Have you ever woken up, looked at the grey sky and thought to yourself, “I’d rather stay in bed”? Rainy days have always had that effect on me, especially throughout the years I lived in London. For a long time, I would see the grey skies and let them dictate that’s how my day was going to be.
If we only did things when the sun was shining, how would we get anything done?
That’s what I used to say to myself. That and “Be your own sunshine”. It actually wasn’t very helpful. Instead of my overly upbeat, fake it until you make it approach, I decided to embrace it, relax and let it be. I decided that rainy days were not the enemy. In fact, a cold, dreary, wet and overcast day is the perfect opportunity for introspection.
While I’ve seen more sunshine in Brisbane in the last 6 months than I did in 9 years of living in London, we have had a good week of rain now. It brought back those feelings of being in London. The mood of things lowered. I felt that pinch of sadness creeping in. And although it wasn’t cold, the sky was grey.
The external world does not dictate your internal world.
In fact, it’s quite the opposite. You have so much power in your mind, you can actually manipulate your own reality. Scary isn’t it? Have you ever thought that, perhaps, instead of seeing the grey sky and becoming negative, that you already had the negative seed in your mind? Perhaps, if we woke up and felt pure joy, we might see the world as the beautiful place that it is – rain, hail and sleet included.
This is your opportunity.
When we recognise our own behaviour patterns, when we acknowledge them and understand them, we have the power to change them. If we want to.
The next time you find yourself dreading facing the world, due to a bit of rain, pay attention. What are your thoughts? How are you feeling? What is it that you’re telling yourself? Is there something here that you can change? Is there something you can improve within you? Introspection isn’t always easy. It takes time and it takes practice.
Nature VS Nurture
Not the traditional use of the phrase. I’m talking about using Mother Nature’s gloomy weather to reflect within, to nurture and nourish our own wellbeing. I know you have a job to do, a family to provide for, a child to look after, but if the grey skies are getting you down, how can you be your best self for others when you aren’t loving and looking after yourself?
The message I want to you to take from this post is not a list of “Five tips for self-love”. Forget that fluffy BS regurgitated all over the internet. I don’t want you to light a soy candle while you slowly lose your mind. If you take anything from this post I hope it is this. Introspect.
Maybe not right away, but hopefully you will soon start to recognise your thought patterns and how you give your own power away each time you declare a rainy day a bad day.
What’s with the Grey Cat?
Sure, it’s a cute stock image. But when I lived in a warehouse in North London, I lived with a beautiful grey cat named Mags. I welcomed any opportunity to show her affection and let her sleep on my bed on those days that I didn’t get out. I’m not sure if you’re familiar with the ‘black dog’ metaphor but in a way, Mags was a living metaphor of my black dog. Except she was a grey cat.
As a metaphor for depression, the black dog is always there, you live with it. Mags, the grey cat, taught me to show compassion and love for something that didn’t always love me back. I have to laugh right now as I remember how much she loved to bite and scratch. But I still showed her compassion. It’s what helped the relationship to work. If you’re living with a black dog (or a grey cat), you still need to manage the relationship.
When you show yourself compassion, understanding and pay attention to your needs. When you take time out of your day for you or when you listen to your thoughts. These are the times you develop your relationship with yourself.