Let's first start with ways you can respond to a grouch.
1. Shake it off. "A key reminder when dealing with a grouch is to understand that in most cases, it isn’t about you and you can’t control their behavior. Sometimes, all you can do is shake it off and leave them be. Letting the little things slide will be a lot less exhausting for you, and help you keep a positive outlook. Do your best to move on without passing judgment and the negative-Nelly in your life may pick up on and eventually mirror your positive attitude and body language."
2. Question the situation. "Someone who is grouchy or having a bad day may not even realize that they’re being rude, so often saying, “You seem irritable today. Is there something bothering you?” can help. Who knows? By just asking, you may even be able to get them to open up about something you can help with — or give them someone to talk to. You can offer empathy and compassion without climbing into the pit of despair with them."
3. Simply be kind. This is my mom's preferred method for dealing with our neighbor. "Your first instinct might be to ignore someone who is in a grouchy mood. In certain cases, like at work, that may not be an option. So just be kind. Instead of allowing someone’s sour mood to bring you down, don’t be afraid to smile and say hello. Lift them up. Offer to give a hand when they’re having trouble with something. Negativity can spread like wildfire, but so can love and kindness if you give it a little time and patience. Sometimes a simple, “I hear you” or a hug can turn the tide."
Now, let's look at ways to ungrouch a grouch who lives with you.
1. If the grouchy human you live with is you, when you feel a "mood" coming on, take five minutes and allow yourself time to be miserable, complain, and go to the dark side. "Sometimes your inner grouch just needs some attention and then it will have less influence." Once you acknowledge your inner grouch and give it a little space, your surly mood will dissolve on its own.
2. Doing something silly can make any grouch feel better, regardless of their age. "Reconnecting with the child-like joy of blowing bubbles or jumping in rain puddles can put a smile on your face," So don't take your grouch too seriously, even if it's you. Do something fun and silly and just watch what happens. You'll be amazed!
3. Eat happy foods. What we eat can have a huge effect on how we feel and what our moods are like; change your food and change your mood. So what foods can help humans be happier? Hint: it's not donuts. Foods high in vitamin B (seafood, kale, and eggs) and foods rich in omega 3s, like salmon, are also mood boosters.
4. As mentioned earlier, simply being kind to the grouch can work wonders. especially if the grouch in question is you. Random acts of kindness can seem like tiny things but they reap big benefits. So the next time someone is being a grouch, find a way to bless their life. These small acts will improve their outlook on life, as well as your own.
5. Name your grouch. if you're the one acting grumpy, experts say that giving your grump "a name may help validate your feelings while at the same time helping you to distance from it. Negative feelings and thoughts may be one aspect of your experience, but they are not you."
6. Digestion can play a key role in affecting your mood. Gut health is super important. Making sure the grumpy human in your life eats fermented foods like yogurt, can go along way toward easing their irritability. Yours, too. So don't forget to eat yogurt or take a probiotic for good gut health.
Take is National Grouch Day. So while you might be tempted to try and "fix your grouch," today is not the day to begin. This is their day so let them enjoy their grouchiness. Tomorrow will be here before you know it and then you can, with a clear conscience, implement a few or all of these trips for ungrouching the grump in your life.
Don't forget, check out my website home page every Thursday this month for a new Halloween Fun Fact. Tomorrow is, of course, Wednesday which means that my teacher, the very wise Dharma frog will be here with more of his froggy wisdom. See you then?