It’s been a tough couple of weeks.
Spring, in all its loveliness, is in full bloom: warmer days, constant birdsong, countless blossoms.
So. Much. Pollen.
Its effects nearly led me to re-route from the grocery store to the E.R. last week, in spite closed car windows and humming a/c, because the pollen made it nearly impossible for me to see. Or breathe.
Two of my favorite things.
Especially while driving.
I’ve taken allergy medicine every single day since.
My daily antihistamine-decongestant combo doesn’t make the pollen go away; it makes me better able to mange its effects.
It’s been a tough couple of weeks. (Months? Years?)
Horrible, senseless, heart-breaking, and mind-numbing things happen in our world, at a pace that seems ever more rapid and destructive.
Fires, floods, violence, corruption, climate crisis. My strategy of reading the news instead of watching it on TV (except Stephen Colbert and Trevor Noah on DVR) is becoming less effective at helping me not want to hide under the covers some days.
And unlike the yellow dust that the plants make, human-created actions and events that trouble our minds and break our hearts don’t seem to dissipate when the seasons change.
We may not be able to make the stressors go away, but we can find relief from the things that might otherwise immobilize us.
Not with tablets or nose sprays, but by intentionally, consistently, relentlessly seeking the good.
Start with Gratitude
Infusing your day with gratitude is one of the most effective ways to boost the kind of well-being that fuels you to create lasting positive change, for yourself and the world around you.
Throw in Some Positive Emotion
Throughout the day, whenever you experience a jolt of negative emotion, notice it, acknowledge it, and let it flow through you. That’ll take between 30 and 90 seconds. (Sure, it might happen again, but let’s take one step at a time.)
Once the negative emotion has run its course, decide whether it’s yours or not. If not, let it go. If yes, decide how and when to respond.
Next, look for at least three – five is better – small things, in quick succession, that kindle positive emotion in you.
Remember, you’re not pretending away the negative. You’re noticing it and acknowledging it, then, by seeking the positive, managing it in a way that fuels you to better deal with it, all while boosting positive well-being in the process.
End with Three Good Things
At the end of the day, take about 10 minutes to think back over your day and write down three good things that happened and the part you played in making them happen.
Think small, and be specific.
Managing Symptoms, Fueling Hope
Will infusing your days with gratitude, positivity, and reflections on the good make all the ills of the world disappear? Maybe not overnight, but we don’t really know what would happen if everyone did it, every single day, now do we?
What I do know for sure is that you can better navigate a world that’s often filled with “psychic pollen,” and you can cultivate renewable person fuel to help you be well and do good with less effort and more joy over the long haul.
Which beats the heck out of any antihistamine I know of.
Subscribe and never miss a post.