When life gets hard, it’s easy to feel overwhelmed and debilitated by everything around us. Sometimes, we may even find ourselves paralyzed and unable to focus and move because every day, feels like we couldn’t breathe.
This is exactly what I’ve felt a year ago. My mental health was struggling so badly and life just seems to keep throwing me one curveball after another.
Every day, I felt like I was drowning. Like I was constantly grasping for air, pushing myself to keep standing.
I kept telling myself that things will get better and to just keep at it, but often those words just won’t provide us any comfort, especially when to us the pain and the problems feel like they are just never-ending.
If you’re currently feeling this way. Please know that you are not alone. We all go through seasons in life that will test every ounce of strength in us.
But what you must always remember is that when life gets hard, you are strong enough to get through it.
You have within you such invaluable strength that will help you cope and get through tough times.
In this post, I will share the steps I took that have helped me get through hard times in life. These steps helped me overcome the feeling of overwhelm and keep going even when life gets hard.
I’m hoping that these will help you too!
At the end of this post, I have also gathered some of my favorite inspiring quotes to lift your spirits and boost your motivation during difficult times.
15 Powerful Things You Can Do When Life Gets Hard
1. Take A Deep Breath
I know right now, everything may seem too much and your life may feel so overwhelming. That’s why it’s important to slow down and just take a deep breath.
Take a deep breath in. Breathe out.
Breathe in hope, strength, and courage. Breathe out bad thoughts and worries.
I know life is hard right now and you may feel like everything that you are doing to make your life better is not working but it is.
Every little step counts. Breathe. You can do this.
2. Remember That Your Today Is Not Going To Be Your Forever
When life gets hard, it’s easy to feel hopeless and to start believing that our lives will only ever go from bad to worse.
I know this feeling all too well. I know how easy it is to trap ourselves into thinking that things will never get better for us, especially when life seems to hit us with one problem after another day after day.
I know that you may feel like your problems are just endless and the pain is just never-ending but like everything else in life, things are constantly changing.
Things will eventually fall into place, sooner than you think. The important thing is to keep going. Just keep putting one foot in front of the other.
Better days are coming. While everything may be hard right now, your tomorrows are still full of so much hope and endless possibilities for a better and happier life.
3. Live One Day At A Time
How often do you find yourself constantly living in the past or always worrying about the future and the constant what-ifs of life?
When we are going through difficult times, it’s so easy to be swept away by the worries and uncertainties of the future.
What if this doesn’t work out? What if things continue to fall apart? What if things will never get better?
These are just some of the what-ifs that constantly ruled my life when I was at rock bottom. I’ve allowed myself to constantly dwell on all the uncertainties and what-ifs of the future without realizing that by doing this, I was just making things harder for me.
You see one of the things I learned when I was at the lowest point of my life is, constantly ruminating on the past or worrying about the future is not going to make things better.
Often, it’s just going to make you feel more defeated and overwhelmed.
I’ve learned that one of the best things that you can really do is to just take it one day at a time.
Focus on the things that are happening in your life right now and focus all your energy on the things that you can do today to improve your life and slowly pick yourself back up.
By taking each day as it comes, I felt less overwhelmed and I actually started to feel more hopeful and motivated to keep going and turn my life around.
4. Be Kinder To Yourself
Being kind to ourselves is often easily forgotten, especially when life gets hard and when we are going through hard times.
We tend to easily beat ourselves up even for the smallest mistake.
We criticize ourselves and we constantly put ourselves down without realizing that by doing this we are not only crushing our self-confidence, but we are also negatively affecting our mental health.
I am guilty of this too. Sometimes we just find it so much easier to be kind to others yet we struggle so badly to offer the same kindness to ourselves thinking that we don’t deserve it.
But we do. You do. You deserve love, compassion, and happiness.
Being our own critic can sometimes be motivating but when we constantly do this to only put ourselves down and make ourselves feel bad, that’s when the problem starts.
Give yourself some grace and acknowledge your strength and courage in facing every problem that comes your way. You are doing a great job.
It’s time to stop being your own worst enemy and start being your number-one fan. Cheer yourself every step of the way.
Celebrate your wins, big and small and always remember that you are enough and worthy just as you are now.
5. Don’t Be Afraid To Be Vulnerable
Sometimes when there’s so much going on around us, so many problems and worries, we start to think that it’s so much easier to just put everything that we are currently feeling on the back burner.
The heartaches, the disappointments, the exhaustion, and all of our negative feelings. We start to believe that it’s much better to pretend to be okay and just keep all those emotions bottled up.
