How Are You Feeling Today?
How are you feeling today? Has it been a good or bad day?
Whichever you have had, much value can be gleaned from it; if we only had good days we would learn very little and our growth would be minimal. It's a bit like plants - if every day was endless sunshine they wouldn't last long. So, good and bad days can be seen to be different sides of the same coin.
A common thing we may find ourselves doing after a bad day is beating ourselves up over it. Various forms of self-punishment can include drinking too much or overeating. The aim is to give ourselves a short-term lift. If we have a good day, on the other hand, we might decide to splash out on a nice meal, a bottle of wine or spend on the internet to keep the high going.
What most of us forget to do is actually get the most from the experience, whether good or bad; to learn from each equally and to respect them equally. How do we go about that?
Say you come home after a tough day and are tempted to raid the beer fridge; if, instead, you take a piece of paper and complete the following sentence: "Right now I am feeling...", then by the end of the exercise you may notice less of a need to crack open a bottle. Why? Because you have faced and released the emotions that were driving you to the fridge. They no longer have the same charge or feel like they are going to explode through your chest.
When you're feeling great, the motivation to do the same exercise may not be as strong; however it's worth making it a daily habit, whatever your mood, in order to stay connected with yourself and grounded.
Keeping a record or journal is like giving a voice to the whole spectrum of emotions that you experience and can help you to manage them better. It can help you understand the processes that you go through and how you react to personal challenges. This can lead to a clearer mind and calmer outlook. Most of all it will enable you to know yourself better and to trust more in the feelings that you have, whether they are positive or not.
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