselves the freedom to process it.
3. Get back to basics
Exercise, healthy eating and sleep are paramount to mental health and getting those endorphins flowing, especially when times are a little tougher. The LAST thing I felt like doing this week was going to the gym, but after a few days of sitting in my shit it was time to get myself up and moving. And I hated it. I felt like crap afterwards, but the next day I did it again. When I was tired, I had a nap. And when I just wanted chocolate, I made sure I forced something healthy in first before indulging. Eventually the persistence in moving and nourishing my body eventually paid off its dividends and a week later I feel much better. The best thing is to start small, and the most important thing is to stick with it.
Following these three things this week has made me feel so much better and I’m finally back to feeling like I can handle this next chapter of more work and less play. More importantly, I know that this next chapter will end soon, and another will begin in August, when we are back travelling again.
If you’re feeling like things are going to be a little tough this week, follow these steps, then book something in for yourself to look forward to again.