Life seems so hard in February. It’s freezing outside, mostly grey and windy. You need several layers before you can leave the house. I’ve got this crazy winter flu and everyone in my family too, so it’s like Walking Dead in this house. My first good friend is turning 40, getting the big existential questions I keep asking myself to the next level. It’s like looking up at the impossibly tall cliff and knowing you need to get to the top, somehow, then getting depressed about it before you even make the first step.
Work is not going well, because everyone is severely overworked (when did British workforce voluntarily set itself on this route to annihilation?), affected by SAD and there is this girl who, for one or another reason is very unhappy, and is projecting this negativity into day to day terror for everyone else working with her. Like poison she destroys everything around her. I keep reminding myself about 3 choices that you have when dealing with a difficult situation or a difficult someone: you can flight (run away), you can fight (change the situation) or you can change your attitude. Normally I run away or fight to change the situation, usually taking a revolutionary approach and resulting in a lot of suffering for myself and others. This time I am making it into an exercise to change my attitude instead. It never worked before, so let’s see.
Commute is also sad. How the hell do you survive this period without plunging into major depression?
This is what I do. I listen to Mahasukha Center’s lectures podcast on Buddhism during the morning walk to the train station, I meditate on the train. I wear motivational jewellery. I laugh a lot (also Spotify has an amazing comedy section now). I exercise, however moderately (tai chi and treadmill in my case). Channel 4’s ’24 hours A&E’ which I watch weekly helps put things into perspective. I engage (or in my case keep thinking about) the side projects- writing, art and tech- this helps me feel alive. And I have a winter sun holiday booked (in 3 sleeps!). Yay! Gems like this of course also help:
Stay happy, my dear nomads. Keep cheering yourselves up. And as I say to myself, unless you are faced with death, you always have a choice.