“Was it a bad day, or was it a bad five minutes that you used as an excuse to say you had a bad day?” ~ unknown
Everyone has bad days. Everyone has stresses and issues. Everyone has challenges, even those who appear to be living a charmed life. But is it always a bad day or is a moment in the day that festers, and we over think it and it gives us a reason to be angry? Is it a moment in the day that allows a pity party? Is it a moment in a day that plays over and over and causes the sense of a bad day?
Certainly this is not meant to suggest that there is no such thing as a bad day. We have all had them. But as I reflected on the quote above I realized that recently, I have allowed some bad moments to translate into bad day(s). Yes, plural at times! And does that become a bad week?
As I reflected upon the bad moments and perhaps days, I realized that much of what these seemed to be focused on letting someone down, or being let down. I cannot tell you if I really did let someone down, but it felt that way. I do know that in some of the circumstances that made up a bad moment, I let myself down. I wasn’t my best self, and I haven’t been for a bit now. I have to find my way back to my best self, with confidence, and with compassion for myself and others.
I know I was let down, but was that people’s intent? I don’t believe so. I am beginning to realize that it is my expectations that allow me to be let down. Don’t get me wrong, there are people in my life who say one thing but don’t always follow through and my expectations get built up. That always means a big let down, and the most recent caused me to have a bad bad day. I certainly allowed that bad moment to fester. But at times it is false expectations that cause the let down. There are assumptions we sometimes make about what someone may do because it is what we want and perhaps what we would have done.
I remember when I was a young girl crying to my mom about a friend who had let me down. My mom’s reaction was two-fold. First, she told me, you should never get your hopes up that people will always do what they say, they don’t. That was a sobering thought. Why don’t people do what they say, I asked? She said because sometimes life gets in the way and they can’t or they don’t know how to say no to you. Hmm, that still happens today and I should be more used to it! I’m not. Second, she told me, I should not expect people to be the friend to me that I may be to them. Again, I asked why. She said because not everyone has your heart Suzy, not everyone wants to do for others the way you do.
So this week I had categorized as a bad week. Started with bad moments over the weekend and ended with some tough moments at work, which caused me to have a bad stressful week; which made me angry. That anger became a focal point for a while and I realized I was venting more and snapping at people more. I knew I needed to snap out of it somehow so it didn’t turn into the spiral that would cause me to drown in negativity. I decided with the beautiful summer weather last night I needed to be outside and at the beach. Lucky for me, there is a DJ who plays on the Bradley Beach boardwalk many Friday evenings. My niece’s group of friends, who are all special needs, all go to see Jay the Danceman. I decided that was what I needed. I couldn’t sit home again and wallow in my self pity. I needed to be outside and decompress, and with people who love me unconditionally.
Dancing to Justin Timberlake’s “Can’t Stop this Feeling” or Pharrell Williams’ “Happy” made me smile. It was exactly what I needed. To listen to music under the light of the moon with the sound and scent of the ocean only a few feet away took away my bad moments. It completely washed away the bad week. The evening was not a late one but it was perfect. It created a great happy few hours. And that transcends the bad moments.
My lesson for the week, stop letting a bad five minutes turn into an excuse to wallow and create a bad day or week. And realize that when you are let down, you may have had unrealistic expectations. And dance under the moonlight any chance you get!
Today is a new day, the sun is up and the sky is beautiful. It will be a great day, and those few bad minutes will be just that, a few bad minutes.