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*Updated January 28 2021*
If life isn’t easy for you right now, I feel for you. I know all too well what it’s like to wake up to the same challenging reality every day.
Having lived through a ‘my life sucks’ period, feeling the same sense of frustration and pointlessness over and over and over, I know the challenge of keeping spirits high.
But I also know what happens if you don’t make a clear and determined decision not to live like that for the rest of your life.
Almost every successful and truly happy person I’ve met, or read about, had a turning point.
Some of us made it as teenagers, some not until much later in life and far too many never make it at all. Don’t be a late bloomer, get on that ride as soon as you’re able.
In this post you’ll learn 5 things and more to help you overcome emotional hardships and the best way to help you get past tough times, when life really sucks.
Let’s get started.
1. When problems show up practice reframing
As Albert Einstein said, we cannot solve our problems with the same thinking we used when we created them.
Remember that things are what we say they are. Sometimes you need to reinterpret events in a more positive way.
Change your inner speech, change your language. If you stop declaring your experiences to be problems and define them as situations instead, you’ll instantly feel differently about them.
And the way we feel about things is a self-fulfilling prophecy. We feel something to be a challenge, we declare to ourselves that it’s a challenge and our creative mind assumes that’s our request.
Everything is in our world because somewhere, at some point, we said yes to it.
But the choice is yours as to how you view the things that show up. Problems create upset and stress, situations, on the other hand, are simply events to be dealt with.
Go ahead, begin to reframe and you’ll start to feel a whole lot better.
An easy way to start this is to write, write, write.
2. When life sucks try expressive writing
In his book Expressive Writing: Words That Heal by James Pennebaker says:
Writing is a potentially effective method to deal with traumas or other emotional upheavals. Emotional writing, or what is often described in research studies as Expressive Writing can positively affect people’s sleep habits, work efficiency and connections to others. Indeed when we put traumatic experiences into works, we tend to be less concerned with emotional events that have been weighing us down.
It’s true enough that not every problem will be traumatic, but problems tend to bring with them emotional upheaval. And whilst talking to others can be a good way to deal with situations that create a life that sucks, it’s risky.
It’s not going to help if others are judgey.
But simply writing down what’s troubling you can work wonders.
According to research our mind needs to have a story to work with. And simply having a problem run around and around in our heads isn’t the kind of story that does any good.
We need to give our mind a chance to rest. And we need a chance to allow our subconscious mind to get its work done. To work out solutions that our busy mind can never discover, because…it’s too busy focusing on the problem that makes our life suck.
For example in a study fifty two percent of those who wrote about their stress and trauma after losing their job were more likely to find new jobs than the non-writing control group.
Why would this be so?
Expressive writing helps your mind/brain focus. It puts things into an organized structure. It helps your mind make sense of the stuff that’s happening.
So take some time at the end of each day and just write down, or record what’s bothering you. Doesn’t matter about your writing or even if you type it. Doesn’t matter about whether you can spell or your grammar is correct. Does not matter!
The only thing that matters is that you write it down.
Then chuck it away if you want, or delete it or keep it. Doesn’t matter. Just write about what’s troubling you today.
Oh yes. Don’t hold anything back.
3. Be your own best friend if your life sucks
Be your own best friend and stop being your worst critic.
Happy people approve of themselves and give themselves permission to be who they want to be. Stop looking for someone else to tell you you’re okay.
It sends you on a never ending search for validation. You don’t need anyone to tell you what you’re worth.
You’re a miracle.
Never say anything about you that you don’t want to come true.
And stop paying more attention to the opinion of others than of yourself.
Once you decide to believe in yourself, to accept yourself, to honour and respect yourself you’ll discover the world will follow suit. Decide to feel terrific about who you are.
4. Replace that life sucks feeling with new thinking
We all think we’re thinking, but truthfully, most of the time it’s just mental activity; don’t confuse a busy mind with a thinking one.
Undirected mental activity won’t bring about change. Undirected thoughts won’t alter the course of your life or remake your destiny. And they definitely won’t bring about better things when you’re experiencing the ‘life sucks’ mode.
And let’s face it, if we’re honest with ourselves most of our undirected thinking is negative thinking.
Make a conscious effort.- You won’t automatically direct your thoughts towards the things you want and the life you truly desire. You have to stir yourself, rise up and decide you’re going to keep moving forward.
A thinking mind is a magnet for what you desire. Try thinking from the heart it’s a great way to move beyond the challenges of the day.
Here’s a few words from Dr. Joe Dispenza on breaking the habits of negative thinking.
5. Practice handling new ideas
New ideas, new activity can turn a downward trend up. The downside can be that growing yourself means growing apart from those who would like you to stay just the way you are. Be prepared.
If you change, if you begin to take new actions, or speak in a new way not everyone will be supportive. Stick with those who are true friends. The one’s who support you no matter what. The ones who always and only imagine you having the best life possible.
The greatest difficulty isn’t having a new idea – it’s getting away from the old ones. Life is too short to struggle with those who want you to remain a prisoner of your past. Be willing to accept others for who they are, but keep moving forward towards who you’re becoming.
Bonus Practice – Optimism
Optimism is one quality more associated with success and happiness than any other. Magic lives in optimism.
What’s the ratio of your positive words to your negative ones? You’re creating an optimistic or pessimistic outlook by the language you use. Plus the things you think and say give you some clues as to your future success and happiness. (read Learned Optimism)
It’s a real challenge for some people to pay attention to their thoughts, especially in the beginning. If this is the case for you, try this:
Invest in this great happiness activity when life sucks.
All you need is a place to write and think and imagine. Take twenty or thirty minutes to imagine your life next year, in five years, or in ten. Everything is just as you want it to be, it all turned out fabulously. You’re living the life of your dreams.
Write it down. What does it look like, how do you feel, what are you doing? What amazing things have you accomplished? Don’t worry about how you did it, just that you have.
Get the best out of this happiness activity – be persistent. Consistent practice helps you build your optimist muscle. Write daily for a month. You can read more about it here.
It might not come easily at first, but keep going. Be patient, be positive…eventually things come together.
In the comments below, I’d love to hear from you. How do you manage that ‘life sucks’ period?
Step forward and let’s hear from you. YOUR share could trigger a breakthrough or inspiration that someone else really needs.
Thanks in advance for sharing this article with others.
Encourage one another.
With much love,