It’s going to happen. Like it or not things are going to go wrong in your life. It could be a minor thing like spilling coffee on your pants. It could be a major thing like illness or an accident. Or it could be a bunch of minor things that create a major thing. And some days, some months, some years it seems like absolutely everything is going wrong in your life and nothing is going right.
We all have moments when we look to the sky and quietly whisper “Seriously? This too?”. Moments when you think you can’t handle one more thing and you’ll actually question your ability to withstand the pressure of one more weight added your shoulders. Moments when you think “if one more thing goes wrong, I’m pretty sure, no I’m certain, my head will explode”.
I’m happy to report that no, in fact, your head won’t explode and there are numerous strategies you can use to help you slow down, reflect and get through times when you feel like everything is going wrong.
- Prioritize your tasks.
Usually, when you feel like everything is going wrong it’s a very busy time in your life. You’ll find yourself with a task list of a bajillion (it’s a word) things to do and when we have so much to do, we move quickly. Unfortunately, it’s usually when we’re moving too quickly that more mistakes happen and more things go wrong. So first, slow down and breathe. Take time to reflect on all the things/tasks/demands you need to get done and prioritize that list.If it’s a bad day, prioritize your day. A bad month? Look at what needs to get done over the next month and set goals you want to achieve within the next 30 days. Bad year? Same deal. List everything that’s gone wrong and figure out how to help yourself make them go right. Prioritize that list and focus on the top three tasks. Really, really be aware of what’s most important to you to “fix” and solve the major issues going on in your life.
- Reach out. We’re all so connected now through social media, the internet and all of our devices. But, when’s the last time you’ve actually connected with your friends and family members? When’s the last time you connected with that long-time friend you never have 5 minutes to chat with? When things go wrong, it’s time to get off your devices and reach out for human contact. We live in a busy, busy world but don’t forget that there is still a lot of love out there. I bet there is someone in your life who would love to help you get back on your feet.Don’t be shy about asking for help. It could be a simple request for an afternoon playdate so you can get some errands done in peace. Or, it could be a larger favor like a weekend alone to reflect, prioritize and figure some things out on your own.Whatever you need, reach out and ask for it. Your friends and family want you to feel good. They want you to feel loved, cherished and taken care of. But, if you’re constantly putting on a brave face and saying “it’s okay, I’m okay, I’m good”, they’re going to believe you (until things really go wrong and they need to come pick you up off the floor…trust me on this one). So, reach out. And hey…there’s really nothing as therapeutic as a really great Girls’ Night surrounded by the incredible women in your life. Laughter truly is the best medicine.
- Practice gratitude. When things are going sideways on you, the last thing you’re going to want to do is be grateful. However, this is probably the best time for you to stop, reflect on your life and remember what you have to be grateful for. You can start with the “little” things like hot coffee, a beating heart, food in the fridge, your children. As your start listing off the “little” things they’ll become less little.Sure, your kid was a nutjob and made you late. But, you have a child who loves you like crazy. Be grateful for that. Your job is demanding and your boss is a tyrant? You have a paycheck coming in and a way to help support your family. Everyone is sick in your household…for the third time in a week? Be thankful for medicine and your strong arms to hold the ones you love as they get well. Roof is leaking, food’s gone bad, car broke down and your dog ran away (insert Blake Shelton song)? You have a home, a car and your loyal dog will come back because he loves you and you have his favorite bed and stuffie.
Gratitude. It’s a powerful, powerful tool. Trust me. I challenge you to write down three things that you’re grateful for every morning and every night before you go to bed. And just watch. Watch the power of gratitude affect your life and welcome the positivity back into your heart.
- Workout. Well, if you know me at all, you knew this would be on the list. The power of moving your body, of exercise, is incredible. So when things go wrong, go workout. Practice yoga, find a group fitness class you love, go throw some weights around, sweat yourself silly on your treadmill. Whatever you love to do to get active, go do it.During those moments of “Really universe, really?!” it’s time to get your sweat on.
Let your body take care of you. Go. Sweat. The endorphins and other hormones released, the mental focus and the overall well-being that exercise can bring into your life will help you reframe your thoughts and come up with a plan to tackle what needs to be tackled. The power of moving your body is incredible. Let your body help fuel and inspire your mind. There is nothing more therapeutic than a really good sweat sesh. So go lace up your sneakers, tie your hair up in that crazy pineapple you’ve been sporting and get moving. Your body, your mind and your spirit will thank you.
Things are going to wrong in your life. All the time. But, how you cope and react to those events is completely up to you. You get to decide what you want to put your energy into (for the most part). So, take control and try the above 4 strategies when you get overwhelmed with it all. Sometimes it’ll work like a hot damn and other times you’ll comment below about how ridiculous these strategies are. And, that’s okay! Some day it’ll work. Some days it won’t. But…don’t you dare give up. Don’t you dare lessen who you are and what you’re doing because you’re feeling beat up.
Remember, you’re amazing and you have amazing things to do in this world. Trust yourself, be grateful for all you have and get to work! You have an incredible life to lead. So go live it! Not every day is going to be a bad day. In fact, you’re going to have some pretty amazing days ahead of you. So focus there. Focus on the good.