WHAT TO DO WHEN YOU FEEL DISCOURAGED
Last week, I had one of “those” days. A really bad day. I was in a rut. I was running out of ideas. I was overwhelmed. I was anxious. I didn’t feel like doing anything ( if we are being totally real ) and I’m naturally a motivated person.
Having a bad day and feeling discouraged are definitely similar.
Feeling discouraged hits you like a truck. I personally experience this feeling in the pit of my stomach and it leaves me feeling sad and uninspired, you know?
…But, if we put things in perspective ( which I’m all about ), you have to realize that feeling discouraged is temporary and in my humble opinion, a choice.
During that moment last week where I felt totally discouraged, I recorded a podcast.
NOW WAIT! You might be thinking, “well how discouraged could I have possibly felt to record ANOTHER podcast?”
It took a lot.
This is what that day looked like for me:
I woke up and felt blah
Skipped my morning routine ( never a good idea )
Laid in bed doing nothing feeling bad for myself
It was just one of those days, ok?
If you listen to the podcast, you can hear it in my voice that I had been crying. You can hear how I was truly feeling and you can experience how I encouraged myself to power through.
When I’m feeling discouraged, the FIRST thing that I do is ALLOW myself to feel this way. It’s important to understand that this feeling is normal. It’s temporary and it happens.
HERE’S THE TWIST
( can’t forget about this )
I don’t just acknowledge it and allow myself to feel this way.
I give myself a set period of time.
30 minutes, 1 hour, 1 day, but no more than 24 hours. I literally set a timer. This is my “feel bad” time. It’s interesting because when I do this and allow myself to lay in bed, cry, say all the negative things in the world, it’s empowering.
When I feel discouraged, I used to fight it. I used to spend my energy finding every possible way to become ENCOURAGED. I ended up feeling worse for myself because whatever I was doing wasn’t working.
Vicious cycle. We don’t like those, k?
When you allow yourself to lay in bed and feel bad, you are giving yourself permission to feel those feelings. After about 30 minutes, you actually feel a bit better.
Set that timer.
WHAT COMES NEXT
Well, after you’ve acknowledged your feelings, felt it for a bit, it’s time to start pulling yourself out, got it?
I’m just going to be honest right now, it’s not easy and I don’t care how many blog posts or motivational videos you listen to, it’s not easy.
It takes ENERGY. It can be draining. That’s the truth.
HERE’S WHAT I DO
After feeling your feelings
STEP NO. ONE
For me, taking the first step is the most difficult ( I think we can all agree that the first step is the most difficult for everyone ).
The first thing that I typically do is clean up. Part of my morning routine is to make my bed and clean up my office space so that I can have a clear mind.
Obviously if I skipped my morning routine, I skipped cleaning up. When you have a clean space, it clears your mind. Well, it clears my mind.
…ummm & I obviously try to have fun with it.
I force myself out of bed
I make my bed
I open the shades
I put away anything on the floor
Clean up my environment just as I would if I was having a good day, ok?
When I tell you that my mood shifts just from that step, I’m not even joking.
When we are feeling discouraged, we feel defeated. In order to overcome the feeling of discouragement, we need to pick ourselves up. In times of feeling discouragement, we often doubt ourselves.
That first step gives you that little boost of energy, and again, this is just what works for me.
If you are feeling discouraged, I would suggest doing the opposite of what you feel like doing. Get dressed if you aren’t. Take a shower. Eat something healthy. Anything simple that makes you feel good.
STEP NO. TWO
I keep a list handy.
This list consists of the things that make me feel good.
IT IS A REMINDER and sometimes we need one, ya know? I keep this list in my phone and in a journal. After I’ve forced myself out of bed or to take that first step, it’s easier to start going through this list.
A few tips on MY list:
Journaling - writing has always helped me feel inspired
Going for a walk - switching up the environment is a game changer
Putting on the sounds of the rain with eucalyptus oil in my aromatherapy diffuser
Calling a friend that always makes me laugh
Watching a motivational video - I love Les Brown & Tony Robbins
…just to name a few.
Just looking at this list reminds me that doing these tasks actually WORK for me. I wrote them down for a reason. Find what works for you and keep it in a list to remind yourself when you feel discouraged.
STEP NO. THREE
Go. Go. Go.
In my podcast that I recorded that day last week, I gave a few tips on how to get out of a funk and push your limits, but at the end of the day, the tips only work if you do. Step 3 is go time. You just have to do it.
So, when I said earlier that I recorded a podcast, I was pushing my limits when I felt discouraged. I did what I didn’t feel like doing. I took the first step to get me going, I did a few things to make myself feel good and I did what I had to do.
While it’s totally normal to feel discouraged, you have the CHOICE to pull yourself out. It’s in your mind. It takes a lot of will power, determination and focus. Everyone gets discouraged. But feeling discouraged is not your final destination. It’s part of the journey.
Understanding that your ONLY WAY OUT of feeling discouraged is to GO, will become your golden ticket to feeling encouraged.
Whether you are trying to build a brand, get through school or whatever the situation may be that leaves you feeling discouraged, ACCEPTING the discouragement will never help to change your circumstances.
Acknowledging it and moving forward will.
Listen, I get discouraged all the time. I was bullied growing up and never thought I’d be accepted, so I felt discouraged in life.
I went to college for 2 years and realized it wasn’t for me, so I felt discouraged about my future.
I moved to Miami, got my Real Estate license and realized it wasn’t for me, so I felt discouraged about who I would become.
Through all of those moments of feeling discouraged, I focused on what I wanted in life.
I wanted to be happy
I wanted to be close to family
I wanted to work for myself
I wanted to improve someone else’s life
I wanted to have a healthy relationship
Today, I live in Miami Beach, I own a marketing agency, I am close to my family and see them all the time, I have a happy and healthy relationship, I have this incredible brand + blog where I get to inspire others.
Would I have ever thought 5 years ago that this would be my reality?
Do I still have days of feeling discouraged? I mean… obviously!
Life is a journey and we will all face these feelings. The one’s who succeed and achieve what they want in life are the ones who kept pushing forward.
That is the reason behind WHY I recorded a podcast at my lowest point. It was me pushing my limits. Not giving up. Finding that inspiration and reaching the light at the end of the tunnel.
Was my day then miraculously amazing? Nope. But, if you knew how inspired I felt after I did it, you’d begin doing what you DON’T feel like doing whenever you feel discouraged.
On that note… I’m off to journal! I hope you found this valuable :)