[Updated with new thoughts/content: Originally published November 15, 2015]
[Disclaimer: I don’t claim to be an expert. I am only here to give advice and offer guidance to the best of my knowledge.]
Nothing is ever permanent.
Now, let’s get one thing straight. Obviously the universe is never against us. But sometimes it sure feels like it, doesn’t it? Maybe we’re having an off day and everything seems to be going wrong, or even worse, maybe we’re just having a really off year and there seems to be no getting back on our feet any time soon. We feel hopeless, life feels hopeless. And no…we’re not blaming it on Mercury Retrograde! (Well, okay, maybe sometimes)
I don’t know about most people, but for me, life has always been one extremely complicated journey. Let me rephrase that, one extremely complicated and frustrating journey. Life has been crazy hectic and filled with lots of tears, (whose hasn’t, right?!) but it has also been beautiful and eye opening at the same time. I have met a lot of interesting souls along the way that have helped me on my path through self discovery, and I won’t forget a single one of them.
Life has been pretty hectic the past several years. I figured it was about time I start writing about what has helped me deal with my feelings of inadequacy and personal frustration with the universe, for those also having a tough time. Most of you probably already know these things or do all this already, but as long as this can serve as a reminder on how to keep your chin up, then I am glad to help.
So life just really isn’t going your way these days and has got you feeling down. Now what?
Maybe life seems to be going so badly, that it feels like you’re slowly heading towards rock bottom. Never fear! That is why I am here. I hate to use phrases like, “rock bottom,” but when life gets tough for us, it feels as if we are slowly sinking into quick sand trying to crawl our way out, all to no avail. Either way, you’re most likely at a bad place right now and it’s no fun. Here are some little reminders to help you keep moving forward and stay focused on the positive aspects of life.
✩ Remember, it’s not the end of the world
No matter how low you are feeling, every day it’s important to remember that tomorrow is a new day. I know, I know, everyone always says this, but that’s because it’s so true! It’s up to you to decide how you’re going to improve your day and what goals you wish to set for yourself, which brings me to my next piece of advice.
✩ Goal set, goal set, goal set (say that 3 times super fast!)
I cannot stress this enough. Wake up every day with at least one goal in mind. If you’re a super Virgo and need to make cute organized lists and write them down, go for it! If you’re a super scatter-brained Taurus like me, however, and buy cute notebooks and hardly use them, well, keep your goal(s), in your memory bank instead! Having a goal, even if you can’t accomplish it in one day, will help you stay focused and continue to remind you that sooner or later your negative life situations will start improving one little step at a time.
✩ Get out of your comfort zone!
It’s easy for many of us to fall into a routine. And especially so if we’re struggling with life and dealing with difficult times. Often we have no energy or we’re not in the mood to try new things. This is why it can be so imperative to break the cycle every once in a while and dive into something fresh. Mentally and physically it is great for us, so if we’re already at a low point in our life but not changing our life up, it just means that we’re okay with remaining stagnant. No! That is not the answer here. Evolve! Grow! Move forward.
Earlier this year I auditioned for two Secret Deodorant commercials because I got scouted one day while minding my own business, eating and working on homework. I’ve never been into acting—I’ve always been too shy—so I was quite stunned. This was a once in a lifetime opportunity, I told myself. I was really busy at the time, and wasn’t sure if I’d even be able to make it out to auditions if I got a call back. I decided to just roll with it and did a quick video interview with the lady that scouted me, then a day or two later I got called back to come in for actual auditions in front of the director. I couldn’t believe it! Almost all my life I have always held back and never really wanted to break free and commit to change. I have this problem of fearing taking chances. It’s true. I’ll admit it. I told myself it was now or never. I went to the auditions and it was quite the experience. It was also surprisingly a lot of fun. I did not get the parts of course, but until this day I am so happy I took a chance and broke out of my comfort zone. I don’t regret a thing!