I am definitely no stranger to this feeling. This was always my go-to move every time I struggle in life, and it worked for a while.
But not long after, all those emotions caught up with me and I broke down.
There’s nothing wrong with giving yourself some time to feel, vent and cry. Being vulnerable does not make you weak in any way.
I actually find it to be the exact opposite. Vulnerability takes courage and strength.
Allowing ourselves to be vulnerable not only lessens the burden that we have been carrying for so long but also opens us up to healing and to moving forward.
6. Don’t Be Afraid To Ask For Help
While I was navigating the lowest point of my life, I was struggling with so many problems every day.
To me, it felt like waking up to a new day meant waking up to a whole new problem and worry.
But regardless of how badly I was struggling, I was so hesitant to ask for help thinking that doing that will only burden other people.
I kept everything that I was feeling to myself believing that no one wanted to know how I was really feeling. I felt so alone.
And because of that experience, I’ve learned that regardless of what you are thinking, the people that truly love you actually really want to help you and listen to you.
To them, you are never a burden. Remember that asking for help doesn’t mean that you lost or that you are weak. Sometimes in life, there are just things that are too heavy for us to carry alone and we just need someone to be in our corner to tell us that everything will be okay.
Don’t be afraid to reach out to other people. Sometimes it’s not always easy letting other people in, try starting with someone who you trust the most.
7. Mistakes Are Proof That You Are Trying
When life gets hard, it can be frustrating if all our efforts to turn our life around only lead to mistakes and failures.
Especially when we try so hard to address a problem and stop things from falling even further apart and then we end up making a single mistake that just basically ruins all our efforts.
Growing up, I was also afraid of mistakes and failures. I believed that mistakes and failures meant that I was and will never be good enough.
When we are struggling in life, making a mistake can be discouraging. It can make us feel defeated and lose hope.
But after struggling with my fear of failure and mistakes for years, I’ve learned that mistakes are not always a bad thing. Mistakes can sometimes mean movement.
Mistakes a proof that you are trying. That you are actually doing something to improve your life and achieve your dreams, instead of just standing still.
Mistakes can actually mean growth and improvement. So, if you have been struggling with a mistake or a failure that you have experienced lately, always remember that these don’t define you and stop you from doing the things needed to improve your life.
What matters is what you learn from the mistake, how you handle it, and what you do after. Keep going.
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8. Be Grateful
Yes yes, I know what you’re thinking, when you are navigating the darkest season of your life, finding something to be grateful for is not always the easiest thing.
Sometimes, we don’t even think it’s possible. I felt the exact same thing. When I was facing new problems every day, being grateful felt impossible.
I allowed myself to wallow in the negativity and let me tell you, doing this did not make things better nor did it make me feel better. It just made everything worse.
It made me a bitter and difficult person. It made me feel more hopeless and overwhelmed.
Because the thing is, if we allow ourselves to only focus on the bad things, we are reframing our minds to only cling to negativity and reject any positive things that are actually happening in our lives.
There is always something to be grateful for, regardless of how little they may be. There will be days that we might just have to spend more time looking for it, but there is always something.
Don’t let the negativity keep you from appreciating the small beauty and blessings of life.
9. Make A Plan And Create A List
Going through hard times is overwhelming and can often be paralyzing, especially when you are struggling with so many problems.
The best thing that you can do to fight this feeling is to sit down and plan. Revisit your priorities and your goals. List down all the problems that need to be addressed.
Categorize your problems. After, write down everything that you need to do to address them. Break big tasks into smaller ones, that way it will be much easier for you to handle them and it will prevent you from feeling overwhelmed.
10. Take Action (Even Little Steps)
This here is important and we all know why. A plan is nothing without action. We can’t expect things to be easier and for our lives to turn around if we are not doing anything to make it happen.
I know sometimes when we are struggling, doing something can be challenging. Some days can feel so overwhelming that we are often paralyzed and unable to do anything because of it.
I definitely know where you are coming from. I lived this and sometimes I still do. There are still days when I feel so defeated and discouraged to even get up and do something.
If you’re feeling this way please know that there is nothing wrong with taking a break and allowing yourself a chance to breathe and reset.
Just remind yourself that you don’t need to do everything at once. You don’t have to solve all your problems in a day.
You don’t have to finish all your to-do list right away. Some days, all we can ever do is take just one step. Regardless of how small it is.
Just take one step. Do one small thing. And maybe who knows, after accomplishing that small thing you will have enough energy to do another. If not, then that’s also perfectly fine.
