Life can be truly challenging sometimes. There is no doubt about that. It has ways to bring us down, so we don’t know what hit us.
It is something that we simply need to accept as the normal part of life. However, what should you do if you simply can’t wrap your mind around all of the things that happened to you lately?
If you are tired of struggling through life, here are some tips that can help you hold your head above water!
1) Write about the things that bother you
If you simply cannot bear thinking about the people who hurt you or you seem to have so much noise in your head, take a piece of paper and start writing. You don’t need to worry about grammar, punctuation, or style. This is just for you.
Even though it seems too simple to help, it will give you a chance to see your emotions on paper and share the part of the pain you are feeling.
The fact that you managed to vocalize and sort your thoughts will be an enormous help instead of just jumping from one thought to another.
Once you are done, you can save it for later so you can come back to it anytime you like, or you can tear it and throw it away. Either way is fine; choose the one that gives you more comfort.
2) Assess your lifestyle
When we are in the middle of the storm it can be hard to think about everyday things, such as meals or sleeping schedules.
However, such a seemingly simple thing can help you turn your life around. Start slowly and make one nutritious meal that you will enjoy. Let that be your starting point.
Think about the way you have been eating – have you been skipping meals? If you have, make it a priority to break this bad habit. We all need food. It is a simple fact that no one can escape from, so why would you?
Make a list of food you like and have it close to you if you get hungry. Forget about the snacks and sweets for a while. It can be a portion of comfort food from time to time, but consuming such food on a daily basis can harm you in the long run.
Have you been sleeping enough lately? If you are struggling with insomnia or you are having nightmares, it may be a way our body is telling you to slow down.
Give yourself the chance to unwind before going to sleep. Read a book instead of endless scrolling on social media. Have a bubble bath, if you prefer to relax in the water. Even half an hour a week can do wonders for your spirit.
Identify the “time stealers”.
Are those long phone calls from your acquaintances or late nights at work? Are you spending too much time online?
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If the answer is yes, maybe you should start thinking about better time management. You can start by writing down the things you did during the day that took a lot of your time. After a few days, you will realize that there are things that can be done better.
3) Accept all the feelings you have
When we are struggling, we tend to get irritated easily.
Snapping at the people from your surroundings will only make your life worse. Once you start facing challenges, usually the first emotion that comes up to the surface is rage. You may be surprised when it starts erupting, but don’t be afraid.
Even though society has put upon as the shame about it, it is still necessary to honor every emotion that comes, safely of course. Don’t direct it towards people, but use it for exercising for example. It is the only way to grow. Embrace it and you will soon realize that sadness is coming right after.
If you are not a fan of crying, try to think about it as a great outlet for all the negative energy building up inside you. It has to come out somewhere, right?
Well, it is better to let it go through the tears than physical symptoms. You should know that our bodies are magnificent at showing what they need. It is just up to us to read the signs.
You will notice that once you start crying, your mind will get clearer so you can see your life a little bit more objectively. Mourn for all your loved ones that are not there anymore or even the dreams you’ve had that are no longer possible.
It is a path towards your authentic personality and a better quality of your life.
4) Focus on the things you have
People usually tend to direct the energy towards the things they don’t have which only makes things worse and increases frustration. During difficult times it is necessary to be grateful for all the things you do have. Have you heard the saying “I was sad about the shoes I didn’t have until I saw a man without legs”?
Even though this is a little extreme, it is a wake-up call for all of us when we forget the things that we are blessed with – our eyes, arms, legs, and our health in general!
The most comforting thing that you can realize is that as long as you can function normally you can earn again, you can do more for your family and you can simply enjoy life.
Some things cannot be changed or bought, but it is the reality. Go through life with what you have and play the best game you can with the cards you’ve been dealt. It is all that we can do.
5) Set your priorities straight
Be completely honest with yourself and think more about the things or people you prioritize in your life. Who is “taking the wheel” of your life? Maybe you are giving other people too much power over your life.
