6 Ways To Get Yourself Through A Challenging Time

I wrote this post while in the San Diego airport. I was waiting for a flight that