I often find myself in dark thoughts, an overwhelming sadness, or in apathy, where my emotions almost get completely closed off. (I have not always been like this, it has been very attached to my experiences of narcissistic abuse). It is like my mind can not handle all of this pain that was inflicted on me.My mind protects me a little; I’ll get days of pain, numb days, and then rare moments of feeling hope.
(Btw, a “go to song” that my parents played in my childhood, somehow I find it comforting! Listen Here )
Since I do still manage to live on, and most of the time manage to crawl up from the pain, and get occasional hopeful thoughts of the future, I figured I’d write a post dedicated to those who have lost hope, and some thoughts about how you can regain a little hope, when all seems lost.
Some may think it is bullshit, others may take away a word or two from this, what do I know. I’m not some guru, I just want to spread some light from my little corner of the world. Cause the world is not fair, bad things happen to good people, and sometimes life just really sucks and you have no idea how to go on. Maybe it is somewhat helpful to see that you are not alone in your suffering. I want to say that I do have the utmost respect for other people’s pain, and I do not presume to know best. These are just some thoughts that helped me personally during this extremely painful time in my life.
I am also aware that people can reach a level of pain that is simply unbearable. In that case it may be best to seek professional advice, if you feel you can’t ride out the storm alone.
So, anyway, just some ideas about what I try to think/do when I feel life is total shit, and when I’m wondering what the hell I was put on this earth for…
- “There is a reason I’m here”. Ok, I don’t know if I’m here cause God/Higher Powers wanted a fun experiment about how much pain a person can tolerate before they crack. If so, I’m not gonna give God/some other “power” that satisfaction. I’m gonna hang in there just to show them they can not break me. Same reasoning goes when I think about the narcissist who inflicted insane amounts of emotional pain on me. I won’t give that creature the joy of seeing me down and out. He can burn in hell, and I’ll become happy just to spite him!
- “Feelings and/or circumstances can change”. I usually think back on another time I’ve had a really rough period, and how I got through it then. Before the narcissist I had a LTR with a man, and the ending of that relationship was like ripping my heart out. I honestly questioned if I could survive that pain, at the time. But after about a year, I had healed quite a lot. I no longer felt the same pain. Now, I didn’t “do” anything special to heal, I basically just cried whenever I needed too, for a year. Sometimes you have to “rest” in your grief and pain. Think of nature, how things rest in winter and come alive again in spring. I think us humans need our “winters” too. You can’t be a freakin blossoming cherry tree year-round, now, can you!
- Take a little action, do something a little different. You probably have a hard time doing this when you’re at your lowest point. All you can do is try. Baby steps.
Are you so low that you just want to lay in bed? Put on a good movie at least. Do you only have energy to sit around on your sofa? Force yourself to do something “one step above” that; go for a walk, write a blog post about your shitty day/life, call someone you trust. We will never experience anything that makes us feel better, if we keep doing the same thing over and over. You may have been served the worst life circumstances ever, but it is only you that have the power to change any of it. It’s the depression talking to you, when something is telling you that you can not change anything. You can.
- Try not to compare yourself to other “successful”/”happy”people. We all have struggles and this is your journey. Some people might seem to have it easy, but remember, you do not know what secret sorrows they may carry, or what possible personal hell they could face in the future. You may not be able to change all your circumstances in life, but you can aim at having the best quality of life that is possible for a person with your background and experiences.
- “The alternative is worse/The alternative is unknown, and could therefore be worse”. When I have been at my lowest, I have started thinking; what alternatives do I have, other than keep fighting, keep going, take small steps to feel a little better? The alternatives to keeping on struggling, frighten me more.
- Find something that you feel gratefulness for. Sometimes this doesn’t really work for me, depending on the level of pain. But it works sometimes, to think that “at least I’m not a refugee on a small, overloaded, sinking boat on the Mediterranean”. Sometimes I come up with only a couple of things, like: “I’m alive, I have an apartment, I have food”. Other times it can be a bit more positive like; “I actually do have a few people who care about me. I have a blog. I’ve been loved. I could be loved again..”.
- Self-care; sleep, food, exercise, all these things can make quite a difference to your well-being. My mother works in healthcare and she’s told me about research that says depression can get a lot “lighter” from physical exercise. I think it’s true, I do feel better from it, anyways. In self-care I’ll include trying to have some sort of social connections. Loneliness at least for me, makes everything feel worse.
- Lastly; forgive and accept yourself and have compassion for yourself. You are doing the best you can!
(Now edited with the addition of a song link, you can find that Here too)💋