Sunday night, I fell asleep full of excitement about the start of a new week and looking forward to more opportunities and possibilities. Then, I woke up. The moment I opened my eyes, I felt like something was “off”today, as I felt exhausted, somewhat achy, and a bit nauseous. After being sick on two different occasions last month, I immediately became frustrated at the thought of being sick yet again, and I could feel a bad mood settling in. I wasn’t running a fever and determined that I was not sick enough to miss work, so, despite the negative physical and emotional feelings that greeted me, I decided that I would intentionally choose to turn this rocky start around, lest it adversely impact me and everyone else around me. This Monday may not have gone as planned, but I made the necessary adjustments and made the most of it by doing what I could to help myself and others throughout the day.
In order to embrace the fresh start that the new day and the new week offered me, I focused on the physical, emotional, mental, and spiritual aspects of myself and did at least one thing to nurture and support each area. I may not have felt well enough to exercise, but I was able to make healthy food and drink choices all day, took my medication, vitamins, and supplements, and snuck in a catnap before dinner. To combat the frustration and bad mood, I lit one of my favorite candles at work, used positive self-talk when negative thoughts entered my mind and unkind words were on the tip of my tongue, stayed present in the moment, rather than focusing on the past or worrying about the future, and soaked in a nice hot bath to soothe my aches and reduce my stress at the end of the day. I read a book and perused the newspaper to stimulate myself mentally, and I prayed and read a passage from a spiritual book to feed my baby soul. All of these small things created a sense of balance, and it helped the light to overtake the dark. I still may not be feeling 100% better, but how I feel as I end the day is a vast improvement compared to how I felt when this day began. May tomorrow be even better.
Too often when I feel out of sorts in one or more areas of my life, I expect the rest of the world to understand this imbalance and cater to my needs and wants, and when that does not happen, I can be impatient and grouchy and lash out at those in my path. As I become more aware of how my thoughts, words, and actions impact not only myself, but other people in my life, I am able to work on how to reach out to others to help them, instead of take my frustrations out on them. I try to speak kindly and honestly to others and to treat people with kindness and respect on a daily basis, but on a day when I am not feeling my best, I went out of my to ensure that I did leave anyone feeling worse after interacting with me.
I offered up genuine thanks to Verizon employee who revived and restored my cell phone when it crashed, rather than lash out in anger and frustration that the problem occurred in the first place, and I slowed down and actively listened when my daughters needed my attention, instead of snapping at them that I was in a hurry and too busy. When a man new to the day shelter for homeless men began to cry during his intake, I ignored my ringing telephone, the overhead pages, and the data that needed to be entered into the computer to simply be present for him and with him, and I gave him what reassurances that I could that better days were ahead for him. When all is said and done, I truly hope that I accomplished my goal of showing others the same kindness I showed myself and that I desired for myself today. Misery may love company, but I did not want to be the hostess sending out invitations to join me in a pity party today.
Monday afforded me the chance to start over, just as each day and each moment does, and I am hoping to wake up on the right side of the bed on Tuesday and to be able to do even better for myself and others. It is about progress, not perfection, each and every single day.
Just one thing each day . . .
Categories: Just One Thing Each Day