Funk is a word which has many meanings, in fact did you know it derives from a Latin word “fumigare” meaning “to smoke”. For the purpose of this article it refers to that state of being where a person is feeling flat and demotivated, thus leading them to evade or avoid certain tasks.
Its important to understand that funks are a perfectly normal part of life. It is the Yin/Yang ; the balance of life. Which means if / when you find yourself in a funk there will be a reason for it. Often when I find myself in a funk it is usually because I’ve been working too much and my funk reminds me I need to take time out.
Many years ago when I’d find myself in a funk, I would fight it. I’d do everything I could to avoid and evade the feelings until one day I decided to stop fighting it. I started to be aware that my funk had many benefits to it.
I noticed that when I was “funking” it was the only time I would ask for help and reach out to my friends. My funk also helped me to come up with brilliant ideas, strategies and insights. Also it was my catalyst to nurture and take care of myself.
In that moment, where I stopped fighting my funk and allowed it just to be, it vanished. There is a wonderful saying “what you resist; persists”. So I noticed that as I embraced the lesson my funk was trying to teach me, it was no longer needed.
Now when it comes to life lessons, I can be a slow learner, thus yes the lesson (and funk) has occasionally reappeared. However never to the depths that it had previously. This is because when my funk appears I now know the funk has a purpose and usually its to remind me that there is something I need to be doing which I haven’t been.
So your funk has a reason too, it’s trying to get your attention so you can learn a lesson and/or gain insights. Maybe its to take time out or perhaps you taken enough time out. That it’s time to set goals and take action. It could be that your funk is reminding you to be grateful for what you have.
Another possibility is that your funk is reminding you that you need to connect with the earth and ground yourself? or to be aware of what you are thinking, believing and focusing on. Just know that whatever the message is for you, will be right for you.
The way to find purpose in your funk is to simply ask: What is the purpose of me feeling this way today? or What is it I most need today? or What is the lesson or information I need to move forward?
Our divine self speaks to us directly and indirectly. So be aware that the answers may not come to you straight away. To trust that the information you need will be revealed, at the right time.
Also indirect guidance and answers might come via words / insights of someone else. It could be words written in a book, or via a song. Your job is to ask the question, be open to the response and allow for it to be revealed. The more relaxed your are the easier it will come.
Whilst you wait for your specific guidance regarding your funk, there are still things you can do to support yourself in shifting and moving forward.
In her book Thrive, Arianna Huffington writes how gratitude exercises can have tangible benefits. She notes that, “According to a study by researchers from the University of Minnesota and the University of Florida, having participants write down a list of positive events at the close of a day — and why the events made them happy — lowered their self-reported stress levels and gave them a greater sense of calm at night.”
I believe the reason for this is because it gets you to change your focus. there are three elements, one of which focus is, that you can change in order to change how you are feeling.
So make a list; what is good in your life right now? What is it that you are or can be grateful for? Who are you grateful for? What is it that you love doing that makes you happy? What made you smile today?
Get into nature
Being outside has many different being. Most of it which it enables you to ground yourself. Grounding has both spiritual and physical benefits. Grounding is the process of connecting yourself to the earthly plane and bonding with mother earth. Native American’s believe that mother earth is the source of all life and is a great teacher to be observed, listened to and respected. Her energy is nurturing and restoring, assisting us to bring and give life to our hopes, dreams and ideas.
Science tells us that the Earth is abundant with energy, particularly electrons, which have powerful supply of antioxidant effects. When you connect with the ground, preferably via bare feet, you are able to absorb large amounts of these electrons. Effectively you resonate at the same vibration as the Earth.
So go to the beach, park or simply go stand outside on the grass with no shoes on. If you can’t do any of those may be go for a walk and soak in the elements, whether that be the wind, sun or rain. (If the latter just make sure you have a warm shower afterwards).
