I was marinating in a crabby mood recently. I know, kinda hard to believe. My negativity was engulfing my mind and slowly seeping into my spirit. It happens to the best of us.
To make things worse, I was really being hard on myself for not being able to shake it. This mood was competing with my normally positive outlook . . . and winning.
I kept trying to act “as if” I was in a good place. This worked temporarily, but surly thoughts were lurking in the background, quick to remind me they were still there. My arsenal of negativity had big claws, ready to quell any form of joy I dared to muster.
Here’s the evolution of my personal crabfest:
I nursed it – “I feel like being grouchy right now.”
I fed it – “Today is awful and it’s only going to get worse.”
I embraced it – “I’m in a horrible mood and I don’t care.”
I became my mood – “I am a crabby, miserable person.”
Then, just as I was on the brink of thinking this was how things were going to be with me . . . It magically evaporated!
Well, it wasn’t quite that sudden, but after talking with my husband about some good things going on, I could feel it lifting. Like the sun slowly coming out from behind the clouds. I found myself sitting up straighter, feeling more tranquil, less agitated. I felt lighter and happier. My cheerful mood was coming back!
Just as the crabby mood had swallowed me up like a tumultuous wave, a calm happiness slowly returned, enveloping me like a warm blanket of contentment and sunshine.
Here’s what I learned about being a crab cake:
- No need to fight it. Don’t be too hard on yourself for being in a bad mood. Everybody is from time to time. Just acknowledge and examine what thoughts might be perpetuating your sorry state of mind.
- Fully immerse yourself in it. It’s really okay to feel bad for a while. It’s better to accept your mood rather than resist or battle it. Just try to sequester yourself so it doesn’t rub off on anyone else.
- Trust that it will eventually fade away. Amazingly, once you admit that you’re in a crabby mood, it loses a lot of its power. Actually saying it out loud – I’m crabby! – really helps to lessen the suffering.
Our feelings are a powerful and valuable gauge of how we’re doing at any particular moment. Maybe a bad mood is letting you know that you’re stressed out and need to ease up on yourself a bit.
Emotions (even crabby ones!) can be a good thing. We can use our feelings to our advantage to reach a deeper understanding of ourselves and our world. Their value is in their ability to alert us that something is amiss internally, that we’re out of balance in some way.
Once you quit fighting that crabbiness, it will inevitably move on. Just know it will most likely be back on another day. And that’s okay. Now you know how to break free!
How do you get yourself out of a crabby mood?