Influence Yourself

Problems can affect us in many way, almost always negatively. We end up being in a funk or depressed or fearful. Some people are logical. They can rationalize everything into something positive. Find that silver lining where nobody else can see. Most of us are emotional. We act based in part on how we feel. The problem is, when there is a problem, we tend to feel like crap.
So how can we start solving our problem when we don't even feel like getting up? First, we probably need to change the way we feel. Here are some simple ways to start:

  1. Be somewhere else. Remember how people talk about the need to "change the scenery?" Sometimes they mean it literally. Go somewhere else. Find a park with lots of greenery around. Take a stroll down the street and breath the fresh air. Go to where there is a vista or a view and look out to the horizon, even if it is on a dingy roof top. Being in nature helps to clear up ones thought. Or take a trip somewhere. Ride the bus or train and just watch the scenery pass by. At the end, ride the bus back. A change in scenery changes the stimuli around us. We receive different inputs and our brains are stimulated differently than if we were to be holed up in the same room the bad news was delivered, reminding us of it again and again. 
  2. Change the mood. Everybody knows the answer to this one. Ask yourself what changes your mood. Good music? A good book? A movie? Do whatever you know that changes your mood. If you are not sure, try something new. Meditation. Clear you thoughts. A problem can mess up your thoughts so much, perhaps you should just empty them out, relax and then start afresh. Try exercise. Working up a sweat can take away our focus on the problem for a while and changes the chemistry within ourselves. If you feel lethargic, tired for no reason, do exercises. That is what I do (not that I do it regularly). After a set routine, you will either feel re-energized or tired out for a nap. After which you'll wake up fresh, ready to take the problem head on.
  3. Think of the good times to come. This sounds strange but it works. Thinking about the good times that will come once the problem is solved, helps us to feel relaxed and focused. It sounds like we're borrowing joy from the future to pay for the pain now. Don't worry. No Enron-like dealings here, spending gains from future successes . By focusing on how you know you may feel like, it helps to keep things in perspective, maybe even motivate you ("Hey, that's what I want to feel like!"). Keep thinking of how the times you are facing now will be looked back on. You'll see it as trivial or as a valuable lesson. This does not guarantee success, though. Emotions are not physical, that is you can't touch it or hold it. But to be able to conjure up good feelings requires no downpayment, only investment in the possible. 
So either change your environment, change the mood or feel good about something, the main idea is to do something. Convince yourself that the problem is a solvable one. Find one of your own way or find several. Keep your tricks or techniques close. I love reading, so I keep a book nearby. If I'm stuck, I pull out the book to read. It changes the scenery for me.
Don't let the problem take us down. Instead, influence ourselves.