I am generally a happy, positive-attitude kind of person. I am thankful every day for the blessed life I have. I am healthy, have an awesome family, incredible friends, a good job, and a beautiful home. Is my life perfect? Well no, but I like to believe that achieving perfection would lead to boredom.
However…. This is a blog about being Real Women. And every now and then all Real Women, even the Pollyannas among us, have crappy days. It is true that I have a low tolerance for complainers; but admitting that we have some bad days is ok. It makes us human.
There are about a million reasons why we may feel cruddy on any given day — and at least in my experience, a yucky day is often set off by something that in the grand scheme is truly minor. Our moods can plummet because we are running late, we spill our coffee, our pet gets sick on the rug, we have a disagreement with a loved one, we have a bad hair day, get a cranky person on a work call, or it is raining. Yes, relatively trivial matters can take the pep out of our step in a heartbeat.
I think our worst days happen because something, somehow has caused us to lose confidence in ourselves. We can handle any goofy thing that gets thrown at us when we are feeling confident and strong. But put a notch in that armor and all bets are off.
Let me give you an example. This morning I was feeling pretty good about the outfit I threw on, was having a decent hair day considering 92% humidity, and the morning routine had gone smoothly. I got into my car, backed out into the driveway, went to adjust my rearview mirror, and there they were. Bright new white hairs on my head. I should know better than to ever look at myself in that mirror. Thanks to the daylight streaming in and the closeness, that mirror is where all sorts of things come into view, literally. Like new wrinkles, make-up smudges, and in this case, white or grey hair. Rather than ignore the mirror, I looked. Then I couldn’t stop looking, and started obsessing.
By the time I completed my 15 minute ride to work, I had worked myself into a near panic. How did I get this old this fast? I’m trying to take care of myself, stay healthy, but I’m still get wrinkles, belly buldge, spider veins, white hair sprouts. Are my sexy young days truly over? The other day I attempted to squat down to look at a lower shelf in the grocery store and wasn’t sure if I could get back up again. Oh no. If the first 40+ (ok, nearly 50) years went this fast, what about the next 30+? I still have so much I want to do, places I want to go, I can’t be old yet! Am I really doing everything I want and should be doing with my life? Should I be trying harder to figure out what I really want to do professionally and personally for the rest of my life? And so it went….
Of course from there anything else for my day seemed that much more challenging… it started raining. I needed to have a couple of conversations I was dreading. I discovered that I had completely forgotten about a scheduled online chat with a couple of BFFs the night before. I felt sluggish and tired. I was starting to feel overwhelmed with things I needed to get done. I was missing some of my friends and family members. And voila, I had worked myself into a bad day.
But here’s the funny thing. As the day progressed, the gloom started to lift. Quite literally the rain stopped and the sun came out. Those conversations ended up not being so bad. I received some emails that made me smile. Someone gave me a compliment. Best of all, in the lighting in the office bathroom, my white hairs virtually disappeared.
Over the course of the day, I started to talk myself off the irrational cliff I had climbed upon. Sure, some of my thoughts and concerns are real, but I don’t have to conquer my fear of aging, plan my next 15 years of my career and give myself a makeover all in one morning. I calmed down – but rather than reprimand myself for feeling blue, I gave myself permission to have a bad day. After all, shouldn’t we all cut ourselves just a little bit of slack every now and then?
Just as long as I get back in the groove and start over fresh tomorrow…because no one likes a whiner.