Evidenced from my lack of interest in blog-world, I've had a rough winter.
I think it's a combination of several things; lack of sunlight (Seasonal Affective Disorder), Vitamin D deficiency, not enough exercise, and some complacency of negative thinking. I have happy lights and vitamins, but honestly, I'm having trouble with more exercise! I'm hoping that with the brightening sunlight and melting snow, this will resolve itself in no time. I'm also thinking the happy lights could go away til October.
The negative thinking has been a harder one to acknowledge and change. I have done Bible studies on the topic, heard sermons, and even discussed the benefits of positive mental attitudes, but somehow this winter I just could not see past the things which I did not have. A wise man (not my husband, this time) explained this as the "Eve Complex." As wonderful of a life, perfect really, as Eve had it, she still could not see past the one thing (literally) that she could not have. This has had a huge impact on me. I have always looked down on Eve and could not understand why she did it. I don't have quite the perfect life that Eve had, but I had focused too much on what I was missing, and not enjoying what I have, just like her. This is an extremely simple version, but simple things are not always easy.
I've also discovered that I am a linear thinker. Almost to a perfectionist level. Instead of feeling as though things are good if they are "pretty good," I think of things as either bad or perfect. You can see where this will set me up for disappointment. I was challenged recently to consider being content with things if they are less than perfect. Let me share how freeing this can be when practiced! And practice it takes, at least for me, I've found.
After sharing some about my struggles, I have discovered I am not in a minority. To avoid the "misery loves company" idea, I'd rather share to help others to avoid this little quick-sand-trap. I also believe that this is not just a positive thinking idea, but rather a very Biblical model. Philippians 4 talks about what we are to pursue with our minds. David prays that God would search his thoughts to check him if he is heading in the wrong direction in Psalm 139:23-24. Paul talks frequently about the power of our thoughts; among which how we ought to take each thought captive to the obedience of Christ in his 2nd letter to the Corinthians.
Knowing that I struggle with this specifically in the winter, I hope that I can remember the importance of placing my thoughts under the authority of the Holy Spirit who dwells in me. I'll admit that I often chose to wallow, thinking I'd just get over it in a day or two, but allowing that little bit is dangerous. Stepping into quicksand just a little is enough to get stuck. And sink. Just ask Eve.