Sunday Post 107: Breaking the Slump

Ever get in a slump?  I know a few folks who just live there.

I have an acquaintance who is always weary.  Every time I see him he shrugs his shoulders.  He’s out of breath.  Tired.  Unable to take what life has handed him.

I know another who is always frustrated.  Someone is always out to get him – his wife, his boss, the government – in his mind, he just can’t get a break.

I can relate.  I’ve gone through a couple of years of rut.  In my mind, it wasn’t my fault that I was miserable.  It was God’s fault.  It was the doctor’s fault.  I was tired, had too much to do.  In my mind, my grumpiness was justified.

The problem was, it was chronic.  For a period of time, I was really, really unenjoyable to be around.

Some would say I’m still that way at times, and they’re probably right.  But I think I’ve at least figured out that my outlook on life is my responsibility.  What happens to me happens to me.  Sometimes it feels like a lot, but I’m not carrying any greater burden than a ton of other people who are walking around with a smile on their face.

Everyone has their battles.  Some you outwardly see.  Some are masked from the world – but they are there.

Over the past six months, something has changed within me.  I think I realized that I was allowing the world to get me down.  People were getting on my nerves.  I was impatient, and I was self-centered.

I also realized that this frustration with life and negative attitude was affecting me more than it was anyone else.  Others would laugh at my sarcasm, feel sorry for the widower and then, they would go enjoy their lives.  I was the one who had to live with my miserable self day in and day out, and that was painful.

I’m not quite sure how one reframes life.  It’s almost like trying to stop smoking.  It’s a difficult thing to do.  I’d say step 1 is to realize that you are unhappy or cynical.  Step 2 is to want to make a change.  Step 3 might be to realize the good that is in your life.  And step 4?  Make a move – do something that helps you reframe.

The world has thrown me some curve balls.  I don’t want to get hit and writhe on the ground.  I want to take what was thrown and knock a homer.

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  1. Thank you for posting this. Im feeling like Im in a slump and have been for awhile. This post is encouraging to me. Yes I have problems that are out of my control but many people have the same or worse problems and they cope much better than I. Its so hard to break free from this depression. It’s almost defining my life. Sigh.

    • Mel Ham

       /  January 27, 2013

      it’s very parallel to forgiveness. It’s so hard humanly to forgive in this fact, well for me anyway. Some how I equate forgiveness with letting the thing/person that violated me off the hook…”WHO’S GONNA HOLD THEM ACCOUTABLE???!” for what was done for me. If I forgive who is ever going to remember that I was the victim…oh the suffering that I do..did…I need to honor this suffering….there needs to be a holiday in honor of MY suffering. It’s a form of passive agressive retaliation. Like forgiveness who does it hurt for me to hang on to it…the world is going on about it’s business..the person that violated me…keeps on keeping on. My mom says (don’t know whether it’s hers or she got it somewhere..she’s pretty quick with these.) Not forgiving is like drinking poison to kill your enemy. Moving on …pushing through..digging in..forgiving is for us..the victims. Putting down the heaviness of carrying that dark cloud, sorrow, anger, frustration, so we can go forward. It’s hard to grow with such weight. Who will feel sorry for us..if we have a light step, smile with the sun on our face, and mr blue bird on our shoulder? I done alot of thinking about forgiveness through the years…still a struggle….time can put things into perspective…I can’t do it immediately after the hardship or violation has occurred. We just had a sunday school lesson today on perserverence.
      love mel

      • Danny Tanner

         /  January 27, 2013

        I love what your mom said. I can think of someone right now who is miserable…because she can’t forgive. She looks like hell and is so very bitter. And it is going to kill her, not the person she can’t forgive.

    • Danny Tanner

       /  January 27, 2013

      It’s really not easy to change, but you can do it. I see folks all the time who are finding happiness even in tough situations. It’s about how you approach your situation. Easier said than done. Push on!

  2. Gail

     /  January 27, 2013

    I am in phase 4–makiing a move. May we both stay focused on God’s will for our lives as we make the MOVE. Gail

  3. Mom

     /  January 27, 2013

    I have learned that reframing is a part of everyday life. It’s a good thing. You just have to get to the place each day or each episode that you can get your perspective back and see the situation in a different light. I have spent a lifetime doing just that. You’re right. You do exactly what you said. You deal with the situation and deal with it and then one day, something clicks and you are able to see things through differnet lenses. Those are the good times. It doesn’t matter where we are in life, we have to constantly rethink our lives and each time, we move on a little farther in our maturity and in our faith walk. Isn’t life interesting? Hard but never dull. At times I could use a little dull, couldn’t you?

  4. Evie Lichti

     /  January 28, 2013

    I will always remember a lady in a Sunday School class I attended. She’s gone now and I know if I told you her name, you’d know her. Something she said once has always stuck with me and it was this: “If we all sit in a circle in this room and throw our troubles on a pile in the middle of the room, we’d all go and pick up our own; you don’t want mine and I don’t want yours.” I think we all feel that way when we see others and the problems and troubles they have, we don’t have it so bad after all. Continued love n’ prayers, m’ friend – for you and your precious girls!

  5. George

     /  January 28, 2013

    Great advice for anyone regardless of circumstance. Well put!

  6. Wren

     /  January 28, 2013


  7. Cris

     /  January 28, 2013

    It feels very odd that you’re posting all of this now because, while it’s not at all the same, this winter marks eight years since my son’s autism diagnosis and three years I have been a long distance parent. Both occured on similarly grey January days. Both were huge turning points in my life. One altered the course of my marriage and set the course for my being Non-Custodial Mom. The other forced me to completely rexamine myself as parent. Moving to a new state forced me to re-learn everything I knew about snow, regional dialects and my career.

    The rexamination of these events every January forces me into what I prefer to call “winter hibernation.” Like a bear, with less sleep and sans the benefit of a self-grown winter coat.

    Mary Chapin Carpenter said it best, I think: “Whatever the calling, stumbling or falling
    You follow it knowing there’s no other way…”

    What we’re called to be and do is not always what we’ve planned for ourselves. You find your way, and you find happiness, in spite of that…

  8. Susan Disher

     /  January 29, 2013

    this is a keeper…praying you through

  9. I can’t but clap at you!

  10. teamrowlands

     /  February 28, 2013

    So glad you liked a post on my blog because it led me to yours! I just took a few minutes to read about you and your family. Thank you for sharing your life here. You are an excellent writer in a simple way which I like! Your insight is refreshing to me. I look forward to following your blog. All the best to you and your lovely family!


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