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Anti-Misery Strategies - Body by Henson, brain by Seuss. [entries|archive|friends|userinfo]
Kelly J. Cooper

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Anti-Misery Strategies [Oct. 22nd, 2008|04:17 am]
Kelly J. Cooper

Last week, I asked ya'll for your favorite way to fend off the badness and ronebofh noted that I hadn't mentioned my "usual strategies" (which I'd written weren't working).

Partly that's cuz I haven't done a particularly good job of organizing my usual strategies so I can run through them when I start feeling bad. And partly cuz I was feeling so bad my mind went kinda blank.

Unfortunately, the list is kinda sparse (and in no particular order):

1. Look at pictures of puppies, kittens, and other baby animals
2. Think about one of my trips - really put myself there, remembering smells and tastes, looking through my trip journals and pictures - to shift my brain into a happy place
3. Remember that my brain could be creating a feedback loop & stop thinking about the badness (think about other stuff instead)
4. Talk to my friends - preferably in person
5. Sugar
6. Hug the BF
7. Retail therapy - especially a new book

I forgot all but the first three last week, tho' to be fair the BF was asleep, as my friends probably were as well, & it was too late for the tactile elements of retail therapy... and... baby animals weren't cuttin' it and... I didn't have the energy to think about a trip and... and...

I have some others, I think... um... written down... someplace...

So, yeah, I need to make a more coherent list. And a little plan for when my brain gets too sad to deal so I can run through these things. A plan like, "Ut-oh! Sadness! Hey, look at the list taped to the wall!"

Anyway, as I've been typing this, I've been switching back & forth to a Word file, and the list combining my strategies and all of yours is up to 26 things! GO US!

Upshot: thank you all for sharing your ideas. They helped and will continue to help.

[User Picture]From: miss_chance
2008-10-22 08:49 am (UTC)
Posting your list helps me think about this in different ways. I notice almost all the things you list happen fromm your neck up. For me, when I have the Funk, it means the inside of my head isn't really a good place to be, so I try to get out of it for a while. So my list includes (in addition to looking at pitures of kittens, because OMG teh cute), visiting live kittens (when possible), going for a long walk, taking a really hot shower, going for a bike ride, taking the pitch-fork to the compost, raking leaves, making stuff with my hands... anything that takes that undefinable thing that is "me" and moves it out of the stinky, gray, squishy area and into other areas for which it's also paying rent and to which it has full rights. I think of it as something like cabin-fever-of the spirit, trapped in the skull. If you can figure out how to figuratively "leave the windows open" while you're gone, sometimes you come back to an nicer, aired out place.

I don't know if this helps any, but remembering that I'm a lot more than a brain-on-a-stick helps me a lot.
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[User Picture]From: kjc
2008-10-22 08:54 am (UTC)
Good point. And on a lot of people's lists were things like "shower" and "go for a walk" and "go on a short trip" and "exercise." As it happens, I did exercise that morning and it helped, as did a shower and getting out of the house.

One of my problems is that my body betrays me in so many interesting (physical) ways that it's pretty much never at the top of my list; I don't think about getting it moving as a repair strategy, and I should.
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[User Picture]From: lillibet
2008-10-22 01:19 pm (UTC)
David Wilcox has a good list in one of his songs: eat some broccoli, take a nap, run a mile, take a shower. I usually run through that one when I start getting down.

Another thing that helps me is to do the 15-minute task thing. Not "I'm going to clean my desk" (way too overwhelming, I should have done it a month ago, very depressing) but "I'm going to work on my desk for 15 minutes".

Lastly, if you want to either visit or borrow Alice, you are always welcome to do that. Her giggles are pure energy and can make most other things seem unimportant for the duration. She might even take you to the playground and I bet you haven't gone down a slide in too long.
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[User Picture]From: metagnat
2008-10-22 01:08 pm (UTC)
I'd love to see a copy of the combined list of everyone's strategies.

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[User Picture]From: laurenpburka
2008-10-22 07:20 pm (UTC)
Chocolate. Specifically, begin a series of taste tests of single-source, estate-grown chocolate bars available from your local politically correct grocer. Whole Foods even has a Venezuelan bar, and I thought the Venezuelans didn't sell to America.

Look at cat macros.

Get a book from the library. Amazingly in this changing and difficult world, libraries are still free.

Learn to knit or crochet. Make goofy hats for all your friends. (FYI if you did want to learn, I have a ton of yarn I bought that I'm not using. This happens to most new knitters, and we get creative ditching some of it later.)

Make non-goofy hats by the method of your choice for homeless people.

Send stuff to soldiers. Site anysoldier.com will help with this. If you think candy makes you happy, imagine being in the middle of some forsaken part of Afghanistan and opening up a box full of Hershey's Miniatures. (note: I did get a thank you back from one company I sent stuff to, but not the other. Some companies aren't even allowed to say anything about where they are or what they are doing, or are basically too busy getting shot at to reply. So your gratification may be mostly internal.)
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