I am a sad burrito. Don’t touch, or engage with the raging beast.
No matter how cheerful and sappy we get on social media, that day comes around for everyone.
And no, I am not talking about the end of the month, I am talking about the day when you feel like curling yourself up into a ball and just roll away until all of your problems magically vanish.
I know my blue days so well, that I circle them in red on the calendar, because I believe they have their own unique cycle of screwing with my motivation and mental stability.
So I am never really taken by surprise; I patiently wait for that wave of sadness to crash onto my mind and flood me with self-doubts, repetitive winging and worrying bursts of ugly crying.
Getting through the feeling like absolute crap should be a useful skill to put on your resumé.
After years of therapy, hours of writing down my psychotic thoughts and feelings and butt pain from all the seated meditation and having to pull my life together because having a breakdown is not considered ‘cute’ in Italy, I can understand and share with you now that,
sadness doesn’t storm into our lives without an invitation. It’s not a RSVP-sad party, don’t get me wrong; sadness creeps into our days slowly, one hurtful comment and heartbreak at the time.
It might be not getting the job we desperately applied for, or it could be homesickness.
Whatever it is, it leaves a mark inside of you. It’s a path, which will continue existing every time our feelings get hurt and we are terrified of facing them.
That’s why we can’t sweep them under a rug and let them collect dust and grow mold inside of us. Because it will get harder and more streneous to overcome them.
We need to catch them fresh, when they are flying over our heads, pestering us like an annoying fly.
What to do then?
Glad you asked.
WAYS TO FEEL BETTER ABOUT YOUR DAY
💖 Move – And you’re going to be like: ‘Dude, how can running make me feel any better?’ Like Ellen Woods said in Legally Blonde, exercise releases endorphins, which makes you feel happier and more positive about your life, and happy people don’t kill anyone, so there you go!
💖 Hug a puppy, or watch videos of adorable puppies. Come on, nothing warms your heart more than a puppy falling off a chair.
💖 Tell somebody you know how much you appreciate them, or even love them. Expressing gratitude is a natural anti-depressant. (Watch this video about gratitude. You will cry. A lot.)
💖 Get a massage, or have your own spa day at home.
💖 Dance around the house to Beyoncé. I don’t know anybody who hasn’t smiled, or laughed after dancing to Grown Woman.
💖 Rap to Nicki Minaj’s verse in Monster and just absorb her power to fight through this day.
💖 Have your favorite kids movie marathon. (I was going to write have a harry potter marathon, but then I remembered that there are Muggles that actually haven’t even read, or *gasp* WATCHED Harry Potter).
My favorites: Matilda, James and The Giant Peach, Nightmare Before Christmas, The Lion King, Cinderella Story, Beetlejuice, Clueless, Mean Girls, Spy Kids, Jumanji.
💖 Make your own spa treatment: have a bubble bath with your favorite bath bombs, exfoliate that dry skin, massage and cuddle your legs. No body hate allowed. Only do this, if you’re feeling okay about your body being naked.
💖 Learn a new language. Learn how to flip someone off in Italian, say ‘I love you’ in Arabic, or tell a joke in German. My favorite language learning spots are Duolingo and Babbel.
💖 Write a journal. Let your thoughts vomit on a piece of paper; don’t control them, it’s meant to be a stream of consciousness. Try to write three full A-2 pages, before your hand goes into paralysis and you are out of metaphors.
💖 Go out on a date. By yourself. Have brunch; savour a coffee in solitude with a book, or people watching. If you dare even more, take yourself out to the movies; people find this somehow terrifying, I find it liberating eating the whole large popcorns by myself.
💖 Throw a costume party. Any excuse to dress up like a Minion will put a smile on your face. Plus, you’ll get a fun Facebook profile picture (I am joking, come on).
💖 Make a vision board, or a collage to gift to a friend. Grab those old magazines that have been collecting dust for months; flick through them and find a theme for your collage. It might be a friendship message, or a ‘no excuses, just do it’ collage you will stick to your face to keep yourself motivated. The result will be great and there is nothing better than getting your hands sticky with glue, cutting like a maniac, while listening to weird tunes.
💖 About those weird tunes. Listen to weird stuff and just move your limbs like a lizard; pretend like you’re some weird, powerful witch that has reincarnated into the body of a really sad person who has to get their shit together. (It works, I swear).
My favorite weird artists: Björk, FKA Twigs, David Bowie, The XX, Lorde, Massive Attack, Grimes, M.I.A, Marilyn Manson, Radiohead, Banks, Sia, Chet Faker, Amy Winehouse, Panic!At The Disco, My Chemical Romance, Lana Del Rey.
💖 Rearrange your room. No interior designing knowledge required: just do your laundry.
💖 Watch Eat, Pray, Love and let your feet itch from all the wanderlust it will overwhelm you with. Not to mention that it will make you want to hug Elizabeth Gilbert.
