Retracing Your Steps Can Solve the Roller Coaster

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It’s happened before.

Everything feels great, YOU feel great…then, suddenly, you don’t.

What changed?

No. Seriously. Think about it. What happened to change that feeling?

The word “trigger” is irky so I don’t really like to use it, but in this case, our mood does, in fact, get triggered from something.

If you can become more aware of what triggers your moods, you can learn to heal from those things. But you can’t heal from things you don’t understand yet.

So, the next time you’ve been going along and feeling fantastic, then suddenly the opposite, give yourself a little “your life” replay. Go back, step by step and evaluate how you were feeling in each moment and I can almost bet money on the fact you’ll figure out what it was that caused the flip.

I felt good until after I left Aunt Mary’s house.

What was it that happened at Aunt Mary’s? Was it a smell that brought you back to a trauma? Was it something she said that hurt you without her realizing? Did she refuse to answer the door and sent you away?

Some times it’s obvious, like with the refusal of answering the door. Other times, a smell, won’t be so clear right away. But, if you pay attention just a little more closely, you just might be able to pinpoint the things that cause the roller coaster-like emotional changes.

New Perspective

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Even the people who seem like they’ve got this whole Quarantine Life figured out, don’t. I promise you. They’re having decent days, but they, too have moments when it all catches up and they don’t know how to handle it.

How can I be so sure? Because I’m most certainly one of those people.

I’ll admit, my every day isn’t all that bad right now. I’m one of the lucky ones (if you want to call it that) who was already within the unemployment system when this started. So my paycheck never stopped (woohoo!) When this seemed like it was getting worse and the jobs I did have said “don’t come back till this is over!” I decided to head to my parents and set up shop, so I’m not alone and I can help them with whatever. So, because of that, I’ve had company and I’ve had a little bit of purpose in my days.

But this *thing* we’re all dealing with…we’re all dealing with it. I’ll be super duper one minute and then so frustrated about not having a job (especially one that controls my life as a whole, which is what mine always has.) I get frustrated sleeping on a futon, I get frustrated not having my own space or place, plus the fact half my stuff is in another state.

What I can say, is if you’re finding this is true for yourself, as well. But, maybe you’re feeling it rather hard and not just in waves (though, waves has been the most common description I get from clients) I’m going to ask you to try one thing and try it hard: flip your perspective.

When the moments come, stop yourself, breathe and tell yourself the positives of your situation.

In the beginning (and possibly now) people went from extremely busy, to having nothing but time. They were saying things like “I’m so sick of being stuck at home with nothing to do!”

Perspective: You’re not stuckyou’re safe. You don’t have nothing to do – we all have hobbies to fall back on, television to entertain us, things we’ve put off to get done around the house, closets that could use a cleaning out, cabinets that could be reorganized, yard work, baking, resumes to freshen up, etc.

Maybe you’re also in my boat of recently being laid off, or like me was about to get hired full-time only for the paperwork to never get here due to covid-19. You may feel to blame even though you know that’s not the case. But, lets look at this switch flip.

Perspective: Yes, you’re unemployed – but now you’re given the opportunity to restart, rebuild and find a job that you truly love. Maybe this is your opportunity to have a true reset. Think about what you really want out of what you do, maybe you had a dream job already in mind but never thought you’d get there…what do you need to achieve that dream job once we can get back into the economy? There are many schools offering free online courses to help, build up that resume, think of the steps you need to take and utilize the time you have to grow as a human and better your opportunities once this passes – because it will pass. You can set yourself up for some great things if you switch your mindset.

Think about what your biggest struggles are right now and see if you can flip your perspective on them. Once you can, it’ll feel like you’re looking at a whole new world of opportunity.

We All Have Our “Team”

Day “seems-like-forever” of quarantine.

This weird state of being that we are all in, at least for me, is starting to feel “normal” these days.

It’s as if I’ve become a teenager again. Except this time around, I’m more educated in a lot of ways, including life; I’ve established a career (even if temporarily on hold); I’ve learned some hard lessons, fought some hard battles, I even have a 401k floating around somewhere. But, here I find myself in my childhood bedroom, now filled with my Dads collectibles, a futon and some scattered boxes that are mine. A portion of my life is here in New York, locked up and quarantined while the rest is basically doing the same, on its own in Boston.

Last night was the NFL Draft, which was exciting for a lot of people, it being one of the only sporting type events we have had in the last couple months. Of course, it got me thinking (a lot of this situation we are all in does) the NFL draft is a lot like the relationships we build in life. Seems like a stretch? Hold up. Let me explain.

