Just Do You

Because we always have choices…

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Down But Not Out…

Posted by georgiannasaysjustdoyou on November 28, 2010


In light of what seems to be a tough year for a lot of folks, and with suicide heavy in the news, I thought I would re-post an earlier blog on coping with sadness.

Everyone gets sad, stressed and overwhelmed at some point in their life. Things happen or things don’t happen that we want to happen. I am not talking about traumatic events. I am talking about every day life.

Sometimes we just deal with it by burying it and plowing forward. Sometimes we talk our friends ears off until it is out of our system. We have many ways to cope with stressful situations. But sometimes we just feel defeated.

Another lesson from my mother…it may or may not work for you, but it works for me.*
It’s okay to be down, but don’t let yourself be out for the count. I can remember very few times when my mother would close herself up in her bedroom and tell us to steer clear for the weekend. I never really thought much about it until later in life as I started to get overwhelmed and had so much on my plate, then my mother shared her approach (I never thought she was wise when I was 14…but she is a rock star to me now).

She said it is okay to give in and be sad. Cry if you must. Whatever helps you get through. But limit the time you give to being sad and feeling defeated. She actually put a time period on it. She had 4 kids in the house and life did not stop just because she was feeling sad. Like most parents, you usually can’t just dump your kids someplace else and take a weekend for yourself. So she had to work it into the life she had.

She would teach me to give myself the weekend, try to work it into my life. My kids don’t stop needing food, but I could give them lots of cereal and quick foods instead of cooking that weekend. My kids don’t stop needing supervision and engagement, but I could let them watch TV and play video games to their hearts’ content without interference from me.

But come Sunday night, put away the comfort food and the sad movies and get back into the cycle of life. You had your pity party, now it is time to get back to doing what you need to do. Make sure the kids have their bath, they are ready for the next day and so are you.

I share this life lesson because it has worked for me. Not feeling guilty about being sad and overwhelmed is a relief. Understanding that life goes on is important. Understanding that caving and staying down has serious consequences. Learning to cope with stress is not easy. If you haven’t figured out how to do this, I recommend therapy. Therapists are great for helping you find a coping strategy that will work for you and to help you see if you are just going through something short term or if you are depressed…

How you handle stress is another one of those life choices. In order to make a choice, you need to know your options. But know that you are definitely not alone. We all get there.

I do not have the answers, but I always have thoughts.  Won’t you share yours?

*My thoughts and ideas are not to be substituted for clinical advice

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One Response to “Down But Not Out…”

  1. One of the beauties of this approach is that the need to “take it out on others” doesn’t exist. Being conscious of what’s going on within ourselves is a wonderful gift.

    Thanks Georgianna!!

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