✩ Get involved in new projects or new hobbies
For most people, getting out of their comfort zones usually means getting involved in new projects and hobbies. Perfect! Immersing yourself in something new is great to help revive your spirits. It’s always nice to try new things in life, period. For some, it may be a little more scarier than others, but it can also be a lot of fun. Even if you fail, at least you went for it and put yourself out there. Guess what? That’s still accomplishing something. Volunteer somewhere, rearrange your furniture, or if you feel you need more exercise in your life, start cycling or take up hiking. Go on a photo walk! Those are also nice events to meet new people and test out your creativity/photography skills, and you get a little exercise at the same time. I usually find out about those events on platforms like Instagram. Remember, getting involved in something doesn’t have to be extreme.
✩ Make new friends
When you’re feeling stuck, or like your life is spiraling out of control, it’s extremely overwhelming. Don’t lock yourself up in your room or house and mope around all day! (I admit I have been guilty of this many times! Ugh!) It’s alright to have sad days, but don’t forget to spend time with friends. We are human beings and unless you’re a sociopath, we all crave the warmth of friendship and some sort of affection at one point or another. If you feel like you need a new perspective on life, meeting new people can be great for that. Having long, unexpected conversations with people we just met can be oddly fulfilling at times.
There are a lot of cynical people out there that joke that they “hate other humans,” and although there are a lot of people out there that are twisted and cruel, and we have every right to dislike them, there are still plenty of good people out there as well. If your life is currently not all sunshine and peaches, then meeting new and inspiring people can really make a big impact in your life. If I’m not meeting people at social events, I usually find pretty cool people on social networking sites like once again, Instagram. Can’t you guys tell I obviously love Instagram?! I especially love that there are so many amazing women on that site that show a lot of love and support for one another. It’s very refreshing to meet new, positive individuals. I have made a lot of new friendships thanks to Instagram, believe it or not. I have even gotten to meet some of my Instagram friends in real life and it is always awesome. Always be wary of weirdos on the Internet though!
✩ Collaborate with friends
When you’re not making new friends, it’s great to connect with our current friendships and even work on projects together. Sometimes we may feel stuck in life because it seems like we’re alone and maybe we just need a little push and an extra helping hand. I know I could not have made it this far if it wasn’t with the help of my friends. Lifting each other up is what life is really all about. I love taking bts photos of friends working on current artistic projects, and even modeling for a friend’s clothing line! We are all here on this Earth. The more we continue to embrace one another as equals, the more in tune and happier we can be with our lives.
✩ Sing, dance, play music
Allow yourself a mental breather and unwind with some singing. Get down with some Karaoke with your friends. Love to dance? Dance your heart out instead. It may sound silly, but we all deserve a time to just let loose and gather our sanity back. Like most people, I love making playlists on Spotify. Sometimes I like to just embarrass myself and sing my heart out on Snapchat too. It’s great to act silly around others, or do it alone at home when no one is watching! If you play an instrument, then I’m sure you all know that’s also a great way to unwind and reconnect with something good in your life for the time being. I love playing the piano here and there to help clear my mind.
I really want to learn how to play Light Of The Seven on my piano from the Game of Thrones Season 6 finale. It’s just SO BEAUTIFUL.
✩ Follow a travel blogger
For those days when you’re at your extreme lows, and need a little dose of inspiration, checking in on the lives of some of your favorite travel bloggers is actually a lot more fun than you think. Yes, it’s true, there are times when “looking in,” on other people’s lives can make you feel as if you’re not really living your life to the fullest, or trick you into thinking that perhaps they have something better than you, but this is not always the case. Remember, your life is just as meaningful and can also be filled with fun! Constantly obsessing over another’s daily life is of course never healthy, but admiring people’s travel vlogs or photos is great if you need another taste of a fresh perspective and need to be reminded of the beauty of the world through the dark times you are experiencing. It’s great to see the rest of the world through another’s eyes when we can’t quite experience it for ourselves yet, or as often as we’d like.
I’ve never been too big on taking the time to sit down and watch Youtube videos, so right now I really love to follow my favorite photographers and favorite travel and fashion bloggers on platforms like Snapchat, and yes, you guessed it, Instagram. Right now these are some of my top 3 favorites at the moment, in no particular order.
