We all experience times of mild depression or melancholy that we popularly call “funks.” The key to handling these periods of low energy is to prepare ahead of time and address it rather than give in to it.
Funks often come during or immediately following periods when we’ve experienced something intense either physically or mentally.
As a pastor, I find that Monday is often when I’m most likely to experience the low-energy and mental fatigue of a funk. It’s wonderful to converse with church members before and after the services on Sunday, to lead worship as liturgist or preacher, and the many other things I’m privileged to do on an average Lord’s Day.
It’s also tiring.
On Monday morning, I’m often lacking the spring in my step that I have on Sunday. I’ve discovered that the key to a funk is to address it rather than give in to it. I find that very often at the low points, God uses very tangible means (actions, people, places) to help me recover and emerge into a deeper, fuller experience of fellowship with him.
Here are some things that I find helpful:
- Listen to uplifting music. Your taste will likely dictate here, but I find that Metallica or Rage Against the Machine is not particularly helpful in the low points of life. I often turn to Indelible Grace when I need to remember and recover a sense of God’s presence and covenant promises to me as outlined in Scripture.
- Do something mildly physical. Go for a walk. Clean off your desk. Take out the trash. If you’re feeling up to it, go to the gym and do your normal work out. Simply changing your position and exerting some energy can make a real difference in your outlook.
- Have a conversation with someone you like. Pick up the phone or walk down the hall and talk to a friend. Make sure it’s someone who’s probably in a better place than you emotionally. Just the act of connecting in conversation takes us outside of the morbid self-reflection (the negative inner monologue of: “why me?” “why did that happen?”) that often accompanies a funk.
Read the rest of Jeff’s list HERE.