Did you know that the average adult has 3-5 "blue days" each month? That's right; it's perfectly normal to have an occasional blue day...a day when you're just a little sad and you don't know why, a day when you have a hard time getting motivated to do anything constructive, or a day when you just move a little more slowly.
I have blue days. Do you? As long as you're not experiencing more than your normal allotment, 3 - 5, you don't need to fret over these less than stellar days. But you do need to know how to keep moving through them.
Last week I had a couple of pale blue days, not the especially woeful variety, but simply a little on the blue side. Thus, no posts... By the time I had moved on to brighter skies, the Christmas rush had hit and I had no time to catch up on blogging. But be assured the week was not a total waste. I managed to move through the blue and on to the rosy by giving myself a little grace and putting into practice a few other guidelines I've learned over the years.
While the traditional colors of Christmas are red and green, it's quite common to wake up a little blue during the season of noel. So if the doldrums hit you during the holidays or any other day, you might have better success turning the corner more quickly if you keep these simple basics in mind:
- Keep your appointment with the Lord, even if you skip all others. I've found that the blues tend to pull me away from my quiet time with God and His Word, but it's worth it to discipline myself and go through with this precious time anyhow. Even if I don't fully "show up," He does. It may not be the most stellar quiet time experience ever, but it's usually sweet and soothing.
- Give a little grace...to yourself. We tend to be more understanding with others during their blue days than we are with ourselves. But it's ok to give yourself a little grace. Allow yourself a sweet indulgence (I said sweet, not sinful!), take your time (move a little more slowly), don't chide yourself for work left undone, and resist the urge to over compensate by pushing yourself to extremes.
- Do the essentials in order to stay on track. Get out of bed, take a shower...eventually, eat three healthy meals, go for your daily walk or run, do at least a few of your daily chores or jobs. Keep moving, even if it may be at a slower pace than normal.
- Tell someone. It's difficult for me to tell people how I feel when I'm glum, but I've found it takes the deeper hues out of my blues if I at least let someone -- a close friend or my spouse -- know that "Hey, I'm struggling a little today."
- Tell Him. Jesus knows, as the song goes. But tell Him how you're feeling and then watch for Him to minister to you. Ask Him to delight you, to lift your mood, to send you a sweet surprise, to be gentle with you. I've found Him to be a perfectly delightful gentlemen when He hears I'm in the dumps.
- Let scripture minister to your hurting soul and sad spirit. This is a great time to find a verse or two that really speaks to your woes and memorize it. You'll probably find it lifts your spirits in no time flat.
- Get moving...at least a little. When I'm blue I tend to gravitate to my sofa. And stay there. But I find it helpful to force myself up and about as much as possible. Go for a walk, get out in the sunshine of the backyard and stretch, dust the furniture in the living room, sweep the floor.
How do you move through the blue days? I'd love to know. But remember, if you're experiencing more than a few azure days, you may need to see your doctor for a physical or talk with a Christian counselor about deeper issues. The goal is thriving, not just surviving!
Labels: blue days, depression, What's in Your Pack