By Lauren Anthony
Sometimes the best part about my day is going to bed and forgetting about everything that happened. On these days sadness, an overwhelming emotion for me, seems to be the very reason why everything is not going as planned.
Sadness could be crying or just feeling emotionally drained. Yet, everyone deals with sadness in a different way. Some days it may be a day where breaking down because you spilled a drink and that was the tipping point is what encompasses sadness. Other days it may be a chain reaction of events. Often, we forget that sadness also serves a purpose and we don’t realize how it might be empowering for women.
In 2015, Inside Out came out in theatres and brought a brand new way to look at emotions for both children and parents. This whimsical comedy showed the life of Joy, Anger, Disgust, Fear, and of course Sadness. It showed how the emotions played an essential role in helping Riley deal with what life brings her. Sadness and Joy play a critical role in the movie and teach some rather big life lessons. I encourage anyone reading this article to go check out the movie it is a good one!
What in the world does this movie have to do with this topic? For one, this movie takes on the topic of sadness in a much more manageable approach for any age. It shows what sadness is, but also how sadness can be empowering. Sadness helps characters like Bing Bong find peace of mind when he worries about being forgotten, but also helps Riley makes some important decisions throughout the movie. At the end of day, sadness can be very helpful in many decisions. All jokes aside, let’s talk about sadness in a real way and some methods that could help on those blue days.
“Are you living with low-level sadness?” An article from The Telegraph covers how sadness is felt, how it manifests itself into our daily life, but also considers some solutions to deal with it. When I think about sadness I am thinking about the “what else could go wrong” feeling on those days. So, I really only have two options: 1) to let sadness be what it is in the given situation, 2) validate the sadness and use it in an empowering way to make the best of the situation at hand.
Let’s be honest, it is okay and valid to let you have those days of sadness and deal with what is happening. Yet it is also important to figure out what caused the sadness and some ways to handle the situation.I have three go to methods to alleviate sadness in my life.
- Taking Yoga and Zumba Classes: I take the University of Idaho’s P.E. courses to have some classes that help push any stress and sadness off me. Yoga is amazing if you want an hour of relaxation to come to a quiet and relaxing place with yourself. Yoga gives you a chance to let go any sadness you’re feeling and just be with yourself in the present moment. Zumba is a great way to alleviate sadness as well. Dancing with others and feeling silly makes any sadness go away
- Grabbing Coffee with a friend: It amazes me how much this helps, just getting away from whatever is making you sad and talking to someone. Instead of focusing on sadness, talk about things that make you laugh or just bring you happiness. If you want to talk about sadness with your friend, I encourage it. Finding a safe place is always good, Café Artista in Moscow, Idaho is a great location to just unwind and relax
- Coloring: Many of you have probably heard about Adult Coloring Books and if not, check out the link. You can find them at Michael’s craft store, Jo-Ann Fabrics, in any local bookstores, local supermarkets, you can even find online pages to print out and color. I find this helps with sadness because you can curl up in bed or wherever is comfortable and color a page with nothing else on your mind. Focus on the color and picture, even adding some relaxing and uplifting music in the back.
Now that I have talked about coping with sadness—how is it actually empowering for women. Daily Life from Australia came out with an article recently “Can we re-imagine sadness as an empowering force?”. This article takes sadness into a new view and shows how it is empowering for women. Using sadness to empower oneself, to have a form of power is such an important thing for all women to have. Showing that sadness is empowering helps express an emotion that is at times repressed and frowned upon. This quote from the article really struck me in a sense that sadness is incredibly valid and it can be empowering.
“Sadness is not narcissistic or foolish: it is an informed, rational, articulate, and embodied response to a devastating set of circumstances.”
Sadness is not always the enemy; it has beneficial aspects as well.