Exploring Sadness

Tattoo Happy Weirdo
This guy's got it all figured out. Well, except how to not continually disappoint his parents.

Let’s talk sadness.

I know – I talk about sadness a LOT. It’s enough already. As such I’m not going to lament my currenttale of woe, although I will say that it may have involved running out of peach Fresca at my parent’s house yesterday which is total bullshit. I’m kidding. My problems are much worse than that. Like Africa bad.

Okay, not Africa bad.

Here’s what I know about sadness and I’ve written it a few dozen times already – I need to learn how to stay with it without running until it passes. Okay good. Now, let us move swiftly to talk about what’s going on when I feel sad.

Well, actually I am interested in figuring out what is within my control and what is outside. Here’s a little checklist of what may be bringing on my sadness.

  • Genetics – Faulty wiring of DNA or other brain/body goofiness.
  • Diet / Exercise – Activities to provide and release energy instead of clogging.
  • Nurture – Past unhelpful beliefs installed at young age by family.
  • Focus – Directing of my thoughts to either empowering or depressing directions.
  • Life Events – Natural to be sad because something crappy happened.

This is the checklist of stuff I go through. For example, I’m having a “life event” issue that I’m not quite ready to share. No I didn’t dropkick my cat through the goalposts of life. I’ll bet 99% of you didn’t get that horrible 70s country song reference. But anyway something crappy is happening that is “sad”  justifiable. But, the question is, am I feeling too sad because of other factors?

What if I ran a few miles? Ate better? Directed my focus to what was not-crappy? Talked to my psychiatrist about a med adjustment?

In other words, what is within my control? And how much of it is just regular old sadness which must be tolerated?

If it sounds like I’m over-analyzing sadness, I’m not. I do want to know, however, what I should be doing to correct and what I should just let happen naturally. For example I’ve come to believe I’m kind of a solemn person in general. I have my moments of fun and joy, but my baseline is sort of neutral. I can learn to accept that. Also I had some bad programming as a child (we all did) by well-intentioned parents. That plays a role, too.

I’m not looking to blame my sadness on anyone or anything. I just want to know what I should be doing. The first thing is to feel it fully and embrace it. Okay – check. Now, at what point do I start a gratitude list or hitting the treadmill? Or do I just let it peter out on its own?

I’m not kidding when I say that I really don’t know how this all works. I feel like I’ve been sad for some time now and I’d really like to figure out a solution. I can get out of bed and perform well at work. You don’t need to hide my electric razor because, well, for one, it couldn’t break skin. Two, I’m do something way more exciting like shoot myself out of a cannon into the next town over.

It would be awesome to just know if this is normal depression and to just ride it out. But I’m not sure it is. I guess I could hit the gym and talk with the doctor. Also my therapist helps with the cognitive parts. I’m just so confused on what’s going on.

No reason to feel sorry for me. My life is actually pretty good. I do struggle, however, with finding happiness. I’m not alone. If anyone knows the absolute answers to this stuff, please let me know. We could bundle it on a 10 DVD video program and sell it on late-night television for $297. I have good hair and white teeth so I’ll be the face and voice. Oh, and the body. I’m kind of the full package.

Tattoo Happy Weirdo
This guy’s got it all figured out. Well, except how to not continually disappoint his parents.

photo credit: philippe leroyer via photopin cc

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