Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Cure for a Bad Mood

This morning I'm in a really bad mood. I'm tired. I don't feel well. I don't want to be here. I'm mad at everyone. I want more sleep and I feel like telling everyone (including you!) who got more sleep than I did last night to go get stuffed. I need help.

I did a google search: [remedies "for a bad mood"] and here is a mish-mash compilation of the advice I found on many different web pages:

- Make a list of things you're thankful for
- Smile
- Do something nice for someone
- Listen to your favorite song and dance to it
- Eat chocolate
- Exercise
- Breathe deeply
- Take a nap
- Take a walk
- Sing a song
- Meditate on the suffering of others

Ok, so I'm feeling sorry for myself. There are lots of other people who are much worse off than I am - people who went to bed hungry or had to sleep outside on the sidewalk in the cold or who are grieving the loss of a loved one or who have a sick child or parent or friend. There are people who didn't get a good night sleep because they feared they were in danger or because they were up all night coughing or having trouble breathing or because someone they know is in danger and they are consumed by worry.

It's so easy for me to be overcome with emotion, particularly negative emotion, when I'm tired. I forget that my situation is temporary, that I can help myself feel better if I make an effort to do so - that eventually I will sleep comfortably and wake up feeling rested and refreshed. I just need to be patient. I just need to stop wallowing in self-pity.

So, maybe for now I should make that list of things I'm thankful for again. Maybe I should force myself to smile. Maybe I should play a favorite song in my head and do a little dance in my office chair. Maybe I ought to do deep breathing and stretches here in my chair. I can't take a nap, but I could close my eyes for a few minutes. I could do a loving-kindness meditation. I could pray for strength and courage -- for peace in my heart -- that love guide my every thought, word, and deed.

(Sorry about what I said before. I don't want you to get stuffed anymore.)


Suze said...

You know, sometimes I think there's a little too much "focus on the positive" in our society. Sometimes you just need to wallow in your bad mood for a while instead of trying so desperately to get out of it. If you're feeling shitty and all you think of is how you don't deserve to because so many people have it worse than you, it just makes things worse. That's how it is for me, anyway. I"m really moody these days, and while I know I should be grateful for having my health and my family and everything, I TOO want everyone who gets more sleep than I do to get stuffed. It's okay to be grouchy.

And besides, that's what blogging's for. Complaining when you need to ;)

Sending happy thoughts your way.


Pamela said...

Thanks, Susan. I was thinking of you when I wrote this and that's partly why I realized I should stop feeling sorry for myself. But, you make a good point. Sometimes you're in a bad mood. So what? Life goes on. :-)

Happy thoughts back to you. XOXO

Steph said...

I just clicked on the comments to write pretty much what Susan said. Be grouchy. Sometimes I worry that my blog is too grouchy, but as a regular reader of Vana Jezebel I would say too much grouchiness is not remotely in evidence on these pages.

I like the broodier Russians when I'm a sleep-deprived grouch. They are excellent for nursing a mood. Rachmaninov is the best. Some Prokofiev also good. I use Shostakovich with extreme caution (I want dark, but not existential despair).

Feeling your pain. Wishing you much untroubled sleep. :)

Anonymous said...

I just started re-reading a novel by Thomas McGuane for much the same reason. Sometimes a couple hours with a glass full of an amber liquid and a brooding book is a good tonic for the soul. Best if done solo. I am not above checking into a cheap hotel with a bottle and a stack of books and my journal until I get it all out of my system. I gain nothing but an appreciation for the lighter days. I was recently north, where there was already snow, and I was reminded of how hard it is to endure such moods when you never see the sun and you can barely stand up outside as the wind is blowing. At least you are in sunny San Fran. Just don't forget that Richard Brautigan killed himself in northern California...for a sad, but life-affirming read, check out "you can't catch death" by his daughter.


Pamela said...

I miss you, CC.

Anonymous said...


I miss you, too. If you have time, do this- go sit on a bench in Washington Square Park in North Beach, esp. near the churches. Then go down to citylights and browse all the great books, feel the warmth of all the other people in the shop...and then if you can afford it, stop in to a jazz club for an hour.

I'll be with you if you do.