Unsettled

Lately I've been feeling 'unsettled'. That is the best way I can describe it. I think this happens to me every year around this time. (Ok, so maybe this is earlier than usual but its winterish behavior for me.) I have no complaints but I'm looking at the new year and wondering if I'm pointing myself in the right direction when it comes to career, family, improving myself, etc. What will the old lady version of myself wish she could have told the 33 year old me?

awesome photo found at pinterest

I'm a planner - always have been - and I don't feel like I have a good map for my future right now. Planning things usually comes naturally and lately its been more of a struggle. Maybe not knowing is a good thing but it doesn't make me feel too comfortable.

And just in case you were wondering I'm not complaining. I know I've lived a mostly charmed life so far; I'm proud to have accomplished what I have so far; I have lots to look forward to. This blog is a clear no whine zone and I plan to keep it that way. I don't need to know where Im going to know that I have been blessed in more ways than I can possibly count.
I'm not feeling depressed or down. Just unsure of where I'm heading which is weird for me. Maybe I should embrace it but it just doesn't feel right.

But I was just wondering - what do you do to get yourself out of a funk? anyone else feel the same way and figure a way around it?

64 comments:

  1. I'm in a funk too, it's just this time of year, we're all still coming down off the high of the holidays! I plan to switch up my work schedule a bit, and definitely start exercising again!

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  2. Well, I've found "funks" especially in the wintertime, are more of a vitamin D issue than general ennui. The past two winters {since I've been supplementing}...the funks have disappeared...

    Fresh air, too. Even if it's like 20 below. Here in Chicago, I bundle up like the younger boy in The Christmas Story. Force myself to walk. Even 5 minutes outside without a purpose does wonders.

    Finally, painting. If I am not creating, I am cranky. Period. The wintertime is prime time to "get it done". I've become a master of to-do lists...

    Here's to beating the winter blues...

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  3. Strangely enough I've felt the same since before the holidays! So happy to see I'm not the only one in a funk right now... Once I figure out a way to get my groove back, I'll let you know :)

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  4. Oh, good luck..........hopefully you will get good suggestions since I am pretty much the same way in January (Year end work busy time of year ugh).

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  5. I have been in many funks before... randomly. Usually when I become entrapt in a funk it means I need to start working out...NO joke... I usually do workout 4-5 days a week [well just running] and honestly, when I get out there and go for a good run, it's the start of a 'pick me up'. I start to feel better and like my old self again and that's why I try to keep up with it because if I stop, I start to head into that funk again.

    But everyone is different and that's just what works for me... Maybe try something different? Try something out of the ordinary, even if it's something simple like... for example, if you don't normally have a 'movie night' at your house, sit down and have a movie night. Just simple little things like that go a long way :)

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  6. I was in a funk a couple of months ago. I find I get that way when I get inside my head too much. To combat it, I make sure I get outside (easy to do here yearround in FL) and get some physical activity. And no, I am not a workout fiend. Also, the more organized my house is, the better my general mood, so de-cluttering my surroundings always helps. (I suspect you don't have any issues in this area!) Finally, I love getting lost in a new book! (I also second the vitamin D recommendation from Nicolette. And a super-B complex vitamin can be a great pick-me-up if you are feeling lethargic.) Take care!

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  7. It's hard to be in a funk, I got in a funk a couple months ago that lasted for several weeks...the only way out of it was to figure out a plan that I could get excited about that didn't have to do with others giving me a green light or not. You certainly have endless possibilities, it's just a matter of deciding what is most important. Janell

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  8. I absolutely felt the same way. So I decided to do something just for me. And I started taking an Upholstery class last week and I am in LOVE! It is the creative outlet i was craving and makes me feel like im taking a step in the right direction!

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  9. For me, it's trying to find something good in the funk. Maybe the funk is there to motivate you, change your direction, help you figure something out.... I usually don't try to force myself out of it - just work with what ya got until you wake up one day and say "self, get outta this funk." I'm still new to your blog but I think you have great talent. Nothing wrong with being a little funky every now and again :)

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  10. I've been in one since last October. I'm working my way out by focusing on making things better rather than sitting in the funk. I'm as surprised as anyone that my approach is actually working.

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  11. Create More = less funk

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  12. When I'm in a funk it's usually over something I can't control. To pull me out of it though I focus on something I can control like cleaning or reorganizing. Cleaning out the linen closet or going through all of my make-up can do wonders haha.