The important thing is to keep trying. Remember that success is not always about taking huge leaps, it can also be about the small steps that you choose to take every single day.
11. Celebrate Your Wins
When life gets hard, celebrating your wins and acknowledging all your efforts is definitely a must.
I found that doing this not only improves your self-confidence but also gives you motivation and hope.
When was the last time you acknowledge your wins? Now is certainly the time.
Also, on days when we feel defeated, exhausted, and drained, we can always look back to those days when we celebrated our wins to give us the boost of determination that we need to keep going.
12. Make Time For Self Care
I know that when we have so many things to do and so many problems to face, making time for self care is probably the last thing on our minds.
Well to be completely honest, often we don’t even think about it. We assume that it’s just a waste of time, especially when we have so much going on in our lives.
But there is actually no better time to practice self-care than when you are going through hard times.
It is during these times that we need it the most. Self care is not selfish. It certainly is not a waste of time. I truly believe that we all need to practice self care and take care of our needs for us to keep going.
Self-care is not only good for our mental health but it can also do wonders for our productivity and motivation. Sometimes we just need to take a break and breathe for us to come back stronger.
Here’s a great article from Good Housekeeping that’ll give you an extensive list of self care ideas and activities.
13. Have Faith
When I was at rock bottom, there were a lot of days when I thought I didn’t have enough strength to keep going.
There were so many nights when I cried myself to sleep. I thought that I would never be able to turn my life around. I felt so hopeless and defeated.
I can’t tell you how many times I thought about giving up and just accepting the fact that my life will always be hard.
But one of the greatest reasons why I continued to push through and persevere was my faith. My faith kept me going. It allowed me to push through even on the most difficult days.
When life gets hard, cling on to your faith.
Whether you believe in God or anyone else, or it could simply be just having faith in the Universe or things eventually falling into place, trusting your faith can be one of your greatest sources of strength.
I personally have God to thank for helping me get through my darkest days.
14. Start Loving Yourself
There’s no better time to love yourself than now. I know how cliché the statement `love yourself’ can be.
But let’s be honest, even if we hear this statement a million times, it’s still so much easier said than done.
But one thing I’ve learned from my journey towards self acceptance and self love is, this is not something that you can merely master overnight or even in a week.
This is something that you have to choose every single day.
It is a journey and sometimes there will be downs but you have to continually choose to love yourself even in those low moments.
To help you know where to start on this journey, take this 30 Day Self Love Challenge.
15. Remember That You Are So Much Stronger Than You Think
Regardless of what you are going through, always remember that you are so much stronger than you give yourself credit for.
Always remember that within you lies an invaluable strength and courage that will help you push through the darkest and toughest seasons of your life. Don’t doubt yourself and what you can do.
You have what it takes to turn your life around. You have what it takes to change your situation, to better your life, and to build the life that you want.
Just believe in yourself. You got this.
Don’t forget to read the inspirational quotes below. You can use them as your mantra on days when life gets hard.
You can print these quotes or list them in your journal and read them every time you feel hopeless, defeated, and overwhelmed.
I know that life is hard right now and I know that there are days when we feel like whatever we do or how hard we try we can’t just get through it.
But we can. You can get through it. You will get through this. Whatever it is that you are going through is only temporary, the sun will shine again and you will certainly come out of this stronger, braver, and wiser.
When Life Gets Hard Quotes
See your hard times through the spectacles of your experiences. They, too, shall pass away.
— Ogwo David Emenike
Life is at its best when everything has fallen out of place, and you decide that you’re going to fight to get them right.
— Thisuri Wanniarachchi
Many of life’s failures are people who did not realize how close they were to success when they gave up.
— Thomas Edison
The greatest glory in living lies not in never falling, but in rising every time we fail.
— Nelson Mandela
Once you choose hope, anything’s possible.
— Christopher Reeve
If you are feeling low or trampled, unappreciated or forgotten, and you are reading this, realize it is an illusion. The hope is real, you are valued, and what lies ahead is brilliance.
— Tom Althouse
Let perseverance be your engine and hope your fuel.
— H. Jackson Brown, Jr.
Life’s challenges are not supposed to paralyze you; they’re supposed to help you discover who you are.
— Bernice Johnson Reagon
And hard times are good in their own way, too. Because the only way you can achieve true happiness is if you experience true sadness as well.
— Gabrielle Williams
Challenges are what make life interesting and overcoming them is what makes life meaningful.
— Joshua J. Marine
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