There are times where it really does feel like a dark cloud is hovering over us. Perhaps, something really bad happened recently.
Maybe someone in your life passed away or you had your heart broken. We’ve all been there.
We have put together seven tools that can help you make it through the hard times and allow you to come out on the other side stronger, healthier, and more ready than ever to face the challenges of life.
Find Your Tribe
If your grew up around negativity, it’s going to seem totally normal to you, and happiness could actually feel a little uncomfortable. And we all have friends who see life through a glass-half-empty lens. While you are struggling, you need to limit your time around people who bring you down, and surround yourself with positive people who can help positivity become your new norm.
Don’t know where to start? Explore a new community. I am a part of several. If you enjoy yoga, I recommend Sojourn Healing Collective. If you enjoy writing, I recommend San Diego Writers Ink. If you enjoy health and wellness mixers, Micro Meetup might be your jam. There are a myriad of loving communities of people who same the same interests out there, so whether it’s health and wellness, business, or creative arts, there is a community for you in San Diego.
Make Yourself Vulnerable
When you’re feeling down, it’s natural to want to hide. Sometimes it’s easier to be alone. Afterall, no one wants to feel like a burden to others. But often what we really crave is intimacy. Let the right people in. Put your guard down. It will be worth it.
Often those people are already in your life. All it takes is a little bit of vulnerability. So be brave, take a chance on somebody.
Need a jump-start? If you are looking for a novel way to connect with others on an authentic level, try Circling with Jeffrey Platts. Circling is a relational practice during which attention and curiosity is given to one person in small group setting in an organic, non-analytical, fun form of guided meditation.
After a loss, sometimes it’s challenging to to open our eyes to all the things we have to be grateful for. Slow down ,and give yourself a little dedicated time to appreciate what you already have in life and bask in gratitude.
Keeping a gratitude journal is a great way to count your blessings every single day. You can find plenty of whimsical journals at your local gift shop, Pigment.
Love Yourself Well
Many of us are overly critical of ourselves when what we really need is to be gentler. We are patient, thoughtful, and kind to those we love, but often we neglect to show ourselves the same level of care.
Self love comes in many forms, the key to them all is making yourself a priority. It’s simple: Do healthy things that make you feel good. Take a modern dance class at Malashock, spend the afternoon at your local bookstore, like The Book Catapult, or lavish yourself with a day at White Rabbit Spa.
Take time out to recharge and recenter so you can feel your best. Read about other ways to practice self care.
Go Outside and Meditate
It is not an understatement for me to say that meditation has saved my life. I had a nervous breakdown in 2015 and this simple, but mind blowing technique has given me the power to relax my mind at any given point.
And it isn’t all about sitting cross-legged and chanting, read about five non-traditional ways to meditate.
Head over to The Self-Realization Fellowship Encinitas Temple. It’s absolutely breathtaking, and the calm energy and natural beauty has an incredible calming effect.
Sometimes we need some unbiased advice and insight from the outside looking in. A counselor can merely be someone who is going to listen and support you in releasing some negative patterns and help you think more clearly.
Our friends are not always equipped to be this person for us, so it can be helpful to find someone more objective to speak to, whether a religious mentor, a life coach, or a trained professional.
I found it helpful to get recommendations from someone I already knew and trusted, because chances are, if they resonate with someone from your circle, they’ll be more likely to resonate with you.
The stereotypical image of someone crying into a tub of Ben & Jerry’s isn’t a completely far-fetched Hollywood creation. When we are upset, there is an impulse to seek comfort in food, especially sugary, fatty foods that provide a temporary burst of pleasure. But this seemingly innocent reaction can be self-destructive, causing us to feel even worse after the initial burst of pleasure passes.
Fight the urge to self-sabotage with unhealthy foods, or alcohol, and instead focus on treating your body with love and respect. The simple act of shopping for, and preparing, high-quality, natural meals is one of the greatest gifts of self-care we can give ourselves.
What we eat can also become a major part of our lifestyle, with communities of like-minded eaters around the city, from Paleo fitness buffs to vegan gourmets. Find what feels good to you physically and mentally, and make mindful eating part one step on your path to recovery.
Nourishing your body represents a choice to build yourself up, rather than break yourself down, in the face of hardship, and that is an attitude and mindset that will serve you for the rest of your life.