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  13. I'm right with you... I've been trying to exercise more, even if it means bundling up to walk the dogs in 23 degree weather (though I'll be honest, that hasn't been happening too often) or popping in a Pilates or yoga dvd before I sit down when I get home from work. I've also been trying to listen to a lot more upbeat music- it's tough to be in a funk when you're dancing around the house. :-)

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  14. I work as an art thearpist in a psych hospital on weekends- and an excersizise that I have patients do (and that I enjoy myself)- is making a list of "simple pleasures" little things that you enjoy in life that cost little to nothing. I feel like it helps you focus on things that you might normally overlook- especially when you are feeling down and grasping for something to bring you up.
    Here's a few from my list:
    a neatly made bed each morning
    purple sand
    baby kisses
    smelling freshly cut grass
    peonies
    Glee
    perfectly toasted marshmallows
    woolybear caterpillers....you get the idea:)

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  15. great ideas so far and i have to agree with working out. although i RARELY have the motivation to do so, once i do, it really does help. the brisk walk in chilly weather actually sounded refreshing to me. and i HATE cold weather. HATE it. i might add, do a little somthing for yourself. something out of the ordinary was a good idea. movie night. dinner with a girlfriend. make something.

    when i get "down", i don't want to do anything or go anywhere. heck, i don't want to dry my hair or put on regular clothes. and somedays, thats ok. we need to just do nothing. but other days, dry your hair (referencing myself of course, *wink) and get out there and smile. it'll feel good.

    ok, now to read my own encouragement so we can start feeling better together because January sure seems to be a rough month for us all. makes me wish we could all sit and chat over coffee right.this.moment. :)

    xoxo,
    Amanda

    www.perfectimperfection13.blogspot.com

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  16. Thanks for the suggestions. Never thought about Vitamin D.

    I should say that Im not really depressed or down really..its more just a feeling of being unsure about what I should be doing to get going in the right direction for the future. On a day to day basis, Im doing pretty good. I guess I'm just used to having a 5 year plan and right now I don't feel so sure about what I should be doing in a year, no less 5.

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  17. You've got a lot of good advice here already (another yes to exercise, it helped me so much to be more energetic and excited about life) but let me add one more... sometimes I just shut off all the outside stimulation - TV, the internet, whatever steals my time... and focus on reading, watching good movies, cooking a long meal, taking a long shower... these things make me think about important things and then think about me, my future, etc.. with no interruptions. Time stretches out and your thinking becomes clearer and you feel better, happier, more focused.

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  18. I just read your latest comment, and this great website came to mind - www.iwillteachyoutoberich.com Stupid name but it's a great blog and makes you think about your future, etc, perhaps you could check it out?

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  19. I think you need to plan a new trip...and maybe try yoga.
    Have you been to Mexico? I want to go, so to keep you busy and out of your funk, you could just do a nice post about Mexico for me!

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  20. I've been feeling the same way! I have nothing much to complain about but still feel really restless. I was talking to a co-worker who feels the same way and she keeps a "vision board" taped to the inside of her closet. Every morning when she gets ready she's reminded of the things she wants to accomplish for the year. It sounds super cheesy I know, but I'm actually thinking of trying it. If anything, I think it'll actually force me to have a concrete idea of 'what' my goals are for 2011. :)

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  21. Patti9:44 AM

    I think if you leave it alone for awhile, ideas and plans for the future will come. And helping someone else out who's having a hard time right now or needs an ear always seems to make my life a little brighter.

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  22. This time of year (and having no heat!) can certainly contribute to putting one in a funk. I think we all go through those. I don't have any great advice to give; maybe just take a break, if you can. . .Hang in there!

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  23. I really understand what you're saying.

    I have a fantastic marriage, beautiful boys, a life that is so blessed, and sometimes feel what you've described so well.

    For me, being around my "girls"...the women that know me best. Their energy alone can lift me back to the place of "knowing".

    I'm a little bit older than you and have also learned that sometimes we are suppose to be still...for just a little while.

    Thank you for the beautiful inspiration your blog shares.

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  24. When I am feeling 'funky' I like to turn on S-Club-7 and deep clean a section of the house. Throw out something I'm not using, and then take the dog for a long walk. It's a bunch of little things that get me moving, allow me to accomplish clear (if small goals) and gives my head some free space to THINK about things. What I want to do 'next', figure out what I'm unhappy with in my life and how I could change it.
    I also have the bad habit of cutting my own hair when I am feeling 'unsettled'. I've been doing it since I was 14 so it's no biggy for me, but I wouldn't recommend it to the faint of heart.

