The Monday after…

Weekends carry good vibes for many of us. We might play sport, go to a concert, escape away for a short trip, or bury our nose in a good book.

This past weekend I had quite the busy time. I attended a new creatives group, planned out a D&D session, caught up with a friend over coffee, participated in a 6.5km running race, ran an ultimate training, published a blog post, watched a good movie with good friends, and edited my book manuscript.

On Friday, before the onset of all these things, I did wonder how I would be after this plethora of activities. They would be fun but also require much physical and mental energy.

Seldom is the outcome of something as bad as the worst our mind can think up. I thought would struggle to wake up on Monday. I thought my muscles would be extremely sore, and that I would wake with a mind so foggy I couldn’t see my own nose!

Now if this eventuated. It did take me a few goes to get out of bed, but my mind wanted to be up and tackling the day. I’m not a morning person so this was the opposite of a usual morning for me. My body was a tad sore, but that’s to be expected after doing a different type and level of exercise than I’m used to. My mind was tired but with the right food and consistent hydration throughout the day I managed to focus on each task and work my way through them. So, my Monday after an action packed weekend, was far better than I had expected!

Preparation and cultivating the right perspective made this happen. It’s been a long process—still ongoing—of identifying negative thought patterns not backed up by evidence, and replacing them productive ones. Up until three years ago a weekend with this many social engagements would have spelled doom for my Monday. I would have stayed up late worrying about the next thing, and probably piked out on at least one. By focusing forward, eating sufficient amounts of healthy food, and taking appropriate rests between everything—including early nights—it was a thoroughly productive and recuperative weekend.

The benefit of a weekend spent the right way is not something I have made habit yet, but I’m on my way. Healthy eating, actively resting, intentional time with friends, being still, and getting enough sleep are all extremely important to my wellbeing. I’d even go so far as to say they’re important for everyone’s wellbeing. Each of these things will look different for everyone, but we’ll know when one is out of whack.

I hope you’ll join me on this ride to pragmatic thinking and healthy choices. I still mess up. A lot. But I’m getting better at letting go of negative self talk brought on by making mistakes, and focussing on learning from all my experiences.

Have you ever found yourself in a negative thought spiral? How did you work your way out of it? What is one current default negative thought you can flip to a positive one this week?

Good things take time. Looking after your wellbeing is a good thing. Take your time with it. Peace.

Cover photo by NEOSiAM 2021 from Pexels.

6 thoughts on “The Monday after…

  1. Jane Griffin says:

    Hello Hamish

    What an encouraging read. After a full day of work with educators I realise there are some that can frame their thinking postively and others that struggle but would benefit from your thoughts.

    I work to change my state. Today after and during work, and in no particular order; I had a swim, drank water, laughed at my mistakes – I make a few – and revelled in my conversations with some great teachers. Now I’m off to eat good food, then write a poem.

    Ngā mihi

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hamish says:

      Each one of those things sounds like a great addition to the day. Sometimes putting all those different pieces together to make a whole on any particular day is a struggle, and it is then turning to God helps realign my perspective with His grace and love.

      Thank you for reading and sharing. Please share any post with whomever you think may benefit from these words. 😊

      Like

  2. Holly says:

    Hamish, you are seriously amazing. Each time I read your words, I am blessed by your insights and come away with nuggets of truth. One of the sentences that stuck out to me was this one: “Seldom is the outcome of something as bad as the worst our mind can think up.” — My my my, how true that is!! You could preach on that one thought right there! We worry so much over absolutely nothing. I know that I am guilty. My mind is capable of coming up with 3,000 what-if scenarios in record-breaking-time if I don’t keep a check on it!

    It is so encouraging to hear that you had such an incredibly productive weekend but still managed to have a wonderful Monday too! I agree wholeheartedly with you — when we find the right balance in our lives, we can manage much more than we realize. Like you said, our diets and hydration alone are key to our success! Most of all, rest, rest, and more rest! This world seems to value busyness, even when it’s obvious that productivity plummets. Nothing tanks my mental health like a lack of sleep or general rest. It sounds that you can relate! What a blessing it is to know what our triggers are so that we can do better and live better!

    Congratulations on coming so far! I’m proud of you and I know you must be so thankful to feel such a change in your life. It makes me smile! Thank you for sharing your story because it gives us all the courage to keep going, keep growing, and challenge that stinkin’ thinking! God bless you, Hamish! 😊

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hamish says:

      Perspective is key. God provides us with what we need if we hold onto His precious grace. He shows us the direction, but it is still up to us to make the choice. One thing I’m trying to overcome is the temptation to stay up later. God nudges me time and time again but I still fail. He never give up on me making that right decision, and I am getting better.

      Thank you for reading and your beautiful response. 😊

      Liked by 1 person

  3. PoojaG says:

    Really great post! I think I used to have negative thoughts a lot more often before but I have been working on it over the last few years and I have gotten better at controlling my mind. When I do have negative thoughts though I have found that it helps to try and figure out where the negativity is coming from and what’s triggering me.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hamish says:

      The historical “fight or flight” thought processes are no longer as necessary because we are not surrounded by things that will endanger us. Hence it’s a process to flip our mindset to think of the positive outcomes of decisions we make too. As I said in the post, and Holly has highlighted above, “Seldom is the outcome of something as bad as the worst our mind can think up.” It’s tough to fight against that perspective sometimes, but we can do it.

      As you so crucially point out, treating the cause of the negative thoughts and not just the symptoms is the only way to truly address them.

      I really appreciate you taking the time to read and leave such valuable insights. Keep on keeping on being awesome, because you are. 😊

      Liked by 1 person

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