financial issues, divorce or suffering from a tragic event. Have you ever experienced everything in your life decaying or just crumbling around you? It can feel like a blade ripping your soul and emotions into painful shreds. We know life is full of crossroads, mountains, wildernesses and detours that can't be circumvented. When darkness overshadows the days, we are forced into a change we're not ready for. This is when a transition appears in the forecast. How can you keep it all together during this gloomy season? Consider the following ideas to keep yourself from falling off the edge.
Gratitude increases happiness and reduces depression. Research is proving gratitude could be medicine. A study by Department of Psychology, George Mason University, found gratitude helped the well-being in Vietnam war veterans. Participants found "Pleasant days over the assessment period, daily intrinsically motivating activity, and daily self-esteem over and above effects attributable to PTSD severity." Having gratitude was able to help many veterans and it can do the same for you. Make a list of just a few things to be grateful for. This can range from being able to afford a specialty coffee, having your sight to enjoy the beauty of nature or be thankful for good friends who support you.
Feed your mind with goodness. Read the Scriptures, listen to motivational speakers and anything you can get your hands on to keep you uplifted. Philippians 4 focuses on the God-given power to endure any circumstance. Philippians 4:12 notes, “I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want.” Paul experienced times of plenty and times of lack concerning his soul and his life. Despite the problems, he encouraged himself to get through the many dark times. We can have up to 12,000 to 60,000 thoughts per day and if most of them are toxic, we can be in a heap of trouble. The National Science Foundation found 80 percent of our thoughts are negative and 95 percent are exactly the same repetitive thoughts as the day before and about 80 percent are negative.We need optimistic expectations because, without, things could bury us further under hopelessness.
Note your strengths.
Make a list of all your strengths and keep it handy when you are feeling dispirited. Don't give away your potential to anything or anyone by allowing darkness to prevail. The past is not your future. Set up short-term goals and build on them. Find a new hobby, a dream or take a leap of faith by starting your own business. "Just because you haven’t found a successful way of doing something doesn’t mean you are a failure. These are completely separate thoughts," Forbes instructed. If you don't have the energy to start a new project, find an outlet to express yourself as this can help reset the mind. Only you can alter the path you take--be tough and explore ideas and choices to inspire you again.
Reach out to others.
Find people you can talk to about what is going on. If not, you will be hiding in the dark. This is a time you may want to isolate yourself, but reach out to people and be honest about your struggle. Talk with others who have gone through similar experiences. When you meet with others who share the same pain and concerns it helps heal wounds. We are not advocating for you to not take time for yourself, but the enemy loves it when we remain isolated. It prevents you from finding the strength that comes from others. Depression can also start to manifest as it "Makes you feel so isolated and self-orientated that you don’t have a thought about other people for long stretches of time. Just knowing that there are other people out there like you can really make you feel good," thedailymind.com shared.
The pain won't last forever.
There is a great truth in this world that applies to everything and that is nothing last forever. Keep in mind that it is a process and you will get through this. Although this doesn't seem likely now, you're already in the healing zone. When everything around us appears to be crashing, know weeping won't last forever. Additionally, know you always have a choice on what to focus on. For example, you can come out of this stronger and even help others who are feeling hopeless. Laugh, go have a date with Mother Nature, meet someone for a day of fun. Get out in the sun as this will help with depression. "Aim for at least 15 minutes of sunlight a day to boost your mood. If you live somewhere with little winter sunshine, try using a light therapy box," helpguide.org suggested.