Are you struggling with feelings of hopelessness? Do you feel as if you’re trapped and backed up against a wall? Are you battling depression, and feel you’re spiralling down into a pit of emptiness and hopelessness? If you feel that way, there are things that you can do to help pull you back from the whirlpool of despair:
1. Questions your feelings of hopelessness: If you simply accept your thoughts of hopelessness then they’ll end up becoming a self-fulfilling prophecy. So, start by accepting your assumptions could be wrong … then use that to experiment with acting differently – as if things might work out, or things might actually go well. For example, go out with your friends even if you’re feeling down and are tempted to just stay at home on your own. It may feel like a battle – but it’s worth a try as you may find you feel better for challenging your thinking.
2. Try something new: Although you might feel you’ve tried everything you can (counselling, therapy, different kinds of medication) it’s likely that there’s something you could still give a try. For example, there are different types of therapy – so try a different one. Have you combined medication with counselling? Have you changed your thought patterns for a period of a month? Have you joined a self help group to increase your support?
3. Identify the things that aren’t totally hopeless: Don’t get stuck by fixating on the things that you can’t change. Start to focus instead on things that you can change. For example, if you’re ex has dumped you and is now with someone else, think about the other things you can now do with your time, and the steps you can take to meet someone completely new. Don’t bang your head against a wall – look for a door that’s swinging open.
4. Realize that no one thing is necessary to be happy: If you find yourself thinking “I can’t live without him” or “if I can’t have x then there’s no point going on”. That clearly not the case as there once was a time in life when you managed pretty well without that person or thing. You can live without them now – and work on having a great life!
5. Learn to appreciate the present: The past has gone and the future isn’t here. So focus on your attention on the present, and this moment. Feel the air touching your body; smell the fragrance in the garden; notice the pattern of your breathing; hear the sounds in the room. Really live this moment … don’t try and rush ahead … and you may also find that the hopelessness subsides.