#98 TRENDING IN Mental Health & Self Love 🔥

Going Through Tough Times? Read This.

Mental Health & Self Love

April 07, 2023

Joyful memories often hinder our perspective on the present. As social beings, we mistakenly believe that our pasts were more enjoyable than our current reality will be. Even if the road ahead has tribulations with every step, accepting these changes can help us overcome them. While the future may differ from our past, it will always provide opportunities to grow.

How can we find the strength to escape our “mental cages”? With a willingness to change, you can redefine your trouble as potential for glory. Here are nine helpful tips to get you through choppy waters.

1. Be Realistic, Not Pessimistic

If you are taking baby steps when adapting to tough situations, it’s difficult to avoid a negative outlook. However, seeing your circumstances realistically is not confronting them with fury. For example, if your bike rolls over a nail, you can examine its tires.

Is optimism out of reach? It’s okay! Be patient with yourself while embracing challenges. Do not expect to become “perfect." Set a goal to avoid negative mindsets, but do not force yourself beyond this. Optimism will come after you acknowledge your reality.

2. Change Your Space’s Appearance

Difficult times call for relaxing spaces. A cluttered room can be uninviting, especially after a rough evening. When you have free time, even when you don’t feel like it, try organizing your space. It has the potential to boost your mood and restart the momentum of your day.

Assign a theme to your room or office! Purchasing or designing decorations can help you find yourself again. So, it’s a subtle way to show what you value and admire. Improving and customizing your living conditions can only work for the better.

3. Take Care of Someone or Something

Helping others even when you are hurting demonstrates a strong character. For example, visiting your grandparent can brighten both of your moods! A community can always be mutually supportive, encouraging one another.

Therefore, when you feel unproductive, nurturing a living thing can transform your mood. Try taking care of houseplants or small pets. Both will need your effort. While they are a commitment, they can serve as light in dark situations.

4. Identify Your Schedule

Is there a specific time in your daily routine that you dread? If so, consider exactly why it's uncomfortable for you. Often, feelings of hopelessness derive from environments, people, and responsibilities. Then, start changing your schedule to diminish its impact on your mental health.

Save enough time to get at least eight hours of sleep, but if this isn’t possible, establish a morning routine. Be realistic when arranging your workload. Remember, your well-being should always come first.

5. Research Your Interests for Fun

Need a break from your daily classes, but still want to learn? There are always topics to study outside of school. Researching other subjects out of interest can prepare you for the future.

It uncovers your buried interests, which gives you the hopeful lift that you need. Career fields and sports are great starting points. Ask a friend what they know regarding your interests. See if you can explore them together!

For a weekend activity, sign up for affordable classes that take place online. They are pressure-free. Typically, you can quit at any time. Video platforms also work as a substitute.

6. Observe and Take Your Time

Go through your day a little slower. Take the time to soak in your surroundings because it helps you become more mindful. You’ll get through this, but while you are in a difficult phase, analyze each aspect of your life. Didn’t your neighbor seem happy this morning? That’s a start.

Tuning into your five senses can make life full. So, order your favorite meals and savor each bite. Feel the breeze in the afternoon! As Charles Simmons stated, “True greatness consists in being great in little things.”

Try not to suppress emotions because it can leave you conflicted. Instead, dig away at their causes and patterns. Likely, if you keep digging, you’ll hit gold. You will find small moments of bliss after shoveling away the dirt. Keep going!

7. Flip Through Your Old Yearbooks

At first, this sounds like a strange solution to finding peace. The old pages have collected dust on your lower bookshelf. Maybe one or two have been lost over the years.

Go treasure-hunting for them. Chances are, they remind you of your journey.

Revisit every classmate you met throughout secondary school. Allow your brain to recognize the school grounds you graduated from. Remember this: You’ve come very far in your personal and academic growth. Don’t forget why you continue to strive!

8. Wear New Clothes

When you begin to feel downtrodden, change into one of your favorite outfits. Avoid wearing pajamas throughout the day. After all, switching up your wardrobe can give you a sense of novelty.

Small trinkets or pieces of jewelry can serve as tokens to appreciate. Before you step back into the classroom, it will always be with you. They make for wonderful gifts as well! Dress how you wish to feel, but it is valid to be downhearted.

9. Start Forgiving Yourself and Others

Sometimes people hold grudges in challenging periods of their lives. Others can weigh down on you with expectations and faults. For your own sake, let go of unnecessary drama.

See forgiveness as acknowledgment of what occurred, not as a free pass to disrespect you. Set boundaries and time for yourself. If mistakes burden you with guilt, bring yourself to apologize. Do not overestimate the impact of past wrongdoing. Allow yourself to feel anger but also permit it to pass. Processing emotions instead of suppressing them is the key to healing.

Tough times will not last forever. Although our struggles cause us to lose hope, it is crucial to move forward. Finding ways to better ourselves will sharpen our perseverance. Reconsidering your daily habits and school life can encourage you to adapt over time. Remember, improvement is always a process. Continue to stay motivated!

Kelly Halliburton
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Kelly Halliburton is a member of the Creative Writing Conservatory at Orange County School of the Arts in Santa Ana, California. She enjoys writing poetry and volunteering. Through exploring themes of student life and personal growth, she aspires to project meaningful ideas in the community.