Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Those "blah" days

I think we all have days which aren't particularly bad or stressful, but are simply "blah". You get out of bed without your usual spirit of enthusiasm and energy; nothing seems worth doing and all you want is to crawl back under your blankets with a good book and a cup of cocoa and curl up there for the rest of the day.

I have that from time to time, and developed a simple strategy of dealing with the "blah"s when they come:

1. Do something. Even if it's a small and simple task, it will get you started and – hopefully – motivated. You can start from the quick and easy chores, to give you a feeling of accomplishment, or from something you particularly like. For me, it's usually laundry: washing, sorting and folding, or ironing. It usually gets me in a working mood.

2. Brighten up your background. Whether it's putting your favorite music on, lighting a scented candle or drinking tea from an especially pretty cup, even the little things have a potential of cheering you up.

3. Take it slowly. It just happens that on some days we aren't quite as productive as we are used to. Maybe your previous days have been so packed with activities that you just need to rest, or maybe a cold is approaching. So just make sure the basic tasks get done, and leave the rest for another day. Or devote your time to less straining tasks, like writing out your shopping list, planning your menu, making phone calls or catching up on your correspondence. "Blah" days come and go, so why not just take the opportunity for a bit of quiet time?

27 comments:

Sammybunny said...

I know the feelings. It is especially in college sometimes to manage those days when you have like a hundred thousand things to do for school plus outside activities AND manage your social time. But it is especially hard because one has to put God first in the midst of it all and that is definitely the most challeging when you are feeling blah!

Gothelittle Rose said...

When I'm having an inexplicably blah day, the first thing I always do is to go my calendar and see how close I am to the dreaded PMS. :)

Your advice is square on. :)

Bethany Sue, CFO said...

We have had a few of these here lately. Must be the weather. Great post.

Ways of Zion said...

Today we woke up to darkness and rain. Definately a blah day. So the kids and I are going to go visiting. Thanks for helping to encourage me to get up and do something!

Julia said...

Doing something when you feel blah is so important. It's so easy to become immobilized and let depression kick in.

Anna, I wanted to let you know that I am impressed with the way you allow dissenting points of view in your comments. I enjoy reading your blog, but to me the best part is the comments on the more controversial issues. I appreciate the polite, intelligent discussion. So many times on the internet these kinds of things can become nothing but personal attacks.

Sammybunny said...

I agree wholeheartedly with Julia! I am myself trying to learn to be less confrontational when I disagree with something or someone and your blog, Anna, is SO encouraging to me because you allow different viewpoints and argue them politely and in a lady-like fashion. You are an inspiration to me!

Anna S said...

Thank you, dear ladies! I do try very hard to keep all discussions on my blog civil and pleasant.

PhDCow said...

I agree that doing something is probably the best way to combat the blahs. For example, I'm not feeling too well today, but here I sit in my office. Just organizing some files and answering some e-mails has made me feel more productive and has improved my mood.

Also, I've got some Jimmy Buffett on and, unless I'm feeling particularly horrible, he always brightens my day.

- Angela

Anonymous said...

Too true, Anna. Some days are just meant to be quieter, for renewal & refreshment.

Brenda

USAincognito said...

Today is my "blah" day!! :) And I am taking full advantage of it by not doing a whole lot of anything. lol. ;)

Julie's Jewels said...

I'm having one of those blah days today myself. It is cloudy and rainy outside and is going to be like this for the next few days (I'm not complaining cause we need some rain desperately) so I'm expecting the next few days to be down days so-to-speak. I've already gotten a couple of things accomplished thus far and have much more to do. I don't "feel like" doing them but they need to be done so I just talk to the Father as I'm pondering not doing them and He helps me get them done.

Annaid said...

What a timely post for me! Thanks, Anna.

One thing that helps me get to work is to listen to audio books. I can do anything if I have something to distract me. I get lots of classics for free from the website librivox dot org.

PhDCow said...

Oh, and I just had to tell you that your advice is spot on and is exactly what my bipolar "survival guide" prescribes for "off" days.

Are you sure you're only in your twenties?

Mrs. Brigham said...

I always try to get outside for fresh air, regardless of the weather, when I am having a "blah day"; this really seems to help. Being outdoors also wakes you up very quickly, especially helpful when your "blah day" is caused by several night wakings with a little teether ;o)

Elizabeth said...

I'm glad I'm not the only person who has 'blah' days from time-to-time! Thank you for the unspoken-sympathy and the good advice! :->

PandaBean said...

Gee, I feel like I've been having a blah-month! We all had a cold here a while back and since then I feel like I've been running at half-capacity and I've only been able to get the basics done (laundry, dishes, meals, baby care, etc.).

I agree with you about doing even a little something. I DO NOT like putting away laundry, so I "make" myself put away a fist-full from the dryer everytime I walk by it. This does mean it takes me quite some time to get a load taken care of, but at least it's done and not sitting in the dryer holding up the loads in the washer and in the hampers waiting for me to just do it. :D

God Bless!

Terry said...

You're right, Anna. When I have a "blah" day, I make sure that I do something, anything, even if it's just one productive thing. I usually start to feel better right away which gives me the determination to do more.

Kelly said...

Great advice Anna. I need to really learn number 3!!!! I felt kind of blah the last few days. I was running around like a nut caring for my husband, who had a cold. I think I ran around too much because today I've gone from blah days to ick a cold!
It's really important to pay attention to blah days are they just pms? Like Rose mentioned. Or something like a cold coming on.
If I would have slowed down a bit the last few days I may not have been feeling so icky today.

Candy said...

Lovely post :)

Jordin said...

This advice is very welcome today--well, this week actually! I've had a "blah" week! One thing that has helped me is to NOT sit down and rest. On my blah days, if I sit down and relax, it takes a LONG time to get back up. :) I just try to work through the "blahs" by stepping outside for a breath of fresh air--or I'll make a phone call to my husband or a friend, just for a quick laugh or pick-me-up. And you can never go wrong with a cookie, either. :)

Brenda said...

You know research shows (but I just know it from experience) that opening windows to let natural sunlight in does wonders for blah days. Have you heard of that change of season depression? It's very real for some people and making sure to open curtains and blinds makes a big difference.

Anonymous said...

How I wish "blah" days came and went. With a chronic illness, you just described my life EVERY day.
:(

Erin said...

What a timely post! I was in the middle of the blah-est morning I can remember, still in my jammies (hadn't even made tea yet!!!) and dreading the tasks in front of me (and the longer I dreaded, the more formidable they seemed, so I dreaded some more...I was caught in quite a downward spiral!) and unable to find ANY motivation whatsoever.

Then I read today's post, hopped in the shower and started the beginnings of four loads of laundry!

Now, many hours later, all the laundry is done and smelling fresh from the clothesline, the bathroom is sparkling and the kitchen smells heavenly with a baking chicken, and all the vegetables prepped for their spin in the saute pan!

Thanks for your encouragement!

Rebekah S. said...

Thanks for the great tips!! I really liked #2 especially.

Jenny said...

Anna,
You are very insightful about what it means to be a homemaker. I just found your blog yesterday, but have already enjoyed reading many of your posts. Thank you for your encouraging words.

Karen said...

I like the way your cheerful outlook!

I had one of those blah days yesterday....and it WAS a cold coming on!

Rebekah S. said...

Having beautiful music playing (such as instrumental hymns), yummy smelling candles burning, pretty flowers beautifying the home, etc. makes for such a peaceful, cozy and homey atmosphere!