If you’re here reading this blog you’re more than likely experiencing symptoms of seasonal affective disorder. Maybe you’re feeling deeply tired. Are you coming down from a panic attack, or feeling lost in deep despair? Let’s face it, SAD sucks.
But for the next few minutes I would like to invite you to try something, just to see if it helps. You have nothing to lose and you could find a new tool that helps you get through the day. It’s helping me right now.
You see, this morning I am dog tired. My eyes hurt, my head is full of fog and my body full of lead. My head hurts and I am struggling to think. I feel like I could sleep for a week, and yet I am quite happy.
I can imagine you are asking how I can be happy feeling this bad. Surely I am fed up with feeling like this, and if I let myself I will say yes, I long for warm, bright sunny days where existing seems so easy.
But, in this moment, I am ok.
How am I doing this? I am staying in the moment and accepting my situation, and this is what I would like you to try as you read this blog.
Spend a moment really tuning into how you are feeling but while you do this, try and observe it as if you are watching yourself from a distance, is that person tired, anxious, depressed? Put a name to how you are feeling.
Now I want you to think just about this moment in time. Forget about what the next moment needs from you. Forget about how you felt in the last moment. Just consider what you have to do right now.
I’m no psychic but I’m guessing, if you’re reading this blog, in this moment, all you need to do is breath and move your eyes. Maybe you will need to scroll the screen, but just right now life isn’t asking that much of you.
With that in mind, how do you feel about the symptoms you are experiencing?
I’m sitting here typing, I’m still tired and aching, but because I don’t have to do much in this moment other than string words together and move my fingers I realise I can cope. My tiredness isn’t really causing me that much trouble.
It’s only when I think about what I have to do next that I fear that I won’t be able to do it. I don’t have to fear not having the energy to do what I am doing now because I am already doing it. Can you see that you are able to do what you are doing in this moment despite what you are feeling?
This is the essence of what Eckhart Tolle called “The Power of Now”, the change in perspective we have if we stay in this moment.
Much of our depression and anxiety comes from the fear that we will not have the wherewithal to handle whatever is going to happen next. We look ahead through time and see that spring is so far away and our mood sinks. We think about the day ahead of us and what it will take to get through it and our anxiety increases. But in this moment, we are coping just fine.
Read that last paragraph again, did you feel your depression creeping in as your thoughts focused on spring? Did you feel the pang of anxiety thinking about your day ahead of you? And did you feel the calmness as you realised that in this moment, you are doing just fine?
This is what I would like you to try more often. When you feel yourself slipping bring all of your attention to what you are doing right in this moment and realise that you are just fine, because you are already doing all you need to do in this moment.
The more we can stay in the now and forget about our fears and sorrow of the future the more content we can be accepting that, yes, we feel pretty rubbish in this moment, but that’s ok, because we are coping.
I am aware that for some this will seem patronising. Of course, this will not work for everyone or every time, but if just one person finds this outlook helpful my work here is done.
Wishing you all sunbeams.