Now, I’ll start by saying that I’ve been bitten once before writing loosely on what I am going to write about, and as the old saying goes, once bitten, twice shy, but I’m going to go ahead anyway.
Please stay until the end.
I like to think of myself as a generally positive person with a pretty good outlook on life. It hasn’t always been this way and I have done a lot of work behind the scenes to build and maintain this way of living. Someone dropped a comment the other day along the lines of “Jamie, do you ever have a bad day? I’ve never once seen you have a bad day”.
My response, “of course I have bad days, but when I am in the public or professional arena, I am declaring myself fit to play, so play I will”.
They decided that I must not be human and I had to laugh as an ex of mine called me “the Terminator” once, and I have to say, it stuck with me for a while, but I don’t care anymore.
I’m a thinker, it’s what I do, I’ve been called an over thinker many a time but I feel that this is where I do my best work and it works for me. Reflecting on this comment about me having a bad day, I thought about a lot of things, including the headline to this piece just now. I thought about a ‘typical day’ if ever there is such a thing, and I thought about providing a little snippet into how one gives off the impression that they never have a bad day.
Let’s take a look.
Alarm goes off at 5am: “Gym or keep sleeping? Do I want to hit my body goal? Have I hit my body goal? Should I sleep longer and go tonight? No, I know what I am like, I’ll convince myself I can have the extra sleep now because I am going to go to the gym tonight, but I know I won’t go, because I have convinced myself time and time again that I am too tired by the end of the day and I won’t put in any effort and there will be no point. And if I don’t go this morning, and don’t go tonight, then I will have missed my routine, so I can’t go for the rest of the week now, and I’ll just start again next week, but I won’t, I’ll get a bit chunky and then restart the last 9 months all over again and hate every second of it. But I have a goal, and I have that goal clear in my mind, ok, I’ll go, oh wait, but if I am doing upper body today, then I need to do upper body in two days time too, and I have that thing on in two days time, maybe I’ll just go for a walk after work, I can manage a walk.”
05:01 am: Get’s up and goes to the gym.
Because if I don’t get on top of my mind, it will get on top of me, trust me, it did once before about 3 years ago and it scared the shit out of me. I don’t like to recall the past too often these days, but when I do think about that moment, I remember vividly thinking that I had gotten into such a state of dark thinking that I felt like the walls were caving in and there was no way out. I remember watching fight club, one of my all time favourite movies and books and having to turn it off because I could not handle even the noise coming from the TV. It was a low point that’s for sure, but something inside of me was determined to take back the control that I had lost, to get back on top of it, and as quickly as I could, and, I did.
It is not some quick fix where you just decide and then sing happily ever after and life is fucking amazing. It is a constant battle with thoughts and behavioural patterns and it is a constant reshuffling of all facets of what makes up a human mind. Some days it can feel like you’ve run a marathon before you’ve even left the house for a day of work or whatever is on for the day, other days you can leave and come home and feel like not a second has gone by.
Putting in the hard yards is worth it.
I don’t know if anyone reading this knows of or remembers “back in the day” when there was only TWO TV channels (in the country anyway where I grew up” and at the end of the night when there was no more programming, there was this symbol thing and kind of a static type noise which indicated that TV programming would resume in the morning, like most people’s lives used to, when everyone was a bit calmer about things.
Anyway, not having a go, but making a point. When I feel, see or hear my thoughts going off into a land that is leading me back to that night when I could not even bear to have my favourite movie on, I imagine that end of programming symbol thing and the static, and that is my QUEUE for my bad thoughts to cease, and for me to start up my good thoughts.
Again, some days I need to do this on the hour, other days I don’t need to do it at all, there were the early days where I would almost need to do it first thing in the morning and leave myself on dormant for the day just to get through it, but I suppose it’s like running, it’s fucked when you start but eventually you get better at it.
What am I even rambling on about here today?
Well, back to the beginning, if you don’t get on top of it, it’ll get on top of you, and what I am talking about here is life, and whatever definition of life you live by. And at the start how I said that I have been bitten once before when writing bluntly on the topic of good and bad days, in no way am I taking away from the fact that there are people among us who have clinical diagnosis’ and require much more intensive levels of care and support than imagining a TV program shut down symbol and noise, I am merely talking about what worked for me due to a lot of people asking me how I stay so upbeat all the time (well, when it’s game on anyway).