For many months, I’ve dreaded waking up. Every single morning. There seemed nothing for me to look forward to except endless, tedious stuff to do. So I’ll hit the snooze buttons for a long time, unable to get up, tired and lethargic before my day even begins. At night, I couldn’t bear to go to bed, reluctant to let go of the quietness I finally got. Some nights, I cry those tears of frustration and despair. On other days, I was constantly at war with my bouts of anxiety. It was a vicious cycle that refused to stop.
Some Things to Do When Life Sucks
Here’re a few suggestions when I find myself stuck in a rut for too long. I hope you can find some help in them.
Fall back on your community.
The most solid form of support to have, when it feels like your life is crumbling, will come from the people that surround you. It’s important to have a tribe of your own, even if a very small one. Good friends and family will provide you with the purest of moral support, or at least lend a ear for you to rant.
I don’t always suggest turning to social media to seek support from your fans and followers. In fact, I find myself feeling worse each time I turn to social media for some virtual support. Not that I’m discrediting all support in that sense, but nothing can replace truly actual connections in the form of in-person conversations, text messages, a phone call, or even Skype time with your loved ones.
Investigate your unhappiness.
Journal the shit out of it. I’m not telling you to write a diary, I’m suggesting a method of quick scribbling, to speak to the depths of your heart. Just scribble without putting too much thought into what you’re writing. thinking. This form of journalling is cleansing activity, helping you to declutter the junk inside your head. In turn, you get closer to understanding why you’re feeling whatever you’re feeling.
The thing is, not everyone is willing to face this darkness. I just hope you know that the biggest growth of space can only come from those dark corners.
Awareness is the second step to solving anything; the first step being: acknowledging a problem does exist.
Reduce making decisions.
The idea is to reduce your mental fatigue.
One thing that really made the difference for me was: acknowledging that mental energy is a resource that gets depleted.
Do you feel tired having to brainstorm about what to eat for your next meal? Or when your partner asks where do you feel like going for the weekend? Or what plans should you make for the next vacation? Or what to do for your kid’s birthday party? What time should you sleep? What should you read today? Who should you text? And it goes on and on. These are just some simple examples of exhausting mental energy.
You use mental energy each time you don’t give your mind a chance to pause. This includes constant thinking, or over-thinking, and definitely the endless scrolling of social media. This is where Mindfulness needs to come in. However, if you’re not familiar with Mindfulness techniques yet, there’s another simple method to try: simply reduce making decisions.
How? Well, structure your routines for optimization. For example: Fixing Mondays as white outfit day, Tuesdays as floral, so you don’t need to decide what to wear every morning. Or best, implement choice minimalism strictly and wear the same stuff every day. Do this for as many aspects of your life as you can, including dietary options and lifestyle habits. See if you feel any difference.
The lesser pointless stuff you need to choose/decide on, the more mental energy you get to conserve.
Break out of your routine.
Not sure about you but if I find myself in too standard of a routine for too long, I go crazyyyy. My peace of mind turns haywire and I’ll be looking for an exit before I do some harm. It’s exactly why I need to travel to places like Bangkok by myself for a while.
You don’t need to take drastic measures yet. Simply incorporating some variety into your routine is a good start.
Cry it out.
Release those pent-up emotions. Cry during your shower, or into your pillow if you don’t always get privacy. After crying, you’ll feel better.
By the way, don’t forget to limit the amount of time you allow yourself to be down.
This is a tough one to suggest. But if not, it might grow into a habit and will be harder to get out of by then.
Go back to putting yourself first.
Conside self-love & self-care. It’s not selfish, it’s necessary.
Change your perspective.
Turn the things that make you feel upset, into something positive. Tired out by kids? Think of how you’ll feel without their company. Find your living space too congested by your family members? Imagine the loud quietness to live alone. Annoyed by your colleague’s constant antics demanding attention? If not for that distraction, your boss will always be breathing down your neck, promise. Turn things around by remembering this:
Shit could have been worse.
It’s very difficult to practise gratitude when life sucks to the core, but you have to make yourself do it. Practising gratitude can help to distract you from your current woes and worries. When you practise gratitude, your attention goes beyond who you are, instead, transforming into energy for you to give thanks for other people and to count blessings. This dose of positive energy grows and grows.
Lastly, acknowledge that sometimes life will suck.
It’s ok! Don’t beat yourself up over it. The good news also is, storms don’t last forever.
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