💖 Cook your favorite dish. Or simply, cook pasta. Every time I feel under the weather I cook my favorite pasta dish, and everything feels a tiny bit better.
💖 Watch a funny tv series. You can’t help, but feel a bit better when you are watching The Office, Parks & Rec, or The Mindy Project.
💖 Watch a horror movie to shake you up a bit and stir your emotions around. Why be scared about the future, when you can be poop in your pants from watching Annabelle?
💖 Play with the new Snapchat filters and share them with your friend. I beat my bad mood so many times thanks to that ridiculous mouse filter. (Sorry, friends).
💖 Avoid social media. I know that it’s tempting and you want to get distracted, but trust me, scrolling through your travelling friends on Instagram, or watching Zoella talking about her latest (sponsored) purchases will only make you feel like you are stuck in the same monochromatic dream. People have amazing and exciting lives when they are seen through the social media lens. Get over it.
💖 Avoid people who bring you down, or carry so much negativity with them. It’s okay, some people are not aware of their own negative energy, so it might be hard to turn down meeting up with them. But you have to think about yourself right now, and if somebody is taking more than contributing in your life, it’s not going to strenghten your friendship, nor yourself. So cancel with that friend, reschedule for another time. Explain that you need some time for yourself and, if they are good friends, they will understand.
💖 Plan a spontaneous trip. Sometimes we feel stuck in our lives because we live the same, repetitions of a routine that we have stuck around for years; so the simple act of taking off and going for an adventure, whether it’s around the corner, or to another county, will potentially break that cycle of overthinking, feeling yucky and jumping to irrational conclusions.
💖 Watch Ted Talks and share them with your friends. These two are my favorites.
💖 Watch a thought-provoking documentary. Reddit has an amazing page for documentaries.
💖 Speaking of documentaries, you should watch Planet Earth. David Attenbrough’s soothing and wise voice explaining how our planet works is so uplifting.
💖 Volounteer. Organise a charity party with your friends. Help somebody who needs a hand.
💖 Plan your goals for the month. Write them in so much details that procrastination won’t be able to squeeze through the cracks.
💖 Write a short-story, or a play.
💖 Listen to the audiobooks of your favorite authors.
💖 Take a nap. Not longer than 20 minutes though, or you will wake up feeling worse than before.
💖 Tell someone what you’re going through.
💖 Eat something you haven’t tried before.
💖 Look through your closets and select what is your style and what can be given away. Remember how much fun it was to dress up? Also, it is time to start thinking about how much waste our unused clothes collect.
💖 Look up your birth chart just for fun and giggles. (I believe in star signs, I do, I do).
💖 Go for a walk around your city by yourself and spot at least ten things that made you smile and ten things that you wish you could change.
💖 Write a letter to a friend.
💖 Skype with a friend who lives on the other side of the world.
💖 Come up with three business ideas that could increase your income and see if there is a market for them. It’s just a productive and healthy exercise that tricks your brain into thinking that you are actually working.
💖 Stretch and do some yoga. Hatha is probably the most suited style, as it will stretch your muscles and calm you down. But if you need a challenge to release the stress, Vinyasa and Ashtanga are perfect. Yoga with Adrienne is amazing for free Youtube videos, or support your local yoga centre to get out of the house.
💖 Jump in the water. It can be a shower, the pool, or the ocean. Having that connection with the water will release some of that unnerved mess we carry inside of us. (Here’s a beautiful explanation of the connection we have with the water element)
💖 Throw a Marissa Cooper and scream at the top of your lungs until you will actually feel better. Or just stomp your feet on the floor until you get what you want, that’s a Summer thing to do.
💖 Read your old journals and notice how your unique voice has changed. It will inspire you to change, or cringe. Nothing is more terrifying than reading your teenage emo ramblings.
💖 Get out of the house and take pictures. Or if photography isn’t your thing, draw; if that isn’t your thing either, sit down in a quiet spot and write, or sing about has grabbed your sight the most.
💖 Organise your personal finances. I know, yuck, right? But if you are like one of those people who need to do something productive to feel better about themselves, taking care of those overdue bills and credit card debts might help you release some of that stress. If you don’t know where to start, Ramit Sethi’s blog “I Will Teach You To Be Rich” is the place to start. Guy is to personal finance hacks as much as 50 Shades of Gray is to hideous literature.
💖 Go on Upworthy and let your heart melt into a pool of ‘awe’ and tears from the amazing things that people can do when they get their stuff together.
💖 Play board games, or any kind of game. I used to fight my anger management issues by spending hours playing The Sims. I would create a perfect family and create chaos, just to see them shaking their arms and talking gibberish to each other, until Death would come to collect them (always yawning and looking at the time); it may have shown psychopathic signs, but it did the trick!
Still not feeling your mood going up? Watch this.