Thursday, August 11, 2011

What To Do When You're Sad And Blue

Try a walk outdoors - view of a waterfall near Shoestring Cottage

We seem to have had more than usual to cope with in the last year year, with all the fires and flooding in Australia, the mining disaster and earthquakes in New Zealand and the terrible events unfolding in Japan.  Now there are the riots in England and the continuing global financial crises.  Our little corner of the world may have been subjected to more than its fair share of unfortunate events and it we can begin to feel rather overwhelmed by things.  Here are some of the things friends have tried in the past in order to jolly myself along, they may not work for you but could be worth a little thought if you are feeling despondent.  Here goes then, in no particular order. 

  1. Do something for somebody else.  This sounds a bit odd when you are the one needing comfort but even a small “good deed” can lift you up.  I don’t know whether it is the fact that it takes your mind off your problems for a while, makes you feel positive about yourself or whether it is the pleasure you have given to another person but it can be very gratifying and helpful.  Obviously it needn’t be a major good deed, just something small. 
  2. Do something for yourself.  Not a major financial commitment and not something you will regret later such as eating/drinking too much!  Something which will give you pleasure and which you may not usually make time for.  Whatever you feel the desire for, a manicure or a lazy soak in the bath, some little treat you wouldn’t usually indulge in. 
  3. Count your blessings.  You may not feel as if there are any blessings to be counted, but once you get started you will be surprised how many there are.  Maybe even write a list of them.  While you are at it, praise yourself for all your good qualities.    
  4. Get some exercise.  If you are physically tired at the end of the day it is easier to sleep and sometimes just a good brisk walk is enough to get the oxygenated blood pumping and lift your mood.  Also if you are out of doors while you get your exercise then so much the better, you can look at the beauties of nature and enjoy them.  Really look around you even if you are in a familiar location, and look for signs of the changing seasons and interesting wildlife.   
  5. Tidy something up.  (Don’t make this too overwhelming or take on a huge task.)  It could just be one small job you have been putting off such as a drawer where miscellaneous pieces of junk always seem to accumulate but you will get a sense of accomplishment when you are finished.  This is particularly helpful if you are feeling overwhelmed by things.     
  6. Make a list of things which might be causing you to feel “blue”.  Are they problems which can be solved?  We sometimes are not even aware of what is causing us to feel unlike our usual selves and once we pinpoint the problem we can work towards finding a solution.  Also once your problems are identified they may seem more manageable and maybe even less significant.
  7. If all else fails take yourself to a completely different place.  You don’t need to do this physically.  Use a bit of escapism.  Read a book about a different time/place/culture.  Watch your favourite chick flick DVD, even if you know the script off by heart.  It can almost be like taking a break from your reality and having a holiday in another place for short time.  


  1. Great advice and I have tried each and every one of those and they all work! I think it is hard for some folks to get motivated to do any of those things, but I sometimes think you must just DO, even if you aren't up to it. Then you begin to feel better! Nice post.

  2. Thanks for those kind words Egretta, glad that you liked the post. Good point about just DO even if you aren't up to it too. One of my friends says, "Fake it till you make it" and there is a lot to be said for that approach sometimes!