I guess if you’ve lived even a little bit of life, you’re bound to have a not so great year every once in a while.
You know those times when it seems like none of your prayers are getting answered, or when your life just seems very stagnant and filled with challenges, obstacles, and uncertainty? Or some how you’ve ended up back at square one though you feel you’ve done everything right but to no avail. Yeah, those times.
Well. As I’m reflecting over my 2018, I’m thinking it’s funny how life gives you perspective. Like, what I used to call a sucky year mainly centered around my dating woes and inevitable eff-boy problems. However, I realized this was the first year where I didn’t say one of the following statements:
- “Don’t fu-&%-ng call my phone anymore!” (followed by some number blocking, then unblocking just to see if he’ll reach out for Christmas, to blocking right after they do text, because I’m hella emotional and confused); or
- “This isn’t working for me. *You don’t* *I can’t* *We just* —- end it how you will”; and of course
- “I’m not happy, maybe we’re just better off as friends.” (knowing damn well, we can’t be friends anymore. Were we ever?)
Nope. None of those. Oh how I miss my crappy guy problems 😦
If you have time you can read all about why this wasn’t a great year for me in my previous post: [Hiatus from Hell?] but in case you don’t, here’s the skinny: Last year around this time, I was in a very low place – and truthfully – remained there until about this past June. I mean Nothing. Was. Clicking. And I was about ready to dig up that little mustard seed and flush it!!
But right now, even as I write this post. I am totally in a difference space!
So what changed?!
A lot, and not much at the same time.
I’m still on my hunt, still in physical therapy for my neck, still got mild TMJ, and now I have a $650 bill from a MRI I got back in September, which basically revealed I have arthritis, degenerating disk disease, and that I’m basically a 34 year old senior citizen at the same damn time.
However, there was one fine moment a few weeks ago where I literally found myself saying out loud, “You know, it could be worse,” and that’s when I knew I had grown.
So I wanted to share five things with you that got me through this year in case you are or ever hit a little rough patch of your own. And here we go!
1. Get Still
I find it funny that a lot of people don’t take out time to just think, reflect and pay attention to how they’re feeling. It’s almost as if they don’t want to deal with their thoughts or what’s going on inside. And I get it. Don’t dwell on the negative, but in my experience, if you want a pretty garden, you have to perform maintenance. During this past year, after what seemed like one pitfall or road block after another, I had to pause and say, OK. This moment in my life right now, kinda sucks, but it must be for a reason. It has to be. I recommend deepening your spiritual relationship with the Source and just ask, what am I supposed to be learning in this season? For me, I constantly found myself asking, Lord, what are you trying to teach me? Where are you taking me? And then I just waited for the answers. Trust me, you WILL get them. Get still as often as possible until this time in your life makes sense. Make it have purpose. You might even get step-by-step directions!
2. Question, Don’t Blame
I’ll be honest. I often place blame during moments when things aren’t going my way. I particularly find that I blame those closest to me who gave me advice or a suggestion that didn’t work out. Like, “yeah, well, IT DIDN’T WORK!” Even God. It’s almost as though my life isn’t my own. It’s mine when things are good, but the minute something goes awry – NOPE, you did this to me! Ummmmmmm, so that’s not how it works. This life, this season, this moment, it’s your life. What you do, what you don’t do, every decision, every opportunity presented, it’s up to you to decide which way YOU want to go. So yes, question what may have went wrong or how you got here, but don’t blame anyone, not even yourself (and I know that’s hard sometimes.)
3. Remember Life Ebbs and Flows
Not-so-great times in your life are simply that, just a moment in time. Your life is moving, more than likely forward. You just have to understand this, and don’t resist what’s trying to change around you. More than likely you will be forced out of your comfort zone or you may be required to end some friendships or make some lifestyle changes during this time but know, nothing is by mistake. Let It Go. You will be fine. I promise. For me, I realized that I was tooooo comfortable, and God was like, nah. Remember that blog you created? Those ideas you have? Stop wasting time. Let’s get uncomfortable for a sec.
4. Apply Perspective
A bad season is not a bad life. Period. Don’t write off your life and start getting reckless thinking this moment won’t pass. Don’t. My mom always tells me your words have power. And so I decided to put it to the test, and it’s true! I just started to find the bright spots in my life despite the clouds. I said things like, “Well, it could be worse,” “At least I have a job,” “Overall I’m healthy,” “At least I have close friends and family I can talk to.” I looked at every situation that was weighing on me mentally and emotionally, and found a way to look on the bright side. I studied the definition of faith. And then practiced it until it became a belief. God is going to work it out. He’s going to turn my situation around. I know it. I’ll do my part and let Him do His. All will be well. No ifs, ands, or buts.
5. Action Is Required
As a self-proclaimed emotional eater, I’ll be the first one to reach for the half pint of ice cream on a bad day; or late night snack when I can’t sleep watching Oprah on demand thinking of my woes, however, after getting really introspective this year, I realized that I’m hurting myself and accepting being stagnant instead of doing what I need to do to ensure this rainy season has a positive outcome. Think of it as positioning. If you’ve completed #s 1 & 2 on this list, then you know why you may be at this low point right now. I highly recommend journaling some ways to get out of this funk. Maybe you need to update your resume so you can apply to that job you’ve been eyeing, or get serious about pursuing a goal you’ve been procrastinating on. One thing I know is that if you don’t take advantage and put in some work during this time, you will not move. “Ain’t nobody got time for that” We gots things to do. Amirite?
Oh, and aside from applying these five tips to my own life at the present moment, I find that coffee just helps [tea works too]. My Ear Nose and Throat (ENT) doctor tried to tell me to stop with the coffee, and I looked at him like the devil is a liar. I shant.
And OH-M-G I forgot one more tip!
Remember to laugh. And I know. I get it. Sometimes you just don’t feel like it so don’t force it. But trust me, a little humor can take you a long way.