As a hominid (if you are reading this, you probably are one), you — like the rest of us — are subject to bad moods. Our moods are in a constant state of flux, and can be affected by many factors, including:
— Whether or not we’ve eaten
— What, and how much, we’ve eaten
— How much sleep we have (or have not) gotten
— The quality (or lack thereof) of the sleep we did get
— Any physical pain or discomfort we may be suffering from
— The behavior of other hominids(!)
— A million or so other things, some of which we may have some degree of control over, but many, or most, of which we probably do not.
It’s easy to get down on ourselves — even if it’s unfair, unreasonable, or unhelpful to do so. It’s easy to be frustrated by our circumstances, the state of the world, or simply not getting what we (think we) want at any given moment. This is very much part of the bipedal experience (if not also the quadrupedal, or any-other-pedal [or lack-of-pedal] experience). As far as I can tell, no one is immune.
While it occasionally may come in handy to be in a bad mood (such as when we use it to elicit sympathy from others, or to excuse ourselves from some unappealing task, chore, or prior commitment), for the most part, none of us would consciously choose this state.
Yet, it shows up. And, by definition, we are none too happy about it.
So, if bad moods are inevitable, and we can agree that they suck, what — if anything — can we do about them?
I like this question. Tackling it puts me in a better mood. 😄
Here is the good news about bad moods:
1) Like everything else in the known world, they don’t last. They are temporary. They will pass. Thank goodness.
2) It is possible, at least sometimes, to disrupt or even dismantle a bad mood through taking some deliberate action to counter it.
3) It is also possible, at least sometimes, to use a bad mood as a catalyst for positive action.