After a few weeks of feeling “Blah” and not myself, I had to admit to myself: I think I’m a little depressed. I’m not sure if saying a little depressed is actually psychologically right but it’s exactly how I felt. I wasn’t overly depressed where I wasn’t functioning in real life. I made it to work, family activities, working out, etc. I wasn’t in mild depression which we call Dysthymia because I still was able to laugh and go out with friends but I knew I wasn’t my usual perky self. This is hard to admit, as an educator of Positive Psychology, I’m supposed to be happy. Seriously, I teach happiness how could I not be happy? The truth is in the last 5-6 years, I feel happy a majority of the time but this time was just a little different and I didn’t like it.
As an educator, I have become so self-aware of myself and how I feel that I couldn’t avoid it or be in denial as much as I tried. So, instead I jumped whole heartedly into doing all the things I teach.
I made sure my daily routine consisted of:
A good healthy breakfast/plenty of water
A good night sleep – this was the toughest for me!
Paying it forward which I did a regular basis
So, I was doing it all. Why wasn’t I happy? This was a hard one to figure out. But then it happened. I had what Oprah calls an “AHA Moment”. I realized I was trying too hard. Maybe what I needed was to just to feel the emotions. To accept where I was and not try to change it.
I continued on with my routine of happiness and self-care activities but I didn’t push it. Then it happened. I realized in between all of this, I wasn’t working enough on challenging myself. I have hit a rut and all the daily happiness activities which kept me a float didn’t make the dent I needed to have a transition. To go into a new phase of life. I was at the end of something but not yet the beginning of my next phase. I was somewhere in the middle. I realized that we need to be in the middle for a while in order for you to have that fresh start. The middle is that grey area where you’re not fully over what has ended and not yet fully into the new start. You’re stuck in between transitions. No-one ever talked to me about that but that’s exactly where I was.
The middle area is a time for growth and evaluation. It’s a time to see the clues that are in front of you. A time to follow your intuition. I will use this time as a breather, a time to reflect on where I was and where I want to go. It’s the fork in the road but you haven’t made a decision which way to go yet and that’s ok. Don’t pressure yourself to move forward if you’re not ready yet. The middle time is a great place to grieve your old life and forgive anyone from there so you can move forward. We always want to move thru this part so fast but if we don’t spend time in the middle then we can’t fully transition into our new phase of life so take your time, be patient and don’t judge. Use this time to create the next phase of life.