Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Put Some Lipstick On It!

"I'm in-right, out-right, up-right, downright, happy all the time...since Jesus Christ came in and cleansed my heart from sin..." Old Sunday School chorus

Happiness is sitting down to write my blog with a hot cup of tea. Steaming, with silk to sweeten and whiten. A robust assam. Not as good as Earl Grey, but it still gets the job done as far as warming the innards.

The kids have been immunized once again, and I was able to get in on the act. They all thought I was pretty brave not to cry. I figured I'd cried enough the past week that a poke wasn't sufficient to draw tears. Not even a eye water.

Oh, and my comp audit is once again finished for the year. Which is worth a huge dose of happiness right there.

Sunday we took a mental health day. A day to shore up our family. A day to rest. A stay in the yoga pants sans___ all day-day.

Sometimes I need days like that. When I don't do anything. But just read. And sleep. and hunker down.

But then, towards late afternoon, I start feeling kind of grungy, greasy and gross. My mood dives. I am lethargic. And I remember...

just take a shower, and it will all look better. 

I am pessimistic by nature, but I can only be blue for so long, before I start to go crazy. (Obviously.) I have to give the low spirit a kick before it settles in for good. And here is what I do...

we are calling her our little Ewok these days. That's what she looks like all bundled up.
And she kind of jabbers like them too.
All set for our family 4 mile run. She thought it was awesome! Why wouldn't she? She was just along for the ride.

-Shower. My mood lifts automatically when I am clean. The magic of hot water and dial soap.
Clean body, clean clothes, clean mind.

-Get dressed. Get out of the comfy yoga pants and into jeans. Or a dress or whatever. Clothes. They say to dress for the job you want, not the job you have. I say, dress for the mood you want, not the mood you have.

-Primp. Now, if you know me at all, you know my flippin' locks take about 3.5 minutes to style-blow dry and curl. That 3 minutes can seem like forever, but skipping it, makes me feel lousy (because I feel like I look bad), and doesn't save me much time.

But besides the hair, how about makeup? In the words of one of my friend's mother, "for goodness sake, put some lipstick on!" She said this to my friend when she was having chemo. Unfeeling? Maybe. But, the fact of the matter is, her mood was lifted when she put some effort into her appearance.  I always think of them when I don't feel like putting on my token lip stain and mascara. Put some lipstick on! It takes 2 minutes, but it definitely takes me from tired looking to...not tired looking? My eyes pop, my lips look nice. It looks like I care, my mood follows, and I do care.

-Cut the caffeine. This past week I have drank way too much coffee. Not "shakes" levels yet, but pretty near. When I am nervous I get cold, so I drink coffee to stay warm. I drank way more than normal this week, and my moods started swinging. Of course, they were already swinging. The coffee was not helping though. I can already tell the difference today on just one cup.

-Take my vitamins. My happy pills. I have taken prenatal vitamins almost daily since I was pregnant with BMV. I added Krill Oil to those about 5 years ago. Krill Oil is an Omega 3 fatty oil, which helps with a lot of things-including the blues. I can always tell when I have forgotten my vitamins a few days.

-Turn up the music. Not the hymns. They were making me cry yesterday as I was playing the piano. No, good, upbeat music to lift the mood. Beach Boys, S & G, Motown, Leahy.

-Do something. Anything. Take a walk. Play a game. Go to the store. Watch a movie. Run-get those happy endorphins flowing.

-Surround myself with the people I love. Unplug from online. I have found that being online rarely improves my blue moods. I don't know why this is.

-Get a hug. Give a hug. The importance is the hug. Great for feeling loved and lifting moods.

-Write a thankful/smile list.

-Read the Bible. Especially the Psalms. Some might start sad or discouraged, but they always end praising God.

-Clean. I don't like cleaning per say. But a good scrub does the mind some good. Probably like boxing-only more productive.

What are your strategies for kicking the blues? Share with me in the comments.