What do you do when life really sucks? Don’t worry, there are things that will help you through, no matter how bad it seems!
There will come a time in life when it sucks. Sometimes, it will really, really suck. You end up caught in a series of events that feel like Pandora’s Box has just opened up—like bad luck or tragedy has engulfed you.
What can you do at such times to make life better again? Below are some tips.
There are things you can fix and things you can’t. If you were swindled of a million dollars, lost someone you love or your house burnt down, chances are you wouldn’t get it back. While mourning loss is important, getting lost in the sorrow is not healthy. You need to focus on what you can do with life right now.
A happy life consists of love: being who you love, being with those you love, doing what you love and living where you love. Sometimes, you will lose something you love, but if you keep the door open, new love will enter.
The important thing is accepting life for what it is: filled with ups and downs, joys and sorrows. If you don’t accept that, you will become bitter and blame life for being hard. It is hard sometimes to accept it and move on. Open your door to new things to love. Choose to focus on the beauty.
If you are having a bad day and need a change of thoughts, watch a comedy or another happy movie. It’s best if you go out to be among people when doing it, but even if at home, watch a nice movie, or read a great book. It will help you to focus on something nice. Stories also tend to heal us as we process our own things when we read/watch them.
It might sound trivial to watch a great movie if you’ve recently lost a child or gone through a divorce, but you need to start shifting your focus to enable healing. There’s a time to cry and a time to take a break from the crying.
Finding your way back to love is a lot easier if you have support around you. No matter how much you promise yourself not to think about the bad things, there will be times when you do think about them.
That’s when you need people there to distract you (or rather, to bring you back to love)—people who can give you experiences you love and rekindle your flame when it burns low.
If you have a great circle of friends, start seeing them regularly. Maybe do a weekly or bi-weekly meet up on top of hanging out with people separately.
I just read The Sum of Our Days by Isabel Allende where she speaks of her group of “witches”—basically, a group of women who meet to pray for each other and meditate together; a support group that’s there to halve the sorrows and double the joys; people you can call when you are too sick to cook or need a hug; people you can call to celebrate your new job or fiancé.
If you don’t have a group like this, start going to events where you might meet women you can add to such a group. In bigger cities, you will find meet-up groups, but there are also classes you can do, workshops to attend, gyms, etc.
Get out there. It helps. And, in case of an emergency, simply go to your nearest coffee shop for an hour. Even that will help distract you if your thoughts go on a negative spiral.
You will heal. You really will. But, to do so, you have to reconnect with your body and the environment around you.
What will help you to connect with your body and mind? Meditation, going to a spa (saunas, hot tubs, hammams, massages, etc. but also just having a good scrub in the shower followed by body lotion can do the trick!), chanting, drumming, dancing, yoga, tai chi…all those things can help you to connect with your body and mind.
It’s also important that you really look after your body and mind in other ways. You need to eat well, exercise, go to sleep at regular hours and get enough sunshine to function well. All of that will help you to feel better, as it will release chemicals that make you feel happy.
To connect with nature, you can simply go for walks in the woods, on the beach, in the countryside or in the park. Even just sitting in your garden can help you to connect with nature—and there is something magical about nature that will infuse your body with energy. After all, we are connected to nature and if that connection starts to falter, we feel out of sync.
Looking after yourself and your environment includes wearing nice clothes, having a nice haircut and cleaning up your home so that you feel relaxed and welcome every time you come home. By looking after the outside, the inside starts to heal, too.
This sounds terrible, I know, but I went to a drama school where I had a Russian principal who taught us that, in Russia, they had discovered that cold baths help to sort of “reset” your brain.
This is because your body goes into survival mode if you jump into a cold bath for about 30 seconds (head under water). You will no longer think about what’s dragging you down, or get lost in any melancholic thoughts in general. Rather, you will feel reborn.
If you find yourself in a terrible mood, try a cold bath. Afterwards, you can pamper yourself with hot tea or chocolate.
How would you like your life to look? No, you might not get your ex back, but you will meet someone even better or great in a completely different way. The movie P.S. I Love You is a great example of this—of mourning one love and finally meeting a new. So, start thinking about what would constitute a happy life for you.
Once you have an idea of what you want and what your goals are, go after them. Things might not change overnight—you need patience—but you can get things going overnight.
As soon as you start pouring energy into doing things you love and working towards your goals, you will feel better.
Purpose makes us come alive—just look at the millions of people who have turned something sorrowful into giving them meaning. Perhaps they lost a friend and set up a support group to help others going through the same.
Whatever cause you want to fight for, be it creating a better job for yourself or others, it will give you meaning—and meaning brings happiness.
We all face hard times in life. Don’t let it make you bitter. Accept it as part of life and know that, just as the tides turn, better things will come.
Don’t let yourself get caught up in the bad; rather focus on the good. Create a group of friends to support you and whom you can support. Find meaning in your life by going after what it is you want and helping others do the same.
Writer. Social Entrepreneur. Foster mommy (twins). Change maker. Foodie. Health freak. Nature lover. Creative nutcase. Blogger (Confessions of a Dizzy Blonde). A friend of mine once described me by saying “One minute she’s like the Dalai Lama, the next a dizzy blonde” and maybe that does sum me up…
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