Every morning I wake up with a blank slate: “What to write about today?” Sometimes the topic comes to me quickly. Sometimes it takes a while to emerge. This morning a thought jumped out at me, “What if someone is in a bad mood – depressed, sad or fearful, what would help her feel better and change a bad mood into a good one?”
I reflected on my own experiences and realized that during those gray and dark days, three lists have helped me turn my mood around.
When you find yourself stuck in a dark mood, you can breathe and exercise your way out of it for sure. You can also try to think positively and work to change how you feel about things and your life in general. But Let’s face it, when you get stuck in a flunk, you are unlikely to think positively – it’s just not natural. It takes a lot of mental power and discipline to do that.
So why not cheat a little.
You can compile the following lists now and read them every time you get into a bad mood. They will remind you of all the great things that have happened to you, give you a more well-rounded perspective on life, and remind you of your own ability to overcome whatever obstacles may be coming your way.
Gratitude List (The Present)
Once when I was not feeling great, I pulled out a pen and a piece of paper and started writing down things that I am grateful for in my life. Half an hour and five pages later, I was still going. I couldn’t stop. The list was so long that I couldn’t help but feel a deep gratitude – which is one of the most powerful healing energies there is. It immediately lifted make my mood and made everything better.
Success List (The Past)
When we are in a bad mood, we usually don’t feel great about ourselves and our ability to control life’s situations. This is when a success list comes in handy. Write down every obstacle you remember you’ve overcome, record all of your triumphs and victories, big or small, ancient or recent. Often we take these things for granted because we are facing new challenges every single day. But our past challenges and successes have led us to where we are today. This list of victories will give your self-esteem a boost and remind you that you can accomplish anything you set your mind to.
Bucket List (The Future)
I keep a running list of 10 things I must do, have, or be, before I die – my bucket list. I cross each one off when it’s done. A bucket list keeps our eyes forward on our vision – what we want to become. It lifts our spirit and gives us the energy we need to move out of that slump of muddy moods, and towards some worthy goals.
As we are approaching the end of a year, and the beginning of another, it would be a good exercise to revisit your old lists – if you have them – or start some new ones. They may be one of your best companions in the New Year.