Hello and happy Monday to you all! This Monday happens to be a holiday, President’s Day, and many of you might be enjoying an extra day off from the hustle and bustle of the work week. A Monday off is always a good Monday but what do you do when the Monday isn’t a good one? What do you do with any day where there are disappointments and setbacks?
I know a few people who at the end of the work day, after they have made their way home, they carry all the disappointment and stress right along with them. They bring it home and give some to their loved ones. The loved ones give it back in anger and in guilt and the disappointment grows.
They seek to be alone to roll it around in their minds until it is bigger and heavier than it ever needed to be. They take it to bed and lie awake at night with it weighing on their minds. Then they wake up with it the next morning and drag it right back to work where it grows and morphs into stress and self-loathing.
The cycle is slow and so many do it day after day that it can feel normal. It can feel like being stressed, depressed, and disappointed is how you are supposed to feel every evening. It can feel like it will never end and that life is only a series of the same bad day being repeated over and over.
It doesn’t have to be that way. Each day can be a new day, separate and apart from all the days before. All you have to do is let go.
“At the end of the day, let there be no excuses, no explanations, no regrets.”
// Steve Maraboli, Life, the Truth, and Being Free
I know, I know, easier said than done, right? Of course! Anything worth doing is hard at first but that is why we start small and build the habit up over a long period of time through tiny actions.
Meditation is a good place to start. At the end of the day, take a few minutes, 10 or 15 will be or than enough, and just relax, take some deep breaths, and focus on you body and your immediate surroundings. If you need some tips on how to get started I recommend using the app Headspace or, if you happen to use Spotify, here is a playlist of Guided Meditation tracks.
Journaling is also a good way to get out all your frustration so that your loved ones don’t receive it. Every evening I do two pages, one side is where I write about everything that I am worried about, stressed about, and angry about, on the other side, I write a list of five good things that happened that day. Some days I wish I listed 10, some days it’s hard to come up with one, but with some effort I can always find five.
If you aren’t keen on the idea of writing extensively about the day you can instead keep a logbook, a simple list of events from the day. Either way, just make sure to find some good things too, and write them down. It helps to put the day into perspective.
Lastly, make sure you do something in the evenings that you enjoy and occupies your attention. My girlfriend crochets, my sister cross stitches, other people have gotten into adult coloring books. These are all activities that require attention, allow your mind to operate in a different way than it has been all day, and at the same time don’t require you to make a lot of decisions or choices, which could lead to more stress. They are actually very much like meditation.
If you are one-half of a couple make time for both you and your significant other do these activities together. As in separate, but in the same room. It helps to have another body nearby to make us feel connected and cared about, even if you are doing different things.
The point of all of this is to learn to end the day by letting the day go. Let there be no excuses, no explanations, and no regrets. Find the good, and then find a way to move on.
Tomorrow is a new day, a new start, and another chance to make it better :)
Featured image via Unsplash