The Old Bra Funk

 
 

People, much like boobs, need support. Otherwise, they are bound to fall. Duh.

So imagine, if you will, that you are a giant pair boobs.

Still with me? Good.

In the case of boobs, support is often provided by a complex system of fabric and wire referred to as a brassiere or bra. Now, any woman will tell you that a good bra can make all the difference. However, when one wears an old bra -- the kind that's been stretched out over time, has lost all elasticity, with straps that are basically noodles -- it becomes a pretty fruitless endeavor. That thing is really not going to offer any type of legitimate support.

As people, our metaphorical bras -- the source of our support -- are usually our friends and family.

But what if that support system, like a crazy old bra that you never stop wearing, isn't actually offering any real support, especially when you need it?

That seems to be the type of funk you might be experiencing: a classic Old Bra Funk. For one reason or another, the help and care you need from other human beings isn't available right now. And that can be a painful thing.

Here are a few reasons why you might be experiencing such a funk:

Reason #1: You spend a lot of time investing in and caring for other people (because, hello, you're a solid person), but you often neglect to ask for care in return. That said, when things get rough, you're not exactly sure who to turn to, and that can be an isolating feeling.

Reason #2: You are endeavoring to do something that your peeps just don't understand. Perhaps it's a new career or a creative outlet or you've gotten really into or, I don't know, bread-baking or something. It's not that your friends don't want to support you in these passions of yours. It's simply that they don't have a frame of reference for what it is you are doing (i.e. they don't "get it"), and that leaves you feeling misunderstood.

Reason #3: You are an independent and self-sufficient human being. You thrive on being able to problem-solve, make your own decisions, and you like it that way. But even the most independent among us, at times, need the support of others (DID WE LEARN NOTHING FROM KELLY CLARKSON'S 2003 HIT, MISS INDEPENDENT?) and when you're so used to relying on only yourself, it can be hard to switch gears to gather support from others.

Reason #4: This is a tough one, so I'm just going to rip this bandaid off quickly: maybe the people in your life right now just kind of suck. There, I said it. Perhaps the community you've developed is actually a toxic one. Perhaps you are spending time around people who hurt you more than they care for you and who make you feel far less valuable than you are.

All of these things can certainly leave your metaphorical life boobs feeling like they are wearing the world's worst bra. And that's a mega bummer.

But the good news is that it's a totally rectifiable bummer. We'll be working on ways to move past your funk throughout the rest of this series, but in the meantime, here are some things you can focus on this week:

If you're feeling like a giant pair of boobs with a really terrible bra...

1. As much as you can manage it this week, try to spend time around people who energize you (and not so much time around people who don't energize you unless neglecting said individuals would be a criminal offense). Sure, in life, you've got to be around all kinds of people -- those who give, those who take, those who annoy, those who affirm, those who tear down. But this week, you are in an Old Bra Funk, and you've got to take care of yourself before you can take care of anyone else.

2. Make a plan to be with someone who simply makes you happy. And by the way, don't just look for obvious friends and family members, those whose presence carries a real emotional weight for you. Instead, perhaps try to think of the individuals in your life with whom you maybe have a simpler relationship -- an acquaintance who brightens your day, an old friend who you miss, your local barista, etc. It doesn't have to be a major Plan with a capital P, but make sure that this week you get around someone who makes you feel good about yourself.

3. Send a "help" text. It can be hard to dive deep into an intimate sharing relationship with someone if you've been out of the game for a while, so make it easy on yourself. This week, challenge yourself to simply send a text to one person who cares about you to let them know how they can support you.

Because after all, you gorgeous pair of boobs, support is exactly what you need.