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Bad Days Depend on the Way you See Them. Sunday November 30, 2014

If you're reading this then the likelihood is that you know all about bad days. You could draw a map of the Slough of Despond, you could describe intimately the fifty shades of grey and darkness that make up the colour of those bad times and you have measured exactly how deep is that pit of despair.

And we have days that start off bad and just get worse; days when we end up thinking that we are a worthless individual, unworthy to even pollute this planet with our presence. Our sins and iniquities weigh us down and we just want to die.

No – that's not an exaggeration, but it is often an exaggerated response to small hurts and minor transgressions. I remember that the last time I felt like that, I was looking at my bank statement which showed I had gone £8 overdrawn.

That £8 might as well have been £8 million judging by the way I felt. I'd been overdrawn before; I've been overdrawn since (admin has never been a strong point), but at that particular time, even a small unplanned negative balance was enough to throw me into the blackest despair.

Even in the midst of that despair however, I could hear distantly the voice of my more sensible self, telling me I was overreacting, and even laughing at all that drama.

I had a bad day recently too. A migraine meant I had to cancel plans and disappoint some clients. In the afternoon I decided, against husbandly advice and still feeling very woozy, to keep my appointment to donate blood, and had the misfortune to suffer a dramatic nosebleed while in the chair so that everything and everybody (all the nice nurses anyway) had to stop to mop me up and disengage me from the equipment. Apparently one is not allowed to donate blood through one's nose. I crept from the local town hall in abject humiliation.

Sensible Mary laughed at that one too – and advised me to write a blog on it! This time she was loud and clear.

That's because I'm well at the moment. Those same events, happening when the Black Dog of Depression was in residence, would have been enough to put me on the floor, to make me feel useless; an unsightly blot on the landscape of our fair land.

So sometimes we need to take a step back and look at things in proportion. We might not be able to feel any differently about the situation, but we need to intellectually know that we are over-reacting to minor events. They feel big and overwhelm us because our view point is from the dark pit of despair (that's something lower than the viewpoint of an ant, by the way). It's OK to feel this way, but we need to think as well.

The bank is used to people going overdrawn. They slap a £35 fine on you and forget it. The nice nurses at the blood donor sessions are used to people fainting, or being sick or having nosebleeds, they've already forgotten about it.

And I got a blog out of it: hey – everybody wins.

A Moodscope member.

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Anonymous Sun, Nov 30th 2014 @ 8:47am

I liked it when you said you have to think too. Helpful blog, thank you

Anonymous Sun, Nov 30th 2014 @ 8:50am

Yes bad days are here again for me in the form of Christmas, as usual I am being pulled in all directions, by others who always suggest what I should be doing with my time over this time of year. When you have a family who do not see one another because they have fallen out over the years, it is very hard trying to keep the peace. If I say I am doing my own thing this year, I'm selfish, If I fit in with all their plans, I'm not happy doing what they want and bossing me about again. So this year I have said, I am doing "this and this" and now as usual one of the family is not happy..... So I have decided enough is enough, I have told everyone what I am doing, and some are not happy. These 2 days cause me so much down time each year, I always feel so sad and cannot wait until it is over.... thank you for letting me have this rant... roll on 2015..x

Anonymous Sun, Nov 30th 2014 @ 9:13am

You are so right Mary, I have found myself having proper tragic heroine moments over ludicrous things. Part of me laughs while the other part is right there living the drama. Another wonderful blog, thank you xx

Anonymous Sun, Nov 30th 2014 @ 2:31pm

Excellent blog, thank you x

Anonymous Sun, Nov 30th 2014 @ 6:09pm

The magic state...Perspective! For me, it's like an unfaithful boyfriend!! Hard to keep...
Thank you for the reminder Mary, love ratg x.

Di Murphey Sun, Nov 30th 2014 @ 9:25pm

Dearest Mary ~
Lovely post! For what it might be worth to some our struggling hearts, Dr. Amy Johnson writes the following (Being Human):

"Anytime your experience of life doesn’t reflect clarity or peace of mind—anytime you’re suffering; experiencing confusion, pain, fear, or loss; or questioning yourself or your abilities—you are deep in thought. Personal, habitual thinking is the only thing that ever holds you back from the peaceful experience of who you really are." She writes that our "default state" is clarity and peace of mind.

Not certain I fully can embrace this concept ~ yet it is intriguing to me. Perhaps there are others who will be adept at integrating this. I would like to know if anyone can do this.
Di Murphey

Anonymous Mon, Dec 1st 2014 @ 2:08pm

Oh poor's not fair having people tell you how you should spend your time off. Go and do what you really want to do...or as near as damn it, as my dear Mum used to say!
But please, come and tell us how it went or if you need to rant on either of the days or just after, rant's what we all do and what we're here to listen for - for everyone else stressing over Christmas's just Sunday lunch with Christmas crackers!

Anonymous Mon, Dec 1st 2014 @ 2:12pm

Excellent blog as usual dear Mary. Isn't it awful that our minds can take us so low, that the really minor things....even petty things can means so much?
Thank you - we must learn to keep things in perspective!

Anonymous Mon, Dec 1st 2014 @ 8:56pm

Great point on keeping things in perspective. I dread the holidays and having to share my daughters with their "dreaded in-laws". I will do my best to keep this in perspective.

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