10 Ways to Boost Your Mood

Saturday, September 8, 2018

Over Labor Day weekend, I was mentally under the weather.  Sometimes, I hit these moods where everything seems useless, a waste of time, and unnecessary.  Getting off the couch takes physical exertion I don't have.  My mind goes foggy.  My boyfriend dragged me to the supermarket because I was so unmotivated to cook that I was up for eating the couch cushions.

I can't control these moods.  They come and go at the most frustrating times. I think of them like colds; when you have a cold you have to boost your immune system.  When I'm in a funk, the only way for me to fight back is to boost my mood.  Here are 10 ways that have worked to break me out of the cycle.

1. Exercise
It seems so simple, but honestly moving from the couch, changing into workout clothes, walking to gym (there are TWO in my building) is more energy than I'm willing to dole out.  So, I don't go far.  I play a yoga Youtube video to start.  Later in the day, heading to the gym is just a little bit easier.  But I make it necessary to go even though there are lots of bad thoughts battling inside my head.  Even if my workout sessions last 20 minutes, I've started to loosen up my mood and making me far more receptive to lifting my thoughts.

2. Reading
When I'm in a bad mood, I'm so into my own head and what's going on in my life that I desperately need a break.  So how do you get outside of your head?  TV and movies might seem like a quick fix, but I tend to surf my phone and not actually pay attention to the movie I'm supposed to be watching.  Plus, the director already created a scene for me.  My job is to sit staring at the story in front of me; I'm not engaged.  With reading, the set manager, costume designer, and director roles all fall to me.  I'm transported to another world that completely knocks out a lot of the icky feelings I'm going through.

3. Listening to Music/Dancing
As a wannabe writer and reseller, creativity calls to me.  Listening to music (not emo music even though it's my fave) that is upbeat and fun forces me to my feet.  Sometimes, I'm so inspired by the creative work of the artist that it actually gets my juices flowing. Other times, when I just can't get into it I start dancing.  In front of the sink, on the rug, in the hallway - just dance.

4. Bubble Bath
Okay, I know that seems more like a self-care option but let me tell you why this is a great way to boost your mood. Sitting in a tub of hot water allows you to calm down.  There are tons of health benefits, but steaming in the bathroom really refreshes your body and mind.  You can listen to music or even read to double up on some options. By the time you towel  off, you'll have an entirely new perspective. 

5. Having a List of Things That Make You Laugh
...which I happen to have right here. When I'm down, these 4 always make laugh - and laughing is the first step to getting out of a bad mood. Scroll the Humor section on Pinterest or have your own list ready so you can beat your down day.

6. Get Dressed
It is soooo tempting to stay in your PJ's - BUT GET UP PUT ON SOME CLOTHES AND DO YOUR HAIR, FRIEND. A little harsh with the caps lock on, but getting yourself prepared for the day, even if your day is starting at 6PM and you are going nowhere.  Putting clothes on will not only lift your mood, but is a tiny accomplishment to push you forward.

7. Call a grandparent (or friend).
Talking with my Grandpa always perks me up.  I lived with him for three years and hearing from him really puts my bad mood into perspective.  Plus, I know he's lonely so hearing from me puts him in a good mood too.  If you aren't close with your grandparent, this is an opportunity to try to become close.  If you're grandparents are no longer living, then try calling someone who would really appreciate hearing from you.  If someone is excited to talk to you, that energy is transferable.  And hey, Debbie Downer - there is always someone excited to talk to you.  Fact - don't let your brain fool you on this one.

8. Smile at Yourself in the Mirror
Ridiculous, right? Try it. You'll feel silly, goofy, and downright stupid for the first 30 seconds but push through for five full minutes.  Even fake laugh!  Fake it 'til you make it.

9. Play a musical instrument.
For me, it's the piano.  I'm self-taught so I am not skilled.  Pick up a new instrument and self-teach yourself. I play the same song over and over (Don't Wanna Miss a Thing - Aerosmith) but each time I play it transports me from my worries and stress and all I can do is focus in on the notes.

