Mood rings were once touted (erroneously) as a way to find out through a quick visual inspection of an object whether the person wearing one was feeling angry, sad, calm, stressed, or any one of a number of other moods, depending on how inventive the manufacturer was at assigning moods to colors (which, by the way, the rings NEVER seemed able to achieve).
I've got my own, naturally occurring mood ring, of a sort. My fingernails. (But not in color – they don't turn green when I'm angry, [FINGERNAIL SMASH!!])
The length of my fingernails is directly related to how relaxed (not stressed) I am. I don't bite my nails, normally. But as I become more and more stressed, I start picking up nervous habits and nail-biting is one of the first that rears its ugly head. I'm not happy with the habit, but it only seems to pop up when I'm stressed, which means that trying to kick the habit only causes a feedback loop of more stress. Vicious cycles are ugly.
When I'm under a big project load with a deadline fast-approaching, my fingers are bitten to the quick. When I come back from a couple weeks of vacation (like I just did), my fingers are more apt to resemble talons and I have to be careful when changing the baby's diaper1.
Anyway, I only bring this up now because this morning I noticed that my nails have all been doing pretty well and are looking pretty good. The only problem is I noticed this just as I caught myself about to gnaw on a nail.
I give it a week before I'm back to ugly, chewed-off nails.
1Yes, I do cut my nails. No, they do not actually resemble talons. No, I never put my daughter in harm's way by placing sharp objects of any kind near her skin.
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