Raise your hand if you feel anxiety or depression when it rains? It’s pretty common for most people to feel this way with rainy weather. The dark sky, the crying rain, and the cool damp air…it all screams sad for some people. I myself love rainy days. One of my former employers used to say, “It’s just one of those days you want to curl up with a good book by the fire and eat cookies all day.” Unfortunately, it gives our daughter anxiety. She plays over and over in her head what would happen if the wind gets too strong, if the lightning strikes our house, or if someone gets in a car accident. After a particularly difficult morning (which is pretty common), I decided to try to see if we could change her brain a little bit.
Our Minds are Like a Train
Our psychologist tells us, “Your mind is like a train and it’s used to traveling on this track of worry.” On this rainy morning, she refused to get on the bus to go to school. Everything was a fight that morning. Breakfast, clothes, backpack, lunch, the bus, her brothers…all of it. I’m totally used to this fight, but since our family is on this journey to get better, I needed to see if I could come up with a solution. What if we could see if she could look forward to the rain, instead of dread it? What if we could change the track of worry, to a track of anticipation? So that day, I went and bought her some rain boots.
Turning the Rain into Joy
When I was a little girl, one of my favorite things to do was play in the rain with my rainboots and my umbrella. My umbrella was pink and had a cat carved on a wooden handle. I loved that umbrella. I would pretend I was Mary Poppins and would stomp in the puddles until my fingers were numb from the cold. The thought struck me that I really wanted my daughter to have this same experience. When she came home, I told her the next rainy day we were going to play in the rain. Now she had something to look forward to. Every time it even kind of looked like it was going to rain, she was excited instead of worried. And here she is, enjoying the rain. She was all smiles and we loved being together talking about how the rain is God’s gift to the earth.
Could this work for you?
Is there something that gives you so much mental stress that you could divert your mind into excitement instead of worry? Could you maybe tell yourself, “I think I’m ready for this challenge today”? Is there some creative way you could trick your mind into believing that you’re actually excited about something you usually stress about? Have you ever done this yourself? I would love to hear about it in the comments! Please share!