The last year has been full of incredibly highs and impossible lows.
I left a toxic work environment that had tanked my self esteem and left me feeling hopeless.
My mental health hasn’t been in the greatest place and I’ve been struggling to keep focused on my goals.
I’ve been uninspired and apathetic.
Most days, I haven’t been able to find the motivation to do even the most basic things.
It’s been very difficult to stay positive.
Phases like this are common when you’re going through a spiritual journey. You strive to let go of things that aren’t serving your highest good. You feel discontent with the status quo and start to question everything. Sometimes you can even feel disconnected from the things you typically love.
This struggle can be incredibly difficult and, when combined with any type of mental illness or emotional stress, it can feel downright impossible to escape.
However, things are starting to look up and I finally feel like I’m getting my groove back. I’ve found a job I’m happy in, am discovering new hobbies, and am working to find makes me feel truly fulfilled in life.
Today, I wanted to share some tips with you that have helped me to stay positive. These things have all helped to change my mindset for the better and keep pushing on.
If you are experiencing mental health issues I highly encourage you to seek out a mental health professional. There’s no shame in getting help and depression, anxiety, etc. are illnesses just like any other. You wouldn’t think twice about going to the doctor for a broken arm, so you shouldn’t hesitate to seek help for mental illness.
That being said, I truly believe these tips are healthy practices you can incorporate into your life to help keep yourself in a positive mindset!
Focus on the Good in Your Life
This first tip is probably the most powerful of them all. When you’re feeling down, reminding yourself of the good things you have in your life can make a world of difference in changing your mindset.
I’ve covered the importance of gratitude and some tips for practicing it on my blog before and everything in that post still rings true. Finding the good in life and being grateful for things, big or small, will totally shift your outlook on life.
While I do admittedly struggle with this, I have noticed that on days I consciously choose to practice gratitude I feel happier and motivated to better myself and my situation.
Something as simple as writing down three things you’re thankful for every morning or thinking one positive thought for every negative one you have can do wonders for your overall outlook on life.
Make Time for the Things You Love
When you’re struggling, even the things that you normally love can be difficult to do. You might feel as though you don’t have the time for them, feel guilty for “indulging”, or just feel generally unmotivated to do anything.
However, I promise you that practicing a little self care will make a world of difference in your overall well being.
Take five minutes, a few hours, or even a whole afternoon to do something just for you. That time is designated for your happiness and should be treated as sacred. What you do during this time is personal to everyone, but some suggestions are:
- Make a cup of tea or hot cocoa and mindfully enjoy the experience of drinking it
- Run yourself a bath (and maybe even do the self love bath ritual I shared here)
- Take a walk and ground yourself in nature
- Play your favorite video game or read your favorite book
- Spend time with friends and loved ones
These things are seemingly small, but taking just a little bit of time every day can help to recharge your energy.
I know what you’re thinking:
“Rachel, I’m so overwhelmed by my current situation. The last thing I want to do is think about the future and stress out over goals”
I’ve been there and completely understand. However, sometimes having a game plan for the future can help you to refocus and get back on track.
Take some time to reflect upon your current situation:
What do you like or dislike about it? What changes would you like to see in your life? How do you accomplish these changes?
Once you’ve done that, take the time to create some achievable goals that will help you accomplish these milestones. It helps to create goals for different time frames. For example, you could create a three month, six month, and twelve month goal.
These don’t have to be major, life-changing goals either! While there’s nothing wrong with setting a goal to change career paths or move to a new city, a goal to learn embroidery or read six new books in the coming year is just as valid and beneficial. Being able to focus on these goals can give you something to look forward to and give your life some direction.
If creating long term goals feels overwhelming to you, it’s totally okay to do something on a smaller scale. I personally like to create small goal/task lists for each day that have a few things that I want to accomplish that day.
Regardless of what approach you take to this, simply giving yourself some form of guidance will help to raise your spirits and keep you from feeling lost and overwhelmed.
While this is certainly not an exhaustive list, these three things have helped me stay positive in life. If you have any other suggestions, please leave them in the comments below!