Feeling down in the dumps on any given day is something everyone will recognise.
We all wake up sometimes and think “uggggh”.
We all have a bad day from time to time.
Sometimes that bad day happens tomorrow too, and the next day, and the next day.
Now it’s a bad week.
This is something I noticed myself recently.
On the first day, I didn’t think much of it. But by the third day, I’d noticed it.
I felt glum and snappy.
I dropped a Quorn nugget on the floor while putting out my dinner. I told gravity to fuck off.
I didn’t want to be in that place anymore. I wanted to get back to my old self.
So I asked myself a question I often ask my clients.
“When have you gotten out of this before?”
I remember a few winters ago. I felt a similar way but I got out of it.
Which led to another question I ask my clients: “How did you manage to do that?”
A friend of mine was spending the season in India. She lent me something called a lumie light.
It is a special kind of bright light.
“Have a go of this”, she said.
It seemed to help back then.
If it helped before, there’s a good chance it will help again. So I bought one.
Now I’m full of beans again.
It’s on in front of me as I write this. I use it each morning.
This is not a post about bright lights. What works for me may not work for you.
It is a post about noticing when you get yourself free of the tricky stuff.
It is about noticing your good moments and asking how you did it.
Even in the midst of awfulness, some days are better than others, and some moments are better than others.
When we have had bad times before, somehow we eventually got out of them.
What did you do to create those better moments?
How did you manage to make yourself feel better at those times?
When you look there, you’ll notice what works for you.
It’s key information. Much more important than knowing why you felt glum. You could spend years figuring that out. Or you could feel better soon.
Once we discover what works, we can do more of it.
What works for you? And how can you do more of it?Alun Parry is Director of The Liverpool Psychotherapy Practice