So many things in life we learn by doing. Or not doing. If we’re lucky, we learn by watching others make their mistakes. Nah. Cuz we always think we can do better, we’ve chosen better, or that will never happen to us. So, the following are just a few examples of… coping? with decisions we may or may not be satisfied with. You may want to try one. Any one of these skills I find to be helpful whether I’m feeling good or bad.
Daydreaming: I do love this one. I can do anything. No repercussions. If we’re bogged down by demands of parenthood, we can briefly satisfy the urge to curl up in an overstuffed, distressed leather chair in front of a roaring fire with a good book. Yes, reality will assert itself again, but that daydream will still be there.
Gardening: This used to be a huge stress reliever until my arthritis began to hinder pulling weeds. With the right tools, though, I can still dig them out. And I do love sitting in the dirt; good rich earth smells good.
Journaling: This is one of my favorites; especially lately. With so much going on in our lives, we can explore feelings and relationships we want or need without actually crossing a line. When an old flame, unrequited it may have been, becomes an all-consuming need because your current relationship has become dictatorial and domineering. With journaling, we can put to the page all the things we want to do and say when we don’t have the courage to speak the words. Journaling is a wonderful way to open the doors to feelings without guilt.
Music: I find music to be very liberating to my psyche. Certain types of music seem to just set my soul free. And with so many types of music, there is always something to match my mood. And I find music incredibly inspiring.
Remembrance: I find this one particularly helpful when I’m having a bout of low self-esteem. I go back and look at things I’ve done well. A beautiful drawing or painting; one of my woodburnings got honorable mention in an art contest once. My debut novel got first place in two different contests. I find reminding myself that I’ve actually accomplished these things gives me the nudge I need to finish a project I may have stumbled to a halt on.
These are just a few of my own coping skills I’ve learned through life. What skills have you learned? Is there one particular thing you do to get through a rough day? Please share your special gifts.