Have you ever been in a major “funk”? Another way to think about it would be like you’re down in the dumps, feeling the blues, or just not feeling like yourself for an extended period of time. It’s perfectly normal to experience a funk, but our culture of social media has created a world where we’re only supposed to show the best parts of ourselves. The “highlight reel”, if you will.
I’ve personally been in a funk for several months. I tend to feel the blues during the winter months due to the lack of sunshine and my aversion to the cold, but this year it only slightly improved with the added sunshine of Spring. Before I recognized what was going on, I generally felt discombobulated and unsure about my path. Like things just weren’t quite clicking into place. I gave myself space to sit in the funk for a while, before naturally recognizing it was time to pull myself out of it.
Now that I’ve gone through this process of pulling myself out of a funk, I’m able to see what’s really going on: I’m experiencing a time of great transformation in my life. What an amazing unlock!!! Instead of continuing to sit in an unsettling space, I have the gift of a fresh lens to look through. With a deeper understanding of myself, I’m able to show myself grace, and navigate life in ways that work for me.
Throughout this phase, I’ve focused on the following 5 choices to pull myself out of it:
1. Analyze and discover
Become present with yourself and ask yourself questions to discover what’s at the core of this funk. Is this a temporary state, or has it been feeling this way for a while? Could digging into this funk create a growth opportunity, or is it time to walk away? Do you have power to create change in this scenario, or is this a toxic environment?
Maybe something feels off with a relationship in your life, or you aren’t growing at work like you expected. Maybe you haven’t had the desire to work out recently, or things just generally feel bleh. You may not know the root cause at first, but asking yourself questions could help you get there.
A way I like to become present with myself is to journal, stream of consciousness style, for a set amount of time. Many times I’m surprised by what comes up for me when I take a few minutes out of my day to listen into my inner voice and let my thoughts flow without judgment. Another option could be to take a break for yourself. Get away for a weekend, or even take a long hike by yourself. Take some time to be in nature and let your brain breathe for a bit. Whatever you decide to do, be sure to ask yourself the hard questions, and don’t judge yourself for what comes up.
Many times I’m surprised by what comes up for me when I take a few minutes out of my day to listen into my inner voice and let my thoughts flow without judgment.
2. Talk to your people
You know that person, or group of friends, who keeps you honest in your life? It might be time to bring them into the fold and fill them in on some of the things you’re discovering and thinking about. They might have a great perspective to share with you! As a HUGE introvert, that list of people for me is quite short. But when I need advice, I know who to go to.
I tend to find a lot of value from hearing an outsider’s perspective when I’m uncertain, so I also regularly see a therapist/life coach! She talks me through how to move forward in areas of my life, and challenges the heck out of me. She also points me back to myself, and encourages me to trust my intuition.
3. Remove yourself or create boundaries
When things, people, or environments cause you to feel like a lesser version of yourself, it may be time to either remove yourself, or create some healthy boundaries. Many times we carry heavy things because we feel like we have to, or it’s the “nice” thing to do. But here’s the thing… if you’re kind to yourself and others, you shouldn’t need to carry such heavy loads. If you are vocalizing what you need, but continue to run into the same walls over and over, it may be time to reevaluate if things are working for you.
To be clear, I’m not suggesting to run away from every hard moment in life. But there’s no need to unnecessarily keep yourself in a frustrating scenario. Sometimes it could even take a simple adjustment to your day to day to lighten up your load.
If you are vocalizing what you need, but continue to run into the same walls over and over, it may be time to reevaluate if things are working for you.
4. Focus on, and surround yourself with, the good
There’s too much good in this world to get stuck in negativity that only feeds into a downward spiral. Once you’ve created healthy boundaries, take some time to focus on the good things you have in your life. Even if everything feels hard or weird, there’s always something to be grateful for.
I can tend to get stuck in ruts and lose sight of the joys of life, and I’ve come to learn I’m a more balanced person when I surround myself with positivity and lightness. Here are a few things that work for me:
- It may sound silly, but something I like to do is follow puppy accounts that I can quickly access in a low moment. Those little fluff balls never let me down!
- I read articles that lift me up, and follow people/groups on social media who inspire me. I recently read this article for 12 Easy Ways to Practice Self Care at Work from Glitter Guide, for example.
- I create opportunities to laugh at myself! Recently I ran out of gas as I was about to leave my house to run errands. I definitely could have gotten super frustrated, but in that moment I chose to laugh at myself instead. What responsible adult runs out of gas 50 feet from their house?!
5. Take care of yourself
Self care is a trendy subject right now, and sometimes even has a negative connotation. But just because you take care of yourself, doesn’t make you vain or self absorbed! Sometimes taking care of yourself could be as simple as listening to a podcast on your way to work, because you know it inspires you before starting your day. Or declining a social invitation when you recognize you need a night to yourself. Self care doesn’t have to be bougie, or grandiose; but no judgment if a good old fashioned “treat yo self” day is in order!
I take the best care of myself when I’m being active, eating well, spending time with people I love, and maintaining rituals that feed my soul. Many of my rituals are made possible through the products I have listed on my products page – taking supplements to support what my body is asking for, naturally taking care of my skin, reading books that fill me up, etc.
This has been my process of working through a “funk” in my life. How do you handle when things aren’t clicking into place, or are feeling off?