This week has been a shocker in every way imaginable. There’s a huge reorganisation going on at work, I’ve had a few issues with my health, I haven’t been sleeping too well, wedmin has proven to be a real headache and I’ve felt massively homesick following ten perfect days back in the UK and a lovely weekend in Oman.
If this wasn’t enough, the devastating news of the earthquake that hit Nepal on Saturday completely rocked me, not least because I’ve been working closely with some of the local communities there. Right now though, there is little more that I can personally do other than help any way I can with the fundraising effort at work, and donate myself.* Which means that there’s been nothing else for it other than to pick myself up out of my funk and just get on with things.
And here is how I’ve managed it. It’s a pretty simple formula really, and I hope it works for you too!
1. Go for a walk in some green space
It’s been scientifically proven that spending time with nature is good for the heart and soul. When green grass and trees are combined with a brisk walk to get the endorphins pumping, not even the most miserable amongst us can remain in a grump for long.
Even in the centre of the city of Doha, which is slap bang in the middle of the Arabian Desert, Rich and I managed to seek out a patch of green to have a good stomp around on Saturday.
2. Put on some happy music and dance
Rich and I have been choosing our wedding music this week, which has meant plenty of crooning and bopping along to upbeat classics such as N-Sync’s “Bye Bye Bye”. If you ever meet Rich, ask him to show you his fist-pump move to the chorus of this song. That alone will bring you out of any bad mood you might be experiencing.
(And in case you were wondering, we are not just playing boyband hits from the Noughties at this wedding…let’s just say, the playlist is ‘eclectic’).
3. Look ahead to the fun times
Can you remember the last time that you had absolutely nothing fun to look forward to at all? No, me neither. It might be a celebration such as a birthday or wedding, a holiday or reunion with an old friend. It might be something as simple as a meal in a restaurant you love or a day off work. Whatever it is, throw yourself into it. Plot and plan and live that moment until it comes. And as soon as it has passed, look forward to the next one.
While wedding planning has been a complete pain in the … this week, little things like our invitations arriving have made it all feel so real and exciting! And for just a while I forgot about everything else.
4. Talk to people you love and who love you
Yesterday I got home from work, plonked down on the sofa and cried. After a few minutes of feeling utterly sorry for myself, I picked up my phone, texted my four bridesmaids and offloaded everything I was feeling. Within 40 seconds, I was feeling a lot better. Ten minutes later, I was wondering what the hell I was so upset about in the first place. There are certain people in your life that just ‘get’ you and somehow manage to cheer you up with just a few supportive words (and terrible jokes). Hang on to these people. You’re going to need them.
5. Hang out with someone who makes you LOL
For me, this person always has been, and always will be Rich. I don’t think I’ve ever met someone who can make me laugh from right in the pit of my stomach, so that it actually hurts before. Take earlier in the supermarket. I was carefully assessing the sponges in the homeware section (as you do), and Rich came up behind me with two huge, what can only be described as buckets of Nutella, and said “These should last us about a week!” (also, did I mention his dancing?!).
6. Have a bit of ‘me time’
Paint your nails, run a bath, read a book, do whatever makes you feel completely relaxed and happy just being you.
Look after you so that you can get back to looking after everyone else around you. Because if you’re anything like me then that is what makes you happiest of all.
(NB. if all above fails then there is always wine).
*If you feel a bit helpless and would like to donate a little bit to help in the wake of the terrible tragedy in Nepal, then Lou has included some great charities that you can go through at the end of this post. I would also recommend Mercy Corps in Nepal who I have worked alongside for 18 months now and who are highly skilled at this kind of emergency response. Did you know that just 50 GBP can provide food and water for a family of 5 for an entire month?!