When Belichick is getting ready to make his pick of which newbie to add to his Patriots roster, do you think he’s ever just gone, “eh ya know what, he’ll do, I guess.”

NO.

He, like all the other teams have gone and done their research. They’ve watch countless hours of college game footage, witnessed it first hand through their designated “go check this guy out” guy, they’ve done their homework to know what their selection can add to their team. This is how you should be handling your relationships in life. Now I’m not saying to pre-stalk someone out and do a lengthy background check. That would be hella weird. What I’m saying is: Take Care in who you surround yourself with. Be aware of behaviors, be aware of actions and if you’re getting back what you’re giving.

A sports team is trying to get quality players to fill out their squad: you want to do the same thing with the people you’re allowing into your life and world. A team wants players that’ll elevate each other; you want to surround yourself with people that will elevate you and who you, too, can elevate.

But, while you’re a player in someone else’s game, you’re the coach of your team. You’re in control of who sticks around and what energy you allow in your space. If someone is making you feel a certain negative way, this is where you can step back, do your research and evaluate if it’s something that can keep that person in your huddle. Our playing season is our life. We only get one. Don’t settle for less than you deserve.

Ok team, go show ‘em what ya got….annnd break!

Me, Myself & I

This is quarantine.

You’ve wanted time for yourself. You’ve wanted to have no where to be and all the time in the world.

It’s here.

Don’t be scared of it. Don’t try to run from it. Don’t get in your own head or your own way about it.

Be lazy. Be productive. Learn something new. Learn to love your old hobbies again. Binge watch TV …all…damn…day. Eat good food. Write, read, rest, relax, exercise.

Learn to love yourself with every ounce of your being.

This time is yours. Be good to yourself with it.

And most importantly: STAY SAFE AT HOME.

“Normal” will be here before you know it and you’ll look back at this time and either think, “I’m glad I did that for myself” or you’ll wish you did things differently. Which do you wanna be?

I Dare You

Every single day of your life, you’ve felt in control but, NEWS FLASH! You never were! And ya know what? Deep down you know that. ⠀

So, right now why does it feel so different? If we’re never in control, why does the pandemic make us feel so out of sorts?

Because we’ve all slowed down, stopped and now we can focus on that lack of control. It’s hard to trick yourself into thinking you have a hold on anything when you don’t have work, school, friends, stores, etc keeping you on-the-go.⠀

I want you try to something.

With this time to look at that uncertainty, yell at it: “You don’t scare me!”

Because here’s the truth to remember: we have all been here before with distraction. You’ve overcome this a million times.

Embrace this time. Enjoy this time. Don’t let the uncertainty run your life now ✌🏼

Ya Gotta Have Faith

…and more so, HOPE.

I like to have posts named after songs or song lyrics. Some times it isn’t possible and that’s fine but, today’s felt right.

I’ll admit it hasn’t been easy navigating this new norm. Even the home-bodiest of homebodies still likes to go to a place or two every once and a while! But alas, a trip to the grocery store can be frightening right now.

I know the last food run I made with my Dad, we were determined to not have to go to a big store for a couple weeks at the least. Part of that was to avoid people, obviously, but also it’s a little extra-anxiety inducing just to see so many people walking around Wal-Mart in masks.

It’s like we’re living in a Matt Damon movie and we can’t seem to get out of it.

But, this will pass.

The uncertainty on a timeline has people living in a ball of emotion, understandably, however it’s so important to remember there will be a time after this and we will start to get back to “normal” some time in the near future. With that – allow your HOPE to drive you.

Hope for everything you’re missing right now. Hope for your career to reach new levels. Hope to reach goals that you’re now realizing you have. Hope to that we all get out of this a little stronger, yet kinder; determined, yet helpful to others.

Allow your HOPE to continue to guide you and provide you that push you need to continue each day. Allow your hope to keep you smiling and not falling into a pile of depressed sweats.

What are you HOPEful for?

Feeling ‘Blah’ in Our New Norm?

As the days of quarantine pass by, have you taken notice of what your body and mind are telling you?

I can hear you already, “Uh, hello, my brain is saying too many things, I can’t turn it off!”

I believe it and I feel it deep in my soul!

The most common thing I’ve heard from people is a lack of motivation; a feeling of, “why am I doing any of this?” when it comes to their work or schooling, which is now happening from home, online and just feels abnormal.

With an unknown time frame of how long all of this will last, bad news pouring in from every avenue and being isolated from your loved ones, it’s overwhelming.

