Feeling like you are in a funk? Try these 10 things

I’m not sure what is happening- whether it is the holidays, cold weather, extra pie or business endeavors- but I feel out of whack. I am in a total funk with no rhythm or organization. If you are feeling this way too, lets’ get out of this weird spot together.

  1. Nature & dirt

Try to get out into nature and if you can play in some dirt. Dr. Young from Cornell University (2012) discusses that dirt will bind to toxins in our body and help us eliminate them, helping our bodies feel healthier. Nature itself has a calming affect on the brain, helping us settle anxieties and ruminating thoughts.

  1. Get creative

Get creative in any way that you can. Try painting or if you really want to shake things up- paint with your feet. Write a short story or just journal your adventures (even if the adventure is just to the grocery store). Mix up your routine with creative outlets to give your brain a break from the day to day grind.  

  1. Exercise

Although getting yourself going can be rough, it is important we give our bodies the opportunity to utilize the serotonin and dopamine bumps we get from exercise. Salmon (2001) reported that it is less about the over exerting your body and more about getting blood low moving and oxygen flowing.

  1. Clean up 

It always feels nice to walk into a room that is clean and comfortable. Taking time to make your living space clean and happy will make you feel more relaxed and focused. This is also a great time to have a long relaxing bath, paint your nails, and other hygiene tasks we can sometimes put off.

  1. Listen to music

And dance! Music has a huge impact on our sense of well being. Put on music that is uplifting and happy to you. Remember that your happy music may be vastly different than someone else’s. Try your best to get into it and let yourself be a little silly.  

  1. Be around people you love with no agenda

We call this mindful social interactions. Schedule time to be with someone you care about and try your best to be 100% present with them. Turn off your phone, focus in on your five senses, and enjoy the time you get with them.

  1. Give yourself a day to wander aimlessly

Often times we fight the funky feeling and try to keep moving on our daily tasks. This can lead to extra stress and frustration as your day continues to fight against you. Give in. Let yourself have a day where you don’t get anything done. Schedule things that you were going to do today for another day and give yourself a break.

  1. Random act of kindness

Nothing feels as good as doing something kind for someone else. This can be as big or as small as you feel able to do. Some examples are paying for someone else’s coffee, pay someone’s late fee, take out the garbage, or shovel someone else’s driveway. The big piece here is doing something for someone else without wanting/expecting anything in return.

  1. Gratitude

Let someone know how much they mean to you and how thankful you are that they are apart of your life. Just speaking or writing the words can help our mood in that we are focusing on all the good things in our life. It is always nice to take a moment and appreciate the positive aspects in our world.

  1. Be aware

This is the time that we are most susceptible to using the coping skills that are less healthy for us. These can be our weakest times and we can fall back into overeating

If you feel that you can not get yourself out of the ‘funk’, find help. Reaching out is not a sign of weakness, but of strength. We may think that we are dealing with a small low point, when in reality we could be dealing with depression or anxiety. Both of which benefit greatly with positive support and caring.

My Challenge to you: Try some of these techniques out and see what ones you benefit the most from. If you were able to get yourself out of the funk, note what was helpful and what was not for future use. Remember, it is always good to find supports to help you through difficult times. Take care of yourself and reach out for help if you need it.

Happy defunking friends!

– Jessie the Therapist

 

Photo by:Alice Achterhof

 

References:

Salmon, P (2001), ‘Effects of Physical Exercise on Anxiety, Depression and Sensitivity to Stress – A Unifying Theory.’, In Clinical Psychology Review, Vol.21, 1, , , pp.33-61. ISSN: 0272-7358

Young, Sera Ph.D (2012). The urge to eat dirt. Cornell University. http://wamc.org/post/dr-sera-young-cornell-university-urge-eat-dirt

Jessie Shepherd is a Mental Health Counselor and owner of Blue Clover Therapy in Utah. She has a Masters Degree in Mental Health Counseling from the University of Phoenix and a Bachelors degree in Psychology from the University of Utah. Her focus is treating trauma, eating disorders and adjustment issues in adults, adolescents, children and their families. She utilizes Dialectic Behavioral Therapy (DBT), Play Therapy, Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) and Neurological Feedback.

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