Low Moods Aren’t A Sign Of Failure

RE: Self Care Skills

Sometimes I’m a wild mix of sad, glad and frustrated.

My short experience as a foster mom has been challenging to say the least. Sometimes I feel made for the role and other times I feel inadequate.

It is bittersweet. I know I do what I can – yet I wish I were capable of so much more.

Do you sway back and forth like this about some things in your life?

I’m good at this.

No, I suck at this.

Wait, I’m pretty okay after all.

Nah, I’m a dweeb.

My friend Dr. Melissa Peet of Generative Knowledge Institute teaches a concept she calls oscillation. Like a fan that sways back and forth to spread breezes through a room – our moods sway back and forth, only with a less reliable rhythm.

I used to think that low moods were a sign that I was failing in some way. I thought I should be past it, so strong and well developed that I wouldn’t have bad days anymore.

Silly idea!

It is NORMAL to have low moods.

Another friend of mine, Therese Sparkins of Radical Leadership pointed out to me that I have chosen to live out on the edge of my abilities much of the time. My willingness to stretch and grow puts me in a messy space where failing to meet the mark I’ve set is going to happen often.

The only way to never feel like a failure is to stop trying new things.

With these two encouraging thoughts from two very smart women, I’m tucking myself into a cocoon of self care to ride out the low season of today.

One thought rises up in the midst of all this.

As imperfect as I am, I’m a million miles from an older version of me who wouldn’t be able to roll with the flow of life with some peace.

The me I am today has lived, learned, failed, grown – so much so that I’m DOING things I once only dreamed of.

So, I visual that I go back and spend some time with old me. I choose 45 year old Kelly. I want her to know she’s got a future that matters and as ill-equipped as she feels right now, she only had to lean in and try.

Yes, she’ll fail. Yes, it will be messy. But YES it will create more of what she wants in the world.

What would you like to say to a past version of you?

Choose a point in the past, a version of you you’re pretty sure would be wow’d by the you of today. What encouragement would you offer? What would you like to share with this old you?

Gosh, do you notice how different you are?

We are always growing and changing.

Give that old you a warm hug. Love on yourself in a way only you can do.

For the you of today…

If I ask myself right now: “What do I want and need to feel taken care of?”

The answers are pretty simple.

I’d like a fresh hot cup of coffee. Decaf, with caramel flavored creamer.

I want to put housework out of mind.

I want to work on my passion project.

Then, I want a nice nap.

And so it shall be.

How can you take good care of yourself in the midst of a low mood? What are your go to self-comforting ideas?


Self Care Skills

Add your ideas or ask questions...

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked

  1. Great topic! When I get in a low mood, I try to switch gears as to whatever I'm doing and get a fresh look on things. Usually I turn to baking or cooking to change my mood.

{"email":"Email address invalid","url":"Website address invalid","required":"Required field missing"}