What do we do when we’re struggling? Are there things that you’ve found that are helpful?
There are times during all of our lives where the struggle becomes real. Life happens and we find ourselves in the midst of difficult situations, some not of our own choices. “Life gets lifey,” as one of my friends likes to say. I have found several things that seem to help me when life gets rough.
- Try not to isolate yourself from friends and family. I know there, at least for me, is a tendency to want to try to work through things alone. “If only I think on this situation long and hard enough, I’ll be able to find a solution.” While personal reflection is important, I think it’s also productive to be amongst others and while we don’t have to share any or some of the details of what we’re going through, it sometimes does help to have input from others.
- Listening to music is helpful. I have a go-to list of artists that I love to listen to during the normal course of the day. If I am struggling, listening to perhaps a bit more of the favorites seems to take my mind far enough away to take a break from it all.
- Photography is one of my favorite hobbies. One of the reasons I like it so much is because it greatlly assists me in staying in the present moment. It’s just me, my camera, and whatever it is that I’m taking a picture of. Taking pictures out in nature seems to be especially beneficial. Once the pictures are done, there’s the editing process and of course sharing them with others on social media. Hobbies are most normally done for fun and nothing better than to have fun, even in the midst of struggling.
- Journaling is something that has been immensely helpful to me over the past twenty or so years. I started nearly twenty years ago on the advice of my therapist and have written nearly every day since. It’s also developed a love for writing along the way. Sometimes just putting all those thoughts on paper is the best medicine.
- Depending on what spiritual practices you possess, I suggest turning to those as well. Some would say this needs to the first thing you might do during a struggle. In my case, I pray to the God of my understanding for guidance, wisdom, and strength to face whatever life has brought my way.
- Stay with whatever life routines you have established. Don’t let the difficulties keep you from doing what you’d normally do. I wake up each morning and drink my coffee and post my daily inspritation entries on social media. I also have several meditation books that I read from and this always seems to give a good start to the day.
I don’t know that I have all the answers to those who have struggles in life. And certainly, some struggles are more difficult than others. But I’m hoping some or all of the above will be of help next time you find yourself in one of those places.