“How can life be so horrid to me?“
“Why can’t I just have some peace?“
“Nothing is going right…. everything is a mess!“
“Will I ever be happy?“
It’s astonishing how common such phrases have become these days. What’s appalling is how often they are meant. Frustration and mild depression have become common-place amongst today’s youth. Let’s not underestimate the pressures of being young blood in today’s world. Peer pressure, pressure to excel, find a high salaried job, the frustration of not finding ‘the one’, not being cool enough, unable to score well in exams- despite preparing for weeks before. These are definitely challenging times.
So gravely challenging in fact that Rita finds it hard to sleep at night. Sahil doesn’t want to live with his family anymore and finds it hard to eat anything.Youngsters are generally tensed about one thing or the other – be it relationships, social positions, jobs, lifestyles etc- there’s always something to worry up the wrinkles.
Take a break really. It doesn’t matter what age you are, being so worked up in life that normal bodily functions like sleep and hunger are affected- is simply not done! If you find yourself being unhappy everyday, then it’s time for some major lifestyle and attitude change.
Everyone. Really. Everyone goes through crap in life and it just can’t be weighed or compared. But people get affected by whatever they are dealing with differently. So, if you feel stressed about not being a topper, someone else maybe stressed about not being able to pass. There are people who went through hell because they were not placed in college or were having a very hard time at work.
Everyone has problems. The reason that the majority aren’t sitting depressed at home is because they deal with it somehow. Their attitude carries them forward and helps them cope.
The following are some tried and tested methods of getting out of a rut:
1. Work, work, work!
Being involved in any sort of work is a brilliant remedy to get out of the lows. Not only are you productive, you feel happy for having accomplished something. It distracts your mind from whatever is bothering you. Just make sure not to stop mid-way. No matter how hard it maybe to start something, you just decide and do it.
There is something therapeutic about cleaning. It is an external healing process of sorts. Take any corner of your room or house and start de-cluttering. Throw away things that you really won’t use. Things that you ‘may use’ also need to go in the bin. Focus on what is needed. Give away old things you no longer need. Let go of the clutter. It will somehow help you feel better and make you happy.
3. Talk to people.
Call up, text or meet a friend or many friends. Just talk to people randomly. Find out how they are doing in life. Forget about yourself and mingle. Get in touch with some family members. Just talk. Being social will make you feel less isolated. Just don’t talk about your problems. You are merely socialising and trying to have a good time.
4. Share your feelings and thoughts.
Take time out to communicate for yourself. Some people go into a shell due to the all the ‘problems’. It’s just not done. Suppressing things inside will only make it grow. Think of your thoughts as water in a tub. If you don’t clear the water every few days, it stagnates and starts breeding insects and dirt. So clear that water or get rid of it. Share about what is bothering you, talk it out. Let it out.
5. Get creative.
Expressing yourself creatively is another marvellous way to heal. Be it dancing, singing, listening to music, reading a great novel, watching a good movie, painting, cooking, decorating, playing an instrument, writing a poem; create. Get artistic and make something. It will build your confidence that you can do something well and simply have a nice time by yourself. It’s important to be productive.
6. Do something different.
Something you’ve never done before or not done in a long time. Call out some friends and meet. Dress up- feel confident about yourself. Try a new class or a new hobby. If you have have emotional baggage, open the bag and sort through it.
7. Find the change.
Sometimes, feeling low becomes a habit. Everything around seems to go against you because you’re used to seeing things that way. Change. If everything is going wrong for you; then the common denominator is you. What can you change about yourself? Your confidence, looks, attitude, way of expressing/talking. Maybe your resume or field of study or job? Something needs to change, if you want to get better and progress. Only you can help yourself.
8. Stop being so sorry for yourself.
I think self-pity is one of the worst forms of ego manifestation. It just makes you weaker and selfish, callous and un-caring towards others. People who are constantly in a state of self-pity push others away. It’s repulsive to others and self-destructive to you. Think beyond yourself. No one has a perfect life. No one always has it good. If the going gets bad, you deal with it rather than complain all the time.
9. Look at the positives.
Be grateful for what you have. Stop concentrating on what you don’t have or can’t have. Focus on what you have and what you want. Change your thought process to acceptance and reality. Keep things simple and count your blessings. There is always someone better and someone worse-off than you. At least you have someone to talk to. At least you have the resources to make a change. At least you are educated. At least your body functions well. So many things are taken for granted. Start being aware of how good life is despite the transitory challenges.