The origin of the word, goal, has been thought to derive either from the Middle English “gale” meaning “a way or course” or the Old Norse word of “geil” meaning “passage”. Goals thus can be considered as a guiding tool which guide and keep us on course or provide the passage to where we want to be or what we want to have. As well as a way to measure and track how we are progressing.
Imagine setting sail to sea without any co-ordinates as to where your destination will be. Whilst you will find a destination it may not be the destination you were after and you may waste a lot of time and energy in getting there.
This is a great analogy of what life is like without goals. Whilst we are sailing through life and finding ourselves at certain “destinations” they aren’t always the ones we really want to be at or desire. In addition to this we’ve often wasted a lot of energy in the journey of getting to such destination, as the course taken may not have been as direct as it could have been. Energy which could have easily been used more effectively.
Goals have an explainable magnetic quality that can attract situations, people and opportunities in order to support you achieving them. I personally believe that goals are a way to tell the Universe / God / Angels (whomever or whatever you believe in) what it is you want.
If you are unsure of how to set goals perhaps our simple course on goal setting could help: https://innersagisms.thinkific.com/courses/goal-setting-made-simple/preview
Read an inspirational book or watch a movie
Sometimes we need to simply stop and take time out. So why not sit in your favourite place and utilise that time in a productive way. Stories about others can help us get re-inspired.
Most movies and books based on true stories have a message of “against all odds” achievement. That have insights of vulnerability, courage and motivation. That no matter what life has or is throwing you that things CAN change and that you can too.
Some of our favourites are: In the pursuit of Happyness, The Blind Side, Moneyball, Loosing my Virginity, Daring Greatly and Big Magic.
Whether it is going to the gym or getting out for a walk it doesn’t the matter. Exercise is about getting your body moving in a way that suits you.
When you exercise it helps pump blood to the brain and it also releases the “feel good” endorphins and serotonin. It also helps to increase the size of the hippocampus, the functions of which are to regulate emotions and to access long term memories.
In addition, exercise also helps create / increase the connections of the brain’s neurons which also helps with focus, ideas and solutions.
Scientific evidence indicates that when a person writes they access both aspects of their brain. The physical act of writing accesses our analytical and rational left brain as well as engages our creative, intuitive, feeling right brain.
By engaging both hemispheres we increase our innovation, which means we are able to transform and morph from situations yet too we are able to apply different methodology and solutions.
Spend 5-10 minutes listing all the achievements you have had during your day.
Remembering that many things constitute as successes and it is idea for you to record all of them, no matter how big or small.
What constitutes as an action worthy of recording are those actions you don’t usually take for example if you only drink three glasses of water and drink four that constitutes as a success. If you manage to start writing a report that you have been putting off, that constitutes as a success.
I’ve used this tool personally and with many clients. It works brilliantly as a re-focusing and motivational tool.
Many people find nurturing themselves quite difficult, with a lot of people not even sure how to nurture themselves. Self care can come in many forms and it is doing in in a way that is best for you.
It might be going and getting your hairs or nails done, it might be simply doing that yourself. It could be taking your make up off at night, eating the right foods, or drinking water. It could be having a massage or seeing your kinesiologist. It could be going for a walk or sitting at the beach and having an ice cream.
Self care doesn’t necessarily mean spending lots of money yet it could. It is whatever is going to help you feel loved, supported and cared for. My favourite is buying myself flowers.
Change your environment
A definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result. For something to change; something needs to change. Changing your environment relates to many aspects of yourself and life.
It could be changing:
- the environment of your mind, what you focus on and what you talk about.
- what you put into your body as in the food you eat, what you drink (or what you don’t eat and drink)
- your location (inside v’s outside, change of scenery, going to a different cafe or the library)
- the people in your life or the place in which you work.
Remember that funks are a normal part of life, everyone experiences them to some level. The key is to making sure your funk doesn’t go too low and doesn’t last too long. Sometimes one of the suggestions may work and at other times you might need to use a combination. Just know that when you are doing something you are taking action and that action will help support you in taking the action you want to be taking.