“Men have mood swings. Women have mood leaps, mood swirls, mood loop-de-loops.” ―
When was the last bad mood you got stuck in?
Do you remember the cause? Probably ended up with the same old effects, right?
I recently got in a bad mood. It helped me to think about time I had just spent with a friend. His life is a great example about how to put the ups and downs of circumstances into a healthy perspective. Our interaction was a blessing.
Falling into a bad mood can happen suddenly because of a change, a sharp word, a mean decision or disastrous change in circumstances. You know what brings those nasty feelings to your own insides. There can be emotional, physical and even spiritual symptoms of bad moods. How does a bad mood show up in your life?
“Rain clouds and stormy moods take time to blow away, but sooner or later the sun always comes out.” ―
When those foul storms strike – what are the options? How do you get in out of the rain and protect your soul from ruin?
Don’t sit and percolate in your stew of bad mood, find a way forward:
- It always helps to feel like you’re doing something. Pull out your journal and start writing. Getting some of your thoughts out, organized into words and then seeing them in print always helps. You can move out of your frustrated state and accomplish something and, you can clarify foggy feelings.
- Find a friend who will listen. Sometimes we all just need to talk it out. Be careful. Some friends will listen for a little, then they want to help with a solution. Mostly what you need is just to be heard. To pour OUT those feelings that can be like poison.
- Isn’t there some wisdom in your life, like a fence post, that you can hang on to during turbulent windstorms? I keep thinking about turning the other cheek and praying for enemies – the exact opposite of how I typically feel when I’m bent out of shape by someone out to get me!
- How about taking a nice long walk?
- I had an aunt who would bake cookies when she was moody. We always knew as we entered the door and smelled the wonderful aroma of baking that we needed to not just wolf down the baked goods, but spend some time listening.
- Stop and take a longer view. I come home today and am in a bad mood because of late afternoon situations and interactions. I have to consciously stop and remember my whole day – that earlier interaction with the dear friend. The wiser choice is to remember my longer journey and how God works so faithfully.
“Learning brings a lighter mood and restores your energy. The simple shift from blaming to learning is tremendously empowering.” ―
Remember that humans have biases in their thinking. We have what’s called a Confirmation Bias – we end up seeing only what we are looking for. So if we believe everyone is out to get us – that’s all we notice. Do you see how this can contribute to distorted moods?
There’s also what’s called a Hindsight Bias. People reflect on past events and believe they just knew things would turn out the way they did. We tend to believe in our prophetic abilities – but after the fact! When stewing in a bad mood, people often rehearse the past and piece it together in a way to make their anger or disappointment predictable.
“Mood isn’t a particular thought or a particular part of the brain, nor in a particular part of the body, such as a foot or an ear, it is everywhere, but nothing in itself, more like a colour in which thoughts are thought, a colour through which the world is seen.” ―
Have you got a bad mood strategy figured out yet?
Do you know how to help someone close to you overcome their out of sorts mood?
What about becoming someone who’s less reactive to others and events and more in command of who you are – deep inside? Got that figured out yet?
“The enemy is within the gates; it is with our own luxury, our own folly, our own criminality that we have to contend.” ―