Let me guess: When you’re in a bad mood, you want to stay in a bad mood. Forget about all the good things going on. There are wayyyy too many bad things, right? And forget about all those people trying to help. They definitely don’t understand. Am I right?
Of course I’m right. You’re reading my blog. That means you think the way I think. When I’m in a bad mood, I like to stay this way for a good three to six hours (at least). I’ve gotten pretty good at this. And because I’m a nice person, I’d like to share with you how to stay in this bad mood in three simple steps:
1) Spend hours focusing on all the negatives in your life that you can’t control.
Two weeks ago I was panicking. I was waiting on several paychecks that weren’t showing up as quick as I wanted them to. Each time I arrived to an empty mailbox, I got angry and upset.
I’ll say that again: I was letting my mail carrier be the determining factor over whether or not I went to bed happy. Should you find yourself in a similar situation, congratulations! You’ve accomplished step one and may proceed.
2) Spend tonight focusing on all of the things you didn’t get done today.
Remember that time you woke up thinking about how great today was going to be? You had a list of things you were ready to knock out. Once they got done, you’d feel accomplished and awesome.
…that was this morning. You got one of them done. Maybe two. WOW. That’s a failure if I ever heard of one.
I’ve done this more times than I can count this month. “Today sucked. I suck. And tomorrow will probably suck too. Guess there’s nothing left to do except sit and sulk for another hour before I go to bed.”
(If and only if you have mastered the “sit and sulk” concept, may you proceed to step three.)
3) Avoid any and all steps – especially baby steps that will eventually lead to bigger ones – that could better your situation.
Don’t make a list. Don’t clear off your desk. Don’t check your calendar and find that one window tomorrow where you know you can be productive. That’s the opposite of what we want. Rather, focus on the money you don’t have. Focus on the time you don’t have. Focus on the jobs you haven’t gotten. Anything that could better your situation right now means you failed, and steps one and two were all for nothing.
STAY ANGRY! (Don’t look at smiling Graham. He’s not angry….neither is Jason M Hammond who took this photo….)
….Though I suppose it wouldn’t be fair unless we at least glanced at the other side of things.
Know that Courtney Rioux I keep mentioning? If you go to her website at www.courtneyriouxcoaching.com, you’ll find you can both sign up for her blog, plus receive a free thirty minute audio titled, “How to Be Happy No Matter What Life Throws at You.” (But definitely don’t listen to this if you want to master all three steps I just mentioned.)
I’m paraphrasing here – there’s an example Courtney gives of someone getting upset as they realize they forgot their wallet at Starbucks. Because they’re so frustrated, they don’t even notice the person behind him in line offering to pay for their coffee.
My question to you is this: What positives are you missing because you’re too busy focusing on how “good” it feels being stressed and cranky?
I had NO idea that guy behind me was there. (Though I’m sure photographer Dan Patton from reelchicago.com did….)
We’re not perfect. We’re going to “fail” with our agendas and our emotions. But we don’t need to beat ourselves up each time it happens. There’s always going to be positives around us, even if we can’t see them.
Start looking for them today.