Are you greeting each new day with optimism and energy or are you feeling a bit lackluster? Are you dragging in the morning, slogging through mental, physical, and emotional quicksand throughout your work day, when school lets out, or any of those other times you want – and need - to be bright, cheery, energetic?
Whether one is in transition or not, there are times in our lives when we lack that extra oomph, that shine, that spark that makes all things possible – even doable. Why is that?
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The reasons can be one or several: career, relationships, finances, home life, health, school, fitness, schedules and time crunches, commutes, even the people we interact with on a regular basis. Any, some, or all can cause us to feel wiped out, depressed, stressed, discouraged, hopeless, exhausted, daunted, downtrodden. We know we should just simply ‘dig deep,’ rise above, and push onward and upward. Yet, at times in our lives, due to one or a set or circumstances and conditions that have changed or added up over time, it can feel nearly impossible to find that spark to drag ourselves out of the perceived muck. We have succumbed to energy drains – whether person, place, thing, circumstance – and need to get our groove back on! This may seem impossible if one is having a hard time finding the energy to pack a lunch AND water the plants.
It can happen to any of us. Take Helen, a single mother of a young boy, who gets up at the crack of dawn to dress, prepare herself and her son for the day, get him to the sitter, then commute 45 minutes to her job. During her work day, she thinks of her son often, feeling sadness that she can’t spend more time with him and worrying that she’ll miss so many milestones in his young life. Day’s end finds her doing the same in reverse: 45-minute commute, gathering son from sitter, arriving home to make dinner, spend a bit of time with her boy, and tend to household chores. Helen is as tired in the morning as she is a night; aware that she feels like she is not ‘running on all cylinders,’ she is trying to find light at the end of the seeming tunnel and knows something needs to change.
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Conversely, we have Naomi, a stay-at-home Mom who left a very lucrative career about a year ago in order to be home full-time for her young daughter. Even though Naomi does not have to leave the house, she is finding it more and more difficult to even find the time to get dressed. Her daughter, Katie, seems to have so many needs and demands that Naomi is hard-pressed to get anything accomplished around the house and for herself during Katie’s waking hours. Naomi is exhausted, misses her career and coworkers, feels like she’s spinning her wheels, and is at her wits end. She’s not sure how, but knows she needs to get off of what she perceives to be a gerbil wheel of emotional hell.
Isn’t it odd how unique we are? It would seem that if Helen and Naomi traded places, all would be rosy and full of life’s passion. Since most of us know that is not realistic, what CAN we do to get our oomph back, banish the ‘quicksand,’ and once again, plant flowers?