I've never claimed to be an expert in anything. Well, maybe useless trivia. But don't you hate those people who barely allow you to finish a sentence before they're jumping in to interrupt with a better story than yours or worse, advice? I hate it. So please don't think I'm being all know-it-allie when I offer tips. I'm merely sharing what works for me and if it helps someone else, all the better.
Before I jump to another list, which, by the way, is the laziest form a blog can take and therefore my favorite, I just have to say something. This morning I was driving to a training site got behind a car with the following bumper sticker: "I love my wife." I've seen these before, just as I've seen the corresponding "I love my husband." Hmm. I'm wondering - is this something you feel you need to let people know in case they were wondering? Do you use it as a reminder to yourself? I know it's not always the case, but when I think of being married, I think of two people who love each other. Unless we're talking about Bill and Hillary Clinton and even then I'm pretty sure by now there's a strong fondness. I just don't understand these bumper stickers. Maybe I should one-up them and get one that says, "I love my husband, my dog, my family, my friends and Breyer's Mint Chocolate Chip Ice Cream." What a good idea.
Anyway, I heard someone today talking about Seasonal Affective Disorder. Having grown up in Florida, I never would have guessed what a real issue this was, that is until I spent my first winter here a few years back. I didn't realize it was sort of happening to me until the first really pretty warm spring day after a week of really shitty weather. All of a sudden I was in a great mood and had a bunch of energy, then thought, "Oh...I guess I've been sad. Probably because of SAD." We're lucky here, compared to a lot of places where winter is REALLY cold and dark, I'm thinking like New England and Seattle-type places, but after spending two cold and rainy days home last weekend with my nose in a book, I figure I better get prepared. And yes, I realize I've been bitching about wanting this weather for the past six months. Lay off.
Ways I avoid SAD:
This might seem obvious and annoying, but I had to include it. I don't always succeed with exercise goals, but I always feel so much better after I've done something, whether it be chugging away on my little stepper, taking the dog for a walk, watching The Biggest Loser while eating a bowl of popcorn - whatever works for you.
If you don't already, consider taking up smoking. Oh, I know. Name one good reason this would be helpful. Okay, I will. Most places these days do not allow smoking. If you want to smoke, you must go outside. Normally during the workday, non-smokers only go outside if they're going to lunch or going home. Smoke breaks would allow them to step out several times a day for short periods of time, thus affording them more time in the sunlight, more vitamin D and some fresh air (in between the smoky air). It's not a perfect plan, but it's something.
Like exercise, laughing releases natural endorphins. Unlike exercise, laughing takes almost no effort whatsoever. Find a comedy show and watch it five to seven nights a week. With all the cable stations out there now, there is no reason you can't achieve this. I don't think I've ever made it through an episode of the show pictured above without laughing to the verge of pants-wetting. If you don't watch TV, read a newspaper or listen to the nightly stock market report. Always good for a chuckle.
We're tits deep into football season. I've found it's way more enjoyable now that I kind of understand what's going on. I still don't know exactly how the polls work, why the Florida Gators never have a bad year or how some of those cheerleaders stay warm, but I'm hoping to learn the answers to all this someday as well.
'Tis the season for the bad holiday sweater. I'm sure this is not just a southern thing, but it seems very, VERY popular here. When I'm out shopping with my mother-in-law this weekend, I plan on counting how many bad sweaters I see. I try to do this every year and I'm hoping to beat last year's record of eleven in one day. They're especially easy to spot when the owner of the sweater has the bubble/helmet hair style or when the sweater lights up. I'm happy to say I've never seen my mother-in-law in one of these, but I'll admit both of us do enjoy a nice pair of Christmas socks.
Some days, I hate everyone in the world except for my yellow man. I highly recommend if you don't already own one to either go rescue one and take it home or at the very least, borrow someone else's for a few hours. It is scientifically impossible to be in a bad mood when you're playing with a dog. They do now allow it.