Today is a good day isn’t it? For some reason your mind has decided to take a break and leave you alone for about 24 hours. You’re finding yourself laughing till your stomach hurts, wiping away some tears of joy, living in the present moment and smiling for a lot longer. Make the most of it. But the best advice I can give to you, is not to label it. Don’t label it as a ‘good’ day. Because every day is a good day. Some days are just better than others. Today is a better day. It’s one of the good ones. But I’m here to tell you, that if tomorrow comes around and you’re starting to feel low again, and you start to feel like you’re taking two steps back… believe me, you’re not.
Having a ‘better’ day is great. It’s rare. For some people, a better day may come once a month, others once every few months, but whenever it comes, embrace it. Don’t think too much about how good of a day it is, just go with it until it comes to a close. At the end of the day, before you fall asleep, write down the date and three reasons why it was better than others. One of the biggest issues particularly with patients who suffer with intrusive thoughts, is that the moment you label your day as a day where ‘your mind isn’t thinking much’ you’re giving notice to that mind that has clearly left you alone. And what happens when you give that mind attention? It wakes up – shoots right up and reminds you of all the reasons you shouldn’t be happy. Don’t let it. Don’t let the mind interfere with your good mood.
You will find numerous days where you’re feeling a lot better than others, and your mind will start to convince you that it’s only going to get worse. That is why you should try to avoid giving it any acknowledgment at all. If you wake up feeling great, go about your day like normal. If your mind starts to play up, tell yourself ‘that’s okay, today I am not affected by you’, soon enough it will lower its volume and you will go back to enjoying your day. Of course this is easier said than done, but it is still important.
The importance of this letter is so you can remind yourself that even on the better days, tomorrow’s outcome isn’t promised. The truth is, you may wake up tomorrow morning and feel even worse than the day before. That is the issue with mental illness, you just never know what your mind and body will choose from the lucky dip, you just take what you can get and work with it each waking moment.
But regardless, I tell you this so you don’t feel discouraged. I tell you this because I know you may be feeling great now, and tomorrow you may be feeling crappy, but this is okay. Treasure those moments that you are smiling from joy, no matter how rare they are. They are the ones that mean the most and they are the ones you are going to reflect on in a few years time.
All I can remind you is, that everything is okay. Not is going to be, nor will be, but is. In this present moment, everything is okay. Because after all, isn’t that all that matters?