10. Look at Pictures of Baby Animals
To be honest, this is my "when all else fails" option. Usually, I start looking at picture of really cute baby animals and eventually find myself looking at pictures of my cat Charlie when she was a kitten.  It brings back good memories and reminds me of that time in my life when I really, really needed her.  Looking at pictures of babies reminds you that there's always a fresh start on the horizon.

Let me know if you try out any of these options, and stay well my friend.

Reselling Lessons I Learned From Lorelai Gilmore

Friday, September 7, 2018

Lorelai Gilmore, a woman with a dream to one day own an inn - and she did!  She was a girl boss back when hashtags only stood for the number sign on your phone.  On top of being a single mom, she hustled her way into achieving her dreams when no one believed she could.  While she can be problematic in terms of her romantic liaisons, that's part of the humanistic features that make up this character.  She isn't perfect, her business is hard and long-fought for.  No matter what though, she always keeps pushing through.

Watching a rerun the other day, I thought about how a lot of Lorelai's advice could be applied to a lot of topics within the reselling community.

Don't Ask for Answers, Find Them
Too often, within the community, I see other resellers hounding "larger" resellers to tell them where to buy, what to buy, what price to buy at, and other information that is through tried and true experience.  Reselling is a hustle and a side job for most, but it's still a job.  It is certainly not a get rich quick scheme.  Expecting other people to hold my hand and tell me exactly what to do takes out the reward at the end.  If someone tells me what to do, then I work for them, not myself.  There's no pride in that.  If I want it, I have to work for it.  Shortcuts are nice, but there's a lot you miss when you take that shortcut including valuable lessons that could provide a basis for launching larger opportunities in the future.

Ride The Wave
Not everything goes according to plan.  Finding a Kate Spade dress out in the wild doesn't mean it will sell for full asking price the first week...or first month. Reselling is a constant journey and being within the fashion world it means that trends are consistently evolving.  Staying on top of those trends is key and I have to be able to shrug my shoulders when something I was sure was going to be hit, just quite isn't.  Then, I need to buckle down and do some more studying.

Take Time Off
I'm guilty of working to the point of burn out.  After I burn out, the next three days are a foggy haze in which nothing gets done and all of the hard work I previously accomplished is absolutely wasted. It's not healthy or productive for my business.  Taking time off, grabbing a cup of coffee with a friend, and ignoring my Poshmark notifications for a few hours do me a world of good.

Just Go
Being a reseller, even admitting that I resell clothing online, makes me feel vulnerable to.  I understand that it doesn't feel like a solid career choice and could sound a little crazy, but it feeds my soul.  I don't know where I'm headed on this journey, but I'm headed somewhere and that's much further than most people.

Summer Reflection

Tuesday, September 4, 2018

On the bus the other day, we passed an older Victorian home overflowing with a variety trees.  I noticed for the first time that some leaves fell and were piled up at the end of the driveway.  I hung my head. It's already begun.

The nights are cooler. There is no longer that humidity that demands refreshment near a pool.  Sweaters on Poshmark are starting to sell out and my Pinterest feed turns into a pumpkin scarf thigh-high boot filled autumn wonderland.

I'm not ready to let summer go.

This was the last summer in my twenties.  It was the last summer without a little baby girl running around, truly bonding my brother and sister-in-law for life.  This little being, who shares my own DNA, will magically appear just as summer turns into fall.  This will always be "the time before her."  I'm excited for her arrival, but I know that life has a balance.  With birth, something else has to die.

I managed to snag a few days in the sun, in between church festivals, a baby shower, traveling to Utah and Colorado, and in general running around so much I didn't notice summer was over.  But the kids are back to school and another year passes.  My Summer Bucket List lays crumpled in the trash can, none of the items checked off.

Is it silly to say I wanted this summer to be something bigger than it was? I wanted this last larger than live experience to close out my twenties.  I've tried it before.  When I was turning 20, I saw the death of my teen years and that month before I ran around Manhattan until dawn, getting my ear pierced by a shady guy so high he couldn't remember the last time he slept, train hopping, watching my friends sake bomb in places that didn't check IDs, and making decisions I thought were bad enough to justify as a teenager.  I also blew a LOT of money.

