We all face “blah” days in life – days where our mood feels out of sorts, our enthusiasm has taken a pit stop, and our motivation is running on empty. These days make us want to hibernate and fade into the background like a hermit crab. It is imperative that we ensure that days of blah do not turn into lengthy seasons when we feel weary and are tempted to withdraw.Seasons of weariness indicate that something may be going on or brewing under the surface. Perhaps you are dealing with the pains and loneliness of moving to a new place, the quiet of an empty nest, or feel like you have faded into the background and you are craving new friendships and new adventures.
Perhaps you have stopped going to church and you are desperate for spiritual connections; people to encourage you and hold you accountable when life feels like the quiet and unknown of a wilderness. Perhaps you are dealing with past issues or trauma that has lingered in your mind. Lysa Terkeurst said, “What if the wilderness season we want to avoid is the faith-deepening season our soul really needs?”
What to Do When You Feel Weary
There are several factors to consider when you are facing seasons when you feel weary or stale in life:
1. Take care of your physical health.
If you are feeling overtired, sluggish, or just unmotivated; ensure that you are eating properly, drinking copious amounts of water, and exercising regularly. Your physical health, emotional health, and spiritual health thrive when all three are being properly nourished. Exercise has proven to be a positive influence on your daily life, as well as your life as a whole.
Endorphins are released during and after exercise that positively affect your mood, which in turn help to make good and wholesome decisions about other areas of your life. As counselors, our goal is for you to be at your very best in every area of your life – your physical heart health and emotional heart health are both high on the priority list.
2. Do a wellness checkup on your emotional health.It is important to take an emotional inventory from time to time. Just as we take inventory of the pantry and plan before heading to the grocery store, we must also partake in emotional inventory as we approach hermit-crab days or unfortunate seasons of frustration and angst.
Do you have friends that check-in on you when you are feeling out-of-sorts? Do you check on your friends when they seem lonely and beaten down by the circumstances of life? Do you have a line of open communication with your spouse where you can ask for help and prayer when you want to withdrawal?
3. Take care of your spiritual health.
Isaiah 43:19 reminds us, “For I am about to do something new. See, I have already begun! Do you not see it? I will make a pathway through the wilderness. I will create rivers in the dry wasteland.” God has promised to hold our hand and create beauty from ashes in all seasons of life.
If you are currently passing through a season of withdrawal, perhaps God can redirect you to something new or prepare you for the unfolding of a new chapter. Maybe He wants you to reach out to a new friend or take the opportunity to have a rare heart-to-heart with your spouse.
Maybe it is an opportunity to slow down, be still, enjoy the scenery, and see what He has next for you. Maybe this season is about resting and refocusing. God can use any and all seasons of life to teach us something new, to open our eyes to the blessings in front of us, and to rekindle that spiritual fire from within.
4. Take time to befriend and do something kind for someone.Megan Pruitt said, “Kindness: A simple way to tell another soul that there is still so much love to be found in this world.” Jesus set the ultimate example of loving others even when life was difficult. He exuded light and compassion wherever He went.
Kindness not only changes someone else’s day, but it also brings light and warmth into your own heart. It fills tiny cracks in the crevices of your heart that you did not realize needed to be filled. Smiling at strangers, sending a handwritten note of encouragement, opening the door for strangers, taking a meal to an elderly couple, and dropping coffee by for new parents are all simple ways to show the love of Jesus while brightening your own day.
Somehow these small acts remind you to take time to build relationships and to allow God to use you as a vessel to serve and help others. It can completely change the course of your day, and during the trying seasons of life; might be exactly what you need too.
5. Engage in a calming activity.
Sometimes we face hermit-crab days or weeks because we need to take some time to slow down. Inhale fresh air. Participate in a yoga class. Write in a journal. Enjoy nature. Listen to music. Engaging regularly in calming activities helps to ponder and reflect, reduces stress and anxiety, and helps you relish the moment.
A calm, simple activity also has the added benefit of a mental escape. It allows you to focus on something simple, requiring very little thought, so that you can refocus and avoid overthought in all the busy and negative aspects of your life.
Life can be very overwhelming at times and all of the thoughts and “to-dos” can make it seem impossible to think clearly and remain hopeful and dream big for the future. Mental escapes and calming activities are crucial to healthy mental well-being.
6. Tackle a project you have been putting off.
It can be helpful to organize and freshen up your living and workspaces. Sometimes taking time to liven up your office space or re-organizing your bedroom can help declutter your mind and aid you in the process of decompressing. It is crucial to decompress and declutter your space, which can also help declutter and soothe your mind.
It was once said that “Clutter in your physical surroundings will clutter your mind and spirit.” Clearing the clutter physically helps declutter the mind emotionally and allows room to dream big. Make a vision board and make space for God to breathe life into your soul. Remove the “I can’ts” from your vocabulary and start replacing them with positive chants and “With God, ANYTHING is possible.” Declare it, believe it, achieve it!
Ask yourself these questions:
- Why am I wanting to retreat and withdraw? Is it just an off day?
- Am I taking the time to talk to God and spend time in His Word?
- Am I taking care of myself physically, emotionally, and spiritually?
- Are the lines of communication open with my spouse or close friends when I face off times?
- Am I feeling anxious about something?
- Is something triggering me from my past?
- Does my space need decluttering so I can work toward decluttering my mind?
Know that anxiety about your season of loneliness does not have to follow you. Lisa Leshaw said, “When you’re in the trenches phone someone who’s already climbed out. They have the rope to throw down.” It is lucrative for your heart to have people you can trust and rely on when life throws curve balls or when you battle the depression that you battled with several years ago.
It is imperative to have friends you can phone when you need someone to talk too. It is crucial to stay involved in church, take time to decompress, and work through whatever may be weighing heavy on your heart. It is beneficial to participate in calming activities, declutter your space, and allow room to dream big.
Do not allow seasons of stale periods to influence God’s beautiful plan for your life. If you need help decluttering your heart and mind, schedule a session today. Your new chapter is ready to be written.
“Overwhelmed”, Courtesy of Luis Villasmil, Unsplash.com, CC0 License; “Getting Steps In”, Courtesy of Arek Adeoye, Unsplash.com, CC0 License; “BFFs”, Courtesy of Andrea Tummons, Unsplash.com, CC0 License; “Purple Flowers”, Courtesy of Ales Me, Unsplash.com, CC0 License
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