The best tip I can suggest is to listen to how your body feels. I’m not suggesting you overthink your way to experiencing phantom COVID symptoms – what you need to do is simply pay attention and follow through.

Here’s my example: You’ve been sitting at your computer all morning trying to get a proposal done for work, but you can’t seem to get the creative juices flowing. Get up, walk away and give yourself some time to reset.

Yes, there are deadlines, I get it. But, do you want to submit something you know isn’t your best, quickly? Or something that’s up to par with your norm during your new norm? (The same can be said for school work.)

Another example situation: If you’re someone, like myself that doesn’t have a boss to answer to right now and has the majority of the day to sort of do “whatever,” it can be even more difficult to feel motivated.

If you haven’t done a daily “to-do” list or created a routine for yourself, that’s where you need to start. For someone that’s working from home, they can at the least feel like they have purpose and feel productive with the work they accomplish. For the rest of us, we have to create our own feelings of accomplishment. That can be as simple as getting all the laundry done (I know it doesn’t sound like much, but these days – it feels like a lot!)

It’s also important to know, in either circumstance, that those days where you feel like doing nothing but binging Netflix? They’re completely acceptable right now! Self-care is where it’s at, boss or no boss. If your body and mind need that stress relief in doing nothing – listen to it.

No one is handling this the same as the person in the apartment next to them. We’re all feeling similar things, but the uncertainty and the stress that comes from it can fluctuate our mental health and if you’re not familiar with these feelings of anxiety, it can be tough to navigate for the first time, especially during a pandemic. Be kind to yourself, don’t get stuck in negative feelings; Embrace TV, utilize technology in positive ways by connecting with friends and family, pick up forgotten hobbies, enjoy good food, talk long walks through the neighborhood and sleep in! Let your face breathe with no make-up, don’t do your hair, put on a fresh pair of sweats and allow yourself to just be comfy.

Take care of yourself and you and your days will be better for it.

SIDE NOTE: One of the biggest things that’s helped me when I’ve been feeling exhausted from, well, doing nothing – GET UP… and force yourself to do something (anything.) It might not work every single time, but it will help a lot of ’em. Even if it’s to get a little boost to make it through the afternoon and not sleep the day away.

Who Am I Checking On Today?

Every morning when I wake up, I know I’m trying to figure out how to navigate this weird world we are currently surviving in. Even for someone like myself, it’s uncomfortable. In my situation, I made sure when it seemed things were taking a negative turn, I came home. My work for Feel This Happy can come anywhere with me and my radio work was being placed on hold – so, nothing was keeping me locked in place. I packed up the car, made the pets comfy and took the ride back to Upstate, New York to be with my parents.

What this now means? Every day feels very much like 15-years old, back in high school; sleeping in my old bedroom, driving around my hometown when supplies are needed, walking around the neighborhood with my Mom, shooting hoops with my Dad, playing my guitar…I’m an adult child. It can be a bit of a mind f&%$.

But, you feel that, too, don’t ya?

We’re all feeling uncomfortable, uncertain, scared, but in moments joyful – it’s a roller coaster. Some are handling it better than others. That’s why every morning I’m waking up and I’m asking myself, “Who am I going to check on today?”

We’re all feeling the same, but different and the best way to make sure we’re still together but apart: Check On Your People.

So, who are you going to text, Facetime, Call, Zoom, Skype, etc today?

Don’t Let Quarantine Take Control Of Your Mental Health

I had heard on the news yesterday morning that around 43% of people feel like this pandemic has taken it’s toll on their mental health.

It’s overwhelming and you may be experiencing anxiety and stress at higher levels than ever before without any ideas on how to control them or comfort yourself. Ya know what doesn’t help? Everyone is feeling the same way.

What I can tell you, is those of us who have suffered long before this and who have worked through our previous anxieties seem to have a pretty good handle on all this. It’s still stressful, but we’re making the best use of the time.

I don’t say that to rub it in, I say that to let you know when you’re feeling like it’s all too much and you have no one to talk to because they also feel like it’s all too much…you have me (and so does your friend, or boyfriend, or parent.)

Check out more below:

QUICK HITS: How To Best Use Your Time Alone or With Family

Quarantine is weird and overwhelming and sending a bunch of mixed emotions at all times. It’s a lot. But, no matter your current living situation, you have an opportunity to utilize your time in really good, positive ways.

From being alone, to being a couple without kids or a couple with kids, I go over a couple quick things to make your time extra special.

Watch More Here: