Al mal tiempo, buena cara.

6 hacks to quickly cheer you up when you’ve got the blues

Mood of the post:
New feature from this post on – a song to go along! Music can take any activity to a different level. Youtube it on while reading!

I am not what happened to me, I am what I choose to became. – Carl Jung

I read this quote inside of a bus, going from the airport to Mexico City. It means literally “for the bad weather, a good face”. It would fit like a glove two months or so after, when I woke up to my first day in Berlin, feeling less than competent, not at all ready or willing to do what I love most about my gipsy life: to start over in a new city. To create a life from scratch, in a new environment.

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So, life have these perks. Sometimes even your favorite things, places or people have to survive a hard day. And hard days are there exactly so we can seize the good ones. Sadness is much needed, something like a dash of springtime for the soul. The end and start of another cycle, even the tiniest one. Those are the days when we can use a recollection of experiences and feelings, of ups and downs, and then blossom again for the new times. And the key for that is simply to… enjoy. Yes, we can and should enjoy our sorrow.

There are some, say, techniques I developed along these years where I chose to live so fast that my life can change completely in a matter of days. Most times for the good, some times not so much. Choices do have consequences, and although we learn it from a very young age, some people tend not to live with their consequences in the best way possible. So, there goes the first universal mantra for happiness:

ACCEPT YOUR OWN CHOICES. And off course everything else that will come along. We sometimes are too hard on ourselves, without realizing that we are not perfect as we would like to be, and that it is actually ok. We are living beings that learn with experiences. A friend of mine once told me that according to physics, all our life decisions will be taken as a result of the very first decision we ever took. It is a chain. Of rights and wrongs, of experience. So this is one of my life-lasting motos of acceptance: It’s 50-50. Every time we come to a crossroad, there is left or right. And we can’t judge ourselves for choosing “the wrong” path, as there is no wrong. At the time, that was what we thought to be the best thing to do. So embrace everything as just a… different lesson.

“I have not failed. I just found 10.000 ways that won’t work” – Thomas Edison

NOURISH YOUR TEARS. But don’t take too much pity on yourself. That is one of the cancers of the soul, if you ask me. You have all it takes inside you, and you are strong enough to go through anything. Try not to think too hard. Just live one minute at a time, than one hour, and than each day. It sounds easy, but it is truly one of the hardest things to live for, just the present. Solve the problems without looking too much at the whole, but by doing what it takes progressively. That will probably relief a bit of the stress, and allows you to get the best of not so good times.

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KEEP CALM AND BE YOUR TODAY’S KING. Paint your nails, take a long shower, or be immersed in the bathtub for hours, style your hair, wax, cut your beard, get a haircut, or do whatever it takes to feel clean and beautiful. Clean the house, organize extra stuff laying around. I was advised by a very wise person on my first year in Greece: Your environment has got to be organized so your mind can work properly. I am an extremely unorganized person by nature, and this helped me a lot every time I had the blues. As hard as it seems to move around when your heart is not singing, it is the best exercise for the mood to start changing. Speaking of exercising…

MOVE. MOVE, MOVE, AND MOVE MORE. When I was studying advertising in the University, one of the pieces that caught my attention was a Nike film, in which a woman was jogging, and from her, washing machines, screaming bosses and all the annoying parts of life were flying and staying behind. That’s how I feel when I go running. It is not a coincidence that every apartment that I choose to live in any city has got to have a park next to it. But that works for me – you can choose what does it for you. Anything, do whatever you please, just exercise. Specially when you don’t feel like it. You will feel proud of yourself, and that is the feeling you want when deciding something important. No need for that super expensive gym membership. I run on my Converses. Put on your most comfortable clothes, and go outside as quick as possible before you have time to change your mind. 🙂

TAKE ADVICES, ONLY DO NOT RELY ON THEM. And don’t use people’s ears as a toilet. Seriously, one thing is to need a friendly shoulder on hard times, another completely different thing is to spread negativity all over the place. Yes, you are loved by some people. And for sure they will be there for you, as you will for them. But by hurting some of the most important people of my life I realized that all of that have a limit. You should not expect that people will make you feel better every time. This is not their job, it’s yours. And as much as they will want to help you, they are not in your shoes. You know better.

SET A DEADLINE. For sadness to end. Give yourself a day, not more than two. And keep on. Raise your head and go to work. Work on your optimism. On your horizons. On your eye sight, on your smile. Happiness at the end, is a lifestyle.

Oh, yeah. That day in Berlin, I got home after an exploring walk and didn’t sleep looking in the internet for a place to live. The next day I went to see one, and got my first room here. Next to a park.

“Be softer with you. You are a breathing thing. A memory to someone. A home to a life.” –Nayyirah Waheed

Published by

Tatiana Bastos

Born and raised in Brasil, studied advertisement at Mackenzie University in Sao Paulo. But from a small child knew to be taken head over feet by fine arts, illustration and photography. For that reason, studied at Panamericana School of Art and Design, also in Brazil, and then ventured to study at The Art Students League of New York, in Manhattan. After years of travels, decided to be based for half of the year on an inspiring island at the center of the blue aegean sea, in Greece, and the other half of the year on electric Berlin, Germany. Still a world traveller, healthy eater, art lover, diy do-er.

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