You know those days, the ones where you wake up already feeling grumpy and ugly and a few steps behind? The ones where you just want to throw your hair into a bun and put on your comfiest outfit and a workout is the absolute last thing on your mind? Those days where you let yourself off of the hook for just about everything?
Uh huh. Sometimes the only sane answer is an extra large glass of merlot and a House of Cards marathon on your comfy couch. Refueling can make the crabbiness disappear. But what about those times when the angstiness just won’t subside? The truth is, more often than not, avoiding things only makes us feel worse.
Sometimes, what we need isn’t a comfy couch but a swift kick in the pants to do the very thing we’re sidestepping.
I’ve been conducting a little personal experiment lately. On the days when I feel crummiest and laziest, rather than choosing the easiest route, I choose the path of most resistance. If I want to schlep it in my torn up jeans, I put on a dress instead. And then I curl my hair. And put on lipstick. And you know what? Like some sort of voodoo magic, I feel better. My mood is no longer as crummy, I feel more confident, less likely to snap at my husband and make excuses for myself throughout the rest of the day.
It’s strange but true: the days we feel the most avoidant are the days where showing up and engaging will have the biggest impact.
This works for just about anything: when I really don’t feel like running, I run. When the idea of socializing totally turns me off, I get dressed and go to a party. (Ever noticed that some of the best nights were the one where you went out even though you didn’t really feel like it?)
Nine times out of ten, doing the thing I was trying like hell to avoid makes me feel miraculously better.
So how do you know if it’s a vino in the bath or kick in the pants kind of day? The key is the strength of the aversion. For me, the more averse I feel to something (that would normally make me feel good), the more likely it is to be the cure for what’s bugging me.
Neutral and tired? By all means, schlep it and stay at home. But if you feel angsty and averse, try doing the very thing you’re avoiding and see what happens.
Have you ever noticed this in your own life? What sorts of things are you avoiding that might actually make you feel better?
P.S. Don’t forget to head over and Freshly Press Yourself. There are lots of cool posts already up, and you have until Saturday to join the fun.