08 February 2011

Conversations Are Water For The Psyche

The title of today's blog comes from an epiphany I had yesterday.

The phenomenon itself is old hat - I've been experiencing it for years, but the subsequent 'ah-ha' and 'oh no' occurred very recently.

Monday morning, I awoke rather sloggishly (it being a Monday, following a Sunday when I'd stuffed myself with a ridiculous amount of high-carb, high-fat, high-sugar, high-evil foods). My digestive system wreaked havoc on my sleep pattern the entire night, and it stands to reason that I woke up feeling like monkey poo. This, in addition, is also on top of the general Monday morning manicness the Bangles sung about all those years ago.

In short, I was riding pretty low in the El Camino of Positivity. I got through my first class of the day at eight, and then bopped over to my other teaching job, where I become engaged in a great conversation with a fellow colleague. From there, I was skipping on air (eat that, Hallmark). I was positive, I was chipper, nothing could touch me then.

A 180 in my temperament? Just because of one ten-minute conversation?

I might have passed it off as a fluke, had it not been for the fact that it has happened to me before. I can recall times I've felt tired, down...then I go off to a committee meeting, work (sometimes), or tea with a friend - and suddenly, I feel rejuvenated. Positive. Alive.

It's a great thing - interacting with people. For me, it's a necessity, absolutely vital thing...that is what I've learned about myself. I suppose this is why my forays into stay-at-momdom have failed. Or why I seemed to change jobs or aspects of it about every five years.

So, when I talk about infusing more positivity into my life, part of that means engaging in more of those uplifting, meaningful conversations. Good stuff.

But...shortly after the 'ah-ha'...was the 'oh no'. Suppose there are people currently in my life that I do not have these uplifting, meaningful conversations with? Suppose that most of my interactions with them are downers and I usually end up irritated or worse...and at best, I feel exactly the same as I did when we first began talking?

But suppose I just can't cut out these people as easily as one might do with an acquaintance or slight friend? Suppose they are people terribly close to me and to cut them out would be to tear apart the strings that hold many, many others together?

It's a bit unbearable to think about, actually. But, now that I'm aware of the effect, I can't unknow it, and so just suffering it for the rest of my life is rather unbearable as well.

Now accepting: Tried-and-true strategies, readings, or advice to combat this particular concern: to restructure my negative interactions so that they become positive ones.

Tall order!

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