10. Just start.
It’s easy to feel lethargic and demotivated. Only you can convince yourself to do something/anything. If you want some changes in your life, then you make it happen. No one else can. No one else will. Why should they anyway?
11. Get real.
Sometimes the mind makes an issue appear bigger and twisted in ways it is not. So, really think and consider your situation and the people involved in it. Things aren’t usually as bad as we’d like to believe. Be realistic or get a reality check from someone you can trust to be honest. It maybe hard to digest, but sometimes a wake-up call is necessary to bring life back on the track of happy and happening.
12. Don’t give up on yourself.
You aren’t all that bad really. And you can deal with this. Just calm down a bit and take charge. You can do it, even if its hard initially- keep trying till you have the life you want. And trust people. Believe in goodness and happiness. Life will get better. What goes up, must come down. Vice-versa too.
How great it must be for Reena to be living her dream, studying in ‘the top college’ and doing what she so desperately wanted to. She told me, that life wasn’t that great, she wasn’t really happy and she didn’t have so many of the things that her friends did. For example; she felt bad that they had chauffeur driven cars when she had to use the college bus. That her friends went to the coolest places in town, had rich bfs, shopped as much as they wanted; while she wasn’t always allowed to go and hates her parents every now and then. Err.. whatever happened to being grateful for being admitted to the college, scoring well, having a decent life and simply enjoying it?
Apparently that’s not uncommon, people are so sorry about themselves that they are blinded to what is right in front of them and at times covet what is really not a big deal and maybe unimportant, at the cost of their peace of mind.
Kajal always felt that she was too thin for a girl her age and wasn’t really attractive at all. She wanted to be like her cousin Tamanna who [according to her] had the perfect ‘figure’. She felt sorry for herself to an extent that she started to feel disgusted by her body. One day, Tamanna just happened to mention that she felt she was fat and dark or maybe not. Kajal stared transfixed. The girl she looked upto was sorry for being the way she was?! How sad was that, and here she was sorry about herself… when there wasn’t anything wrong with her!
‘Someone always has it better than you.’ Really? What rubbish is that when the ‘someone’ is not even on the same level as you! None of us is the same. We are merely similar. So, how can there be be any justifiable comparison? Why even compare, when we know everyone is different. From the cellular molecules, thoughts, body, family, upbringing, attitudes etc etc. Heck, there are so many different people in our own immediate circle of people.
Fine, you want to compare? Do it. Be grateful when you see the differences. But stop feeling sorry for yourself. The only reason you are sorry for the state you are in or the person you are now, is because you aren’t accepting yourself. Something is not necessarily wrong with you. [ Exceptions being: mental/physical/psychological illnesses]. This habit of self-pity needs to stop and go right now.
Complaining about it, ranting about it, repeating how sorry/bad/sad you feel to different people in different ways, will not really help, unless you are willing to actually take their advice. Unless you are willing to stop being sorry about yourself. Nothing is wrong with you. What maybe wrong, is the attitude, the negative self-talk; the depressive habit that makes you feel sorry for yourself. And the fact that you’re doing nothing to change it!
How bad can it be really? Did you lose someone, a limb, an organ, some highly valuable possession, your self-respect, your heart? If it’s nothing along those lines, then for heaven’s sake, snap out of that drudgery.
Life’s not all that bad and negative. You still have so much potential and so much good in you and happening to you. The fact that you are using the internet is something to be grateful about. [You say no, then I hope you realise it when your internet stops working! 😐 ]
Someone else has a better life, better job, better friends [yeah I was weirded out when I heard it too], better materialistic possessions, whatever. IT DOES NOT MATTER. Their existence is not going to determine how you live, so don’t put yourself out there for misery to suck your happiness.
If you don’t like what’s happening to you or what you are making out of your life or how you feel about yourself, make changes. Start accepting life for what it is. Understand who you are and love yourself for the good things and start changing what you can. If you can’t change things on a physical level, then change your attitude towards accepting it.
I met a friend the other day, she had such a positive glow about her. She was doing what she loved and was extremely positive about everyone around her. This, despite the fact that people think she’s losing out on a great career. She just laughs it off and does what she loves. She’s not sorry. She has merely accepted herself and has made decisions to live life the way she wants.
What’s holding you back?