Those people can be your parents, partner, friends, or even kids. Giving too much to the people we love can actually be counterproductive. Think about your personal boundaries.
Have you been giving more than you are realistically able? That may be your time, money, efforts. Stop for a moment and understand the way people are treating you. Do you give them enough time to help you? There should be a balance between giving and taking.
Setting boundaries is not easy and it will not happen overnight, but once you start seeing the benefits, you will not wish to go back.
The moment you realize that you have the complete right to control your life, it will be easier for you to remove the clutter from it – in any shape or form! It may be tough at first, but when you start feeling the energy coming your way, you will be happy you started this journey.
Keep the people that make you feel good and support you. Cut off all the people that drain your energy and are too egocentric to notice anyone else. Appreciate your time and be careful who you give it to.
Give away all the things that are not serving you and make some room for new things that will bring you joy.
6) Keep in mind that it won’t last forever
Every struggle has to have a beginning and an end. If it seems to you that the brighter days will never come, they certainly will.
As Thomas Fuller said, “The night is darkest just before the dawn”.
Just when you think that it cannot get any worse and that you cannot take it anymore, it will get better. Do what you can and keep going. Replaying things in your head will just make things worse.
Give yourself the chance to take in all the changes that happen around you and make sure you do your best to remain in control. Preserve your energy and try not to get too upset about every single thing thrown at you.
7) You will come out stronger
All the things in life shape us into the people we are. Life cannot be beautiful all the time, it is not natural. There need to be yin and yang, good and bad. The sooner you understand it, the better.
Look at it as a challenge. Test your skills and abilities to turn things around. Even though this may be very difficult sometimes, you will notice that when this tough period stays behind you, you won’t be upset with most of the things that used to upset you.
Looking at the bright side of life can be annoying when you are holding on to your dear life, but it is a tested recipe for centuries by millions of people around the world, so give it a try.
8) Talk to a friend
Sometimes sharing the burden can be very healing, especially if you have a friend who has been with you through thick and thin. We are masters of disguise sometimes, so if you don’t say anything, your friend may not be able to see that you need help.
Don’t expect anyone to read your mind, if you cannot process something, reach out to the person you trust. When you are drowning in problems, knowing that you have someone to listen to you and care for you can be truly a life savior.
The friendships go through trials this way since you will know if you have a true friend by your side ready to have your back and help you out. Who knows, maybe your friend is going through the same and didn’t want to burden you?
In case you don’t get the support you need, don’t take it personally. It can just mean that your friend doesn’t know how to help you.
9) Consider talking to a professional
We live in the 21st century, so it was never easier to get help from a psychologist. These are trained professionals who know how to approach every problem under the sun.
The stigma around depression, anxiety, and other conditions related to mental health is significantly reduced, so you are still struggling, this may be a way to go.
It can give you another perspective and save you some time, so you can speed up your healing process. Make sure you choose the person who suits you and understands you well, so you can share some of your difficulties and find solutions to your problems easier.
10) Let it pass
Sometimes doing nothing is the best thing you can do. If all of your efforts didn’t end the struggle, just let it all pass the way it should. It is the path all of us should go sometimes. Make peace with it and you will save a ton of your energy that you can direct to something else.
Show yourself compassion that you would give to a friend. Care for your well-being and give yourself plenty of time to process everything. The sun has to rise at one point, just wait for the magic to come back to your life again.
These are some of the best tips I got personally during the tough times in my life, so I can confirm that they work. Once you start caring for yourself more, you may come up with more things that can bring you comfort and soothe you.
The most important thing is not to lose hope that things will get better. It is just the circle of life. Sometimes you are at the top, other times you will find yourself at the bottom. These positions are not finite, they will surely change so don’t get desperate if things get rough.
It is just one phase in your life preparing you for the better one that is yet to come, so clear your path and learn from your lessons.
Once the trial is done, you will realize why you’ve had to go through it!