- Lily Rose (Photographer traveling all over the world and various parts of Europe) IG: @lily_rose || Snapchat: lily_roz || Website: mynameislilyrose.com
- Eleonora Carisi (Italian fashion insider) IG: @eleonoracarisi || Snapchat: eleonoracarisi || Website: joujouvilleroy.com
- Natalie Suarez (Model traveling some parts of the world and various states across the U.S. IG: @natalieoffduty || Snapchat: natalieoffduty || Website: natalieoffduty.com
- Nanni Gabrielle (Photographer & traveler in Paris, France. IG: @nannigabrielle|| Snapchat: nannigabrielle|| Website: www.nanni-gabrielle.tumblr.com
- EdwardKb (UK Photographer living in Hong Kong)|| Snapchat: unsteadyeddie|| IG: edwardkb|| Website: edwardkb.com (this guys work is awesome!)
✩ Pay a visit to author, speaker, and teacher, Gala Darling’s, website
New Zealand native now living in New York, Gala Darling, is one of the main reasons why I started my official blogging journey, and wanted to start putting a little more sunshine not only into my life, but in others. What I’m writing right now doesn’t even compare to the stuff she writes and has to say about living a more positive life. I still consider myself a newb in the blogging world, but she has been around for years! If you need relationship advice, advice on learning to love yourself more, or motivation to start getting yourself out there and doing something more productive with your time, that’s all there on her website! During my low points, I usually end up turning to her blog for advice and for daily inspiration. Amazing women like her have really helped keep me grounded and always remind me that no matter how much it feels like life sucks, it’s up to ourselves to change that and keep on fighting.
✩ Cherish each and every day as often as possible
Like the title of this blog post implies, although it probably feels like the universe is acting against you, just remember that you are not the center of the universe. Time doesn’t stop for anybody. We must all keep moving forward. No matter how difficult it may be at times, try to be grateful for what you do have. Cherish you friends, cherish your family. Cherish your adorable pets!
✩ Purchase a succulent
Owning a plant and taking care of it is actually quite therapeutic. Succulents are really easy to take care of, and look great decorated around the home! I was actually fortunate enough to be gifted my very first succulent last year, and it has definitely grown beautifully. Each day I look at it on my windowsill and it brings my heart this tiny warm feeling every time. It’s kind of funny, but hey! Like I said, it’s the little things for me. I want to start keeping more around the house now too.
✩ Pick up a new motivational book
Someone I have been following for quite some time now on Instagram from the UK just published her very first book last year!! I am so happy for her! And I think you guys should totally buy it and read it! What’s even more amazing is that all profits go to the bone and soft tissue cancer charity for Sarcoma UK. Her book is titled, Braver Than Britain, Occasionally. Although I’ve been really busy with life and still haven’t personally read the book yet, based on her witty writing skills from reading her blog, I know it’s already going to be filled with lots of laughs and writing that is sure to create lots of fun, vivid imagery. It is based off her experiences of concurring Britain’s top 10 fears. This sounds like the perfect motivation to get out there and get shit done, and definitely break out of our comfort zones. I really need to get my hands on this book!
✩ Redecorate your home or room!
If you’re not really in the mood to move furniture around, simply rearranging or adding new elements to your home is always tons of fun. I LOVE to recycle glass bottles and fill them with flowers (real or fake), or also add candle sticks to old wine bottles. It’s awesome!! I think my home decorating taste is Quirky, romantic vintage vibes.
On a side note, keeping a photo album on hand is always really nice. I love to look back on my past Instax photos and feel reminded of all the fun times I’ve had.
Life doesn’t have to always feel so hard. The universe is not against us. Each day will get better. We just have to make it so and stay strong. It’s almost selfish to blame all that’s negative in our life on the universes fault. Half the time it is, believe it or not, our own. *gasp* Not something all of us want to hear, but it’s always better to be honest with ourselves. Obviously these little reminders on how to stay sane aren’t going to make us entirely forget our problems, but have hope and keep on living.
What are some ways you guys cope with difficult times or find ways to get back on track with life? I’d love to know in the comments below!
Love you all!