There's also this other part of me that wants my twenties to die slowly, as subtly as when you first realize the days aren't quite as long as they used to be.  I floated through a lot of my twenties, mostly on the arm of some guy I knew I shouldn't be with.  I spent way too much of it daydreaming.  I used to think daydreaming was a fantastic skill to keep my brain running creatively, but I'm now realizing I spent too much of my time waiting for things to happen instead of doing anything at all.

When I look at my thirties, I don't see the burning heat of a summer sun but a cozy spring morning wet with dew.  I don't want to give up on summer, but maybe summer's letting me go so that I can huddle inside for a while.  I need to learn what drives me, what makes me want to chase the sun.  I've been baking underneath it too long.

A few weeks ago, I took my boyfriend to see Dashboard Confessional (his first concert ever, clearly he lives under a rock).  So to complete my mourning over my summer loss, we'll appropriately end with the song I've listened to at the end of every August since 2004.

So long sweet summer,
I stumbled upon you and gratefully basked in your rays.
So long sweet slumber.
I fell into you now you're gracefully falling away...

July & August Reads

Saturday, September 1, 2018

The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time
by Mark Haddon
This has been on my TBR for quite some time so I was really excited to dive right in.  I was not disappointed.  I don't even want to say too much because I think it's so much better walking in not knowing what to expect.

Modern Lovers
by Emma Straub
Modern Lovers was a book donated to my church's festival and I snagged it out of curiosity.  I'm a "judge a book by it's cover" kinda girl. And I judged correctly.  This was a fun read, not completely light in it's material, but I loved the multi-narrative approach.

The Voice of Knowledge: A Practical Guide to Inner Peace
by Miguel Ruiz
I struggled to make it through this one.  I picked it up and put it down A LOT.  I read Miguel Ruiz's The Four Agreements and enjoyed the experience and took to heart a lot of his advice, but I guess the skeptical in me couldn't accept The Voice of Knowledge.  *insert girl emoji shrugging*

Charlotte's Web
by E.B. White
I HAVE ALWAYS WANTED TO READ CHARLOTTE'S WEB!! Sure, I saw the cartoon version as a kid, but as we all know - the book is always better than the movie.  When I was returning it to the library, a man stopped me and said, "Hey! I read that as a kid!!"

Let's Pretend This Never Happened: A Mostly True Memoir
by Jenny Lawson
She is such a goddess.  I sat on the plane to Utah (both ways) and laughed so hard I cried in front of perfect strangers.  I love you Jenny Lawson.

Thirteen Reasons Why
by Jay Asher
No, I have not watched the Netflix series, and I probably won't after chatting about it with my friend Ashley who indicated it differs greatly from the book.  It was a gripping read and reminded me how every action you make can affect someone - make sure it's a positive one.

The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks
by Rebecca Skloot
Oh. My. God.  This book blew my mind and broke my heart.  I tossed Henrietta aside a few times to stop up the tears rising in my throat. The story of Henrietta, her family, and the HeLa cells feels like it belongs in the world of sci-fi--but it doesn't.  It's real and so many of us are here because of Henrietta's death.

Life of Pi
by Yann Martel
I'm sorry you guys but...I hated this book.  It was so long winded and there was just too much philosophy from the author.  I enjoy those types of books too, but this one felt incredibly self-righteous.  Not enough plot, too much thought. (IDK IT RHYMES).

by Kalyn Nicholson
Kalyn Nicholson inspires the crap out of me.  I knew I wanted to support her first novel in any way I could.  I did enjoy Catcher, and I'm excited that it's a series because I really want to know what happens to Carson and Grey.  This definitely has a debut novel feel, and I think she's headed in the right direction.

The Last Black Unicorn
by Tiffany Haddish
Um. Yes. The world needs more Tiffany Haddish.  I finished this book in less than 24 hours.  I actually ended up late to a friend's birthday party because I couldn't put it down.

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