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  25. Yes! I actually did a similar post today. Mine is more of an upheaval not really a funk. I feel like time is flying by and that the baby is coming and I feel really unsettled, unprepared and unsure. I think I'm experience a good ole priority shift in my life and career. Right now I commute an hour each way to work and that's not realistic after the baby is here so things have go to change in a big way and that makes me nervous. I always find that a project (but you've had lots those) or immersing myself in something that gets my mind off of things helps.

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  26. Anonymous10:02 AM

    I have found it always helps to take my eyes off my own funk and serve someone else.....volunteer a day reading in a local skilled nursing facility, clean up a walking trail just by volunteering your time, or go to your local elementary school and help tutor kids who are having difficulty reading. When you look outside yourself and serve others your little issues will disappear. Dawn

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  27. Anonymous10:12 AM

    Exercise + create + eat fruits and veggies + EAT CHOCOLATE!

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  28. Volunteer in a creative field perhaps? Or expand the purpose of the blog? Enter a photography competition?

    I think maybe the issue is that you're considering changing direction to some degree, but you're not exactly sure what that means and it's a little frightening to let it happen organically.

    Been there. BEEN. THERE.


    Kelly

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  29. I can understand you wanting to have a plan for the future, but maybe it's a good idea to let it just ride once in a while and not force it on yourself. Life is very unpredictable after all, and has a way of messing up the best of plans, so my advice would be to just accept the present situation as a time of rest, reflection, rejuvenation and input and see what happens. It may be that at this time of year, especially in cold climates, we are supposed to hibernate a little. That said I definitely agree with exercising. I try to walk four miles a day and it is a great mood lifter and acts a bit like meditation and also with taking Vitamin D. I have been taking 3000 IUs a day this winter (less in summer) and so far not even a sniffle and I think my mood has been better.

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  30. I get in funks as well at times. I think fresh air and sunlight (real or natural helps) also planning a fun trip always helps me as something to look forward to.

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  31. I'm the same exact way this time of year. In fact, I've tried to hold out posting about it this year because I basically would say the exact same thing I said last year. :-) I was talking to my mom about it the other day and she says it's probably because I've been running a million miles a minute since October and things are finally slowing down and I don't know what to do with myself! I hate to be bored, but get overwhelmed when I'm too busy, so go figure! I've just been trying to pile my plate up as much as I can, work on home projects I've been putting off and getting excited about some fun Valentine's projects for my son's first year in real school! So, know that you are not alone and it's not uncommon. Hope getting it out there and hearing all of our comments makes it a little more bearable!

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  32. I had the same panicky feeling early in my 30s. And I am presently going through that. I feel like I need to do something that makes me blissfully happy (apart from the 3 kids and hubby). What that is? I can't articulate, but I will find a way.

    I wish you the best in figuring it all out. And you will--have faith.

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  33. Take it from a fellow 33 year old who's in the same boat. I cannot put my finger on it, but something is amiss... or missing. I, also, am very happy with my life, with the decisions I've made and where I've been. I just cannot help but think there has to be something around the corner. Something I can get excited about... something for me, but something that will contribute to my family, to society. Ugh. I cannot explain it.... I need a dream. And I need liscence to dream that dream as intensely as I want.... and do something *different*.

    Anyways, I'm sure I'm not making any sense. I'm only 1/3 the way through my first cup of coffee ;)

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  34. I always feel down during the winter months. Doesn't help that we're expecting another snow storm tomorrow! I wouldn't focus on a 5 yr plan. Like you said it's hard enough to plan out for 1yr. Focus one short-term goals and one goal at a time. Look at the glass as half full and not half empty;)

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  35. This is such a "go, go, go" city, and we're so used to it, that we may feel uncomfortable if we don't suddenly have a million things grabbing our attention. I don't think you always have to have an answer in place. This might just be a transitional period. Sooner or later, something will manifest itself. Sometimes just trying new hobbies, or doing something new to me brings me a new sense of joy, clears my head, and opens up possibilities.

    And I second the Vitamin D thing. They say it can have an effect on mood.

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  36. Dear 33 year old you -
    You are doing enough. And you are exactly where you need to be.

    I'm off to take some Vitamin D...thanks for the always engaging blog. You have particularly fabulous entries...and lovely commentors.
    Warmest regards -
    38 year old me

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  37. I don't know, but when you figure it out, will you let us all know? I don't want to do anything!

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  38. Here are my usual things to make me feel better. When I can distract my mind on another subject, usually the answer I'm needing comes bouncing to the front of my mind.

    So I . . . eat lots of good dark chocolate, shop, drink lots of wine, sketch, focus on my baby and furbabies, date night with hubby, workout, try and learn a new skill (its sewing right now). Basically anything that makes me happy and will get my mind distracted so my subconcious can go to work. Good luck!

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  39. Anonymous12:42 PM

    If you are planning on having kids, then 33 is the time to get pregnant as it is better to have a baby before turning 35. Plus think of all planning and decorating you could do for a nursery. I'm pregnant right now so my comment is biased :)

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  40. The best way for me to deal with these things is to take action. Try new things and get everything in order.

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  41. New adventures always get me out of a funk. A little getaway to a close-by cabin or a big trek to Mt. Everest and back.

    Oh and sexy times with my favorite man usually does the trick too.

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  42. Sometimes I think when I don't have a big project looming or huge decisions to be made, I feel as if I am not doing enough and then I fell like I am spinning with no direction because there is no finish line to run towards. And winter weather doesn't help anybody!

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  43. Anonymous1:22 PM

    I feel the same way, although I am older than you are. I wouldn't say it's a funk, although every winter, I wonder why I'm not in some tropical location, but for that, vitamin D and exercise do help a lot.

    I think it's more that I'm trying to figure out exactly what I want to do. I feel like I'm moving in the right direction, but was stalled for a few years, with an evil boss, lack of discipline, etc. I actually like the visionboard idea, and I've also written down concrete goals for myself.

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  44. If nothing else, it's nice to know I am in good company. I think we all go through times of "funk", and it seems to hit a lot of people this time of year. The holidays are over, and the cold weather has set in. Kind of a let down...My goal this year was to Simplify, and for me that might mean not having any set plans this year!!

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  45. My fool proof solution is to crack open a bottle of wine and watch the movie "A Good Year." It instantly transports me to France and always leaves me with a smile on my face...and the wine, well the wine always leaves me with a tingle in my veins. : )

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  46. Larissa S.2:52 PM

    I have been in a funk for the past 5 months. I have nothing to complain about, my husband is great, I have an adorable 3 year old daughter. But something just hasn't felt right for 5 months. I changed my diet and added exercise and I started to see a glimmer of change. Slowly, I am finding that through subtle changes in my life I am uplifting myself. I force myself to not work every night of the week. I added reading a book into my nightly routine. I started thinking through the fun things I want to do in the next year. I turn 30 this year and I want to make it count. I even went so far to see my doctor. We all go through funks, just make changes now. I let myself get so far in a funk it was affecting me in so many ways and I realized I wasn't enjoying what life had to offer.

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  47. You always comment on my blog when I have posts like this so I couldn't NOT (double negative, natch) comment. These funks are the worst, because nothing is actually wrong, things just don't feel right.

    Normally I like to get things off my chest (hence the posts you've commented on) and then I throw myself into something. Whether it is school work, crafting, re-doing decor in a room, cooking or even just moving furniture around, the wheels start to turn as a work my mind. Often I realize where the funk is coming from and I can attack said funk (at least until spring comes and it goes away!)

    Hope you hop outta this funk soon!

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  48. my trick is to tackle a project i have been putting off and dreading. as soon as it is done, i feel better- like a load off, and i CAn do the things i really don't want to do. and i play good music while i do it. really- that always gets me over a hump.

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  49. I have a margarita. Unless it's before 1 p.m.

    :-)

    I was in a funk for most of the second half of 2010, so I hear you. I found house projects kept me pleasantly distracted. As much as I'm looking forward to wrapping up (for now at least!) not sure what I'll do with project downtime!!

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  50. Anonymous4:33 PM

    Yes! I think you need to have a baby! If your are thinking that you don't want to have regrets when you get older then you should have a baby soon. I am not pregnant. Only biased.

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  51. i feel the same way. I have been in a major funk. Yeah the idea and project thing is good but geezzz really! I don't know maybe it has just to do with everything we hear on TV and everywhere we turn it is just negative..I don't no honestly...And the baby thing definitely gets the mind off oneself..No more time for you funk are not!!! Just part of the process of life..Stay warm!

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  52. oh i know exactly how you feel! i could have written this post myself - i've always been a huge planner and right now...i don't really have a solid direction which kinda freaks me out. but i think i have an idea....and as hokey as it sounds i'm kinda following my heart and going on faith right now that it's the right direction and things will work out. i too asked myself the same question...what would my old lady self wish i had done or tried at 29....and i came up with an answer and am going with it.

    i don't really have an answer as to how to get out of the funk...follow your heart? sounds hokey i know but maybe listen to that little voice? i dunno. but i hope you feel less unsettled soon :)

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  53. With me, it has been the wintertime. It just gets to be to gray. When my things are in order, my life is in order. I don't feel the funk. I had been in a bad one with this last move. Two in less than 9 months just about did me in. Today it was a matter of getting the checkbook done and all my receipts organized. I really don't have any advise for you but you will figure it out. You always do.

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  54. Anonymous8:03 PM

    I think I feel the same as you. I'm not depressed or down, I'm quite a happy person and optimistic about most things. I sometimes find myself wanting more of "something", but I don't know exactly what that "something" is suppose to be. I have not a clue. My life has been easy. I just turned 34. I sometimes wonder what my path is suppose to be...I went to college, happily employed in my chosen field, married to a wonderful person, traveled to Europe a couple of times. My life is grand and I'm lucky I've never had to deal with any hard life struggles. But, I want something more....I'm just not sure what I'm searching for....or should be searching for... Maybe it's a 30-something thing when you wonder if you're making the right choices career-wise, or the decision to have or not have kids. I see my friends around me getting married and having babies but I've never wanted kids. I do wonder if when I'm older I'll regret not having kids. I wonder how best to improve myself and how to continue to learn new things when there is so much to learn in this world and so much information to take in. My twenties just flashed by and I'm afraid my thirties are going to feel like that when I'm in my forties. :) Is this what happens when we age....time passes so quickly and I guess I want to make sure I'm making the right choices to satisfy that 90 year-old that I'll grow into if I'm lucky enough to live 56 more years.

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  55. Just "follow" ed you on pinterest though I'm not on there often at all.

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  56. Run.
    Write.
    Consume Vitamin B + Vitamin D.
    Do something unexpected.
    Treat yourself.

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  57. Ok. Let's book a flight to Miami, ASAP. I really think it will help. I need sun. I need heat. I have Winter blues:(

    xo
    Amy R.

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  58. Anonymous11:15 PM

    Sunshine, exercise, write a list of things you are grateful for at least a page long.

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  59. I hear you (and it doesn't sound like complaining at all). Perhaps it comes with age. I just turned 32 & I've been ruminating over my life's direction too. Kids or no kids? Career change? Should I suck it up & just enjoy the perfectly fine life I have?

    This sounds hokey & I know it, but sometimes unsettled feelings are a blessing in disguise.........they make you re-evaluate. I find that I try to do too much too fast 24/7. Slowing down is the only way I can get out of my funks.

    Hang in there. Do I need to show up @ your limestone w/ some fun cocktails? =]

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  60. when I am in a funk it is usually because I am so overwhelmed with all the things I have to do. So, like many comments have said...it is time to make time for me...so I run...., cook, craft take hot bubble baths...enjoy my family instead of being frustrated by them and best of all spend time with my good friends...that usually works...and I am usually inspired by them and it helps me to push through. Oh ya...I start eating better and taking my vitamins...

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  61. selfishness. that's my cure for funks. take a day and blow everyone and everything off (don't be mean, just don't do anything you don't want to). get a pedicure. spend money on something you probably shouldn't. go someplace that makes you happy. go to ikea (not only is it a place of wonderous idea-brewing, but those cinnamon rolls have air-born endorphins in them, i'm convinced). selfishness, in small amounts, is the best way to get back to YOU.

    {and not to be presumptious about the other areas of your life, but i like to spend a little time with the man upstairs. when i am unsure of my direction, i just have to remember i am in this place and time for a reason. no matter how unclear or twisted that reason may be, it reveals itself sooner or later. it just takes a little patience.}

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  62. I totally feel you. I am in quite a sad shape myself and feel like this winter, it's hit me even harder. Even though I have good things to look forward to in the future, I just seem to be in this deep funk! Yes, funk is a good way to put it. What cheers me up though is spending quality time with the hubby, reading a humorous chic lit book, or baking. I guess doing the "small" pleasurable things in life makes everyday look brighter and more optimistic =).

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  63. I get it. Kick the husband out of the house, turn on cheesy 90s music and dance around in your pjs. Instant mood buster!

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  64. I'm glad to know I'm not the only one in a funk. Not depressed or something, but just waiting for the next opportunity to come along. I feel it too. I don't have many projects on the radar, either home or graphic design-wise, and I'm just feeling unsure of my next step.

    So no, you're not the only one.

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