The ever-changing weather in Vancouver recently, everything from snowstorm to clear skies, has brought me back to one of my favourite quotes:
You are the sky, and everything else is just the weather. - Pema Chödrön
This quote has incredible significance to me, because it reminds me that there is no such thing as having no bad days. Just like the weather, some days we may experience an abundance of light, yet other days we may be overcast with gloom. On bad days we may naturally feel unmotivated, lethargic, or perhaps easily irritated. These days are inevitable. But have you ever though of viewing bad days as opportunities for growth?
Bad days exist to challenge us. They encourage us to search within ourselves to overcome the challenges that arise. Whether its receiving a bad test mark, having tough day at work, or struggling with self-worth, know that these are not meant to bring you down, but rather to give you the opportunity to rise above. I recently attended a workshop where stress can be positive in invigorating and preparing the body for challenge. Why don't we view bad days the same way? Overcoming bad days can help us realize just how strong we are.
Here are some strategies that help me get through the darkest days:
1. Reflect on your strengths. During days where you feel overwhelmed or feel like a failure, look back on your strengths. Remember what you've achieved and what you've overcome. Know that your past experiences will help you through times of challenge. You can & you will!
2. Breathe. When we are anxious and tense, we may notice our muscles tighten and our breath shorten. Once you become aware of how you're feeling, turn your attention to your breath. Take a deep inhale through your nose, hold your breath at the top, then take a slow exhale. When you exhale, try to relax your shoulders away from your ears and let your muscles soften. Continue to breathe deeply to feel more relaxed.
3. Reach out to your support system. Don't be afraid to reach out to friends and family. Having someone listen about what you're going through may be very comforting. Your people want nothing but success and happiness for you, and would be great listeners and supporters to turn to. You've got a team behind you.
4. Self-care and exercise. Don't forget to take time to yourself! To relieve stress, turn to your passions. Explore something new. Watch your favourite show. Order your favourite food. Go shopping (one of my favourites). These activities are not a waste of time; they are crucial in maintaining a healthy work-play balance. Try to participate in some physical activities, such as going to the gym, trying out a dance class, or even going on a walk. Get those endorphins going!
5. Remember your goals. Choose some positive quotes or mantras that inspire and motivate you to reach your goals, and constantly remind yourself of them throughout your day/week. Think about your 'why.'
I hope you enjoyed, and are having a brilliant week. Here's to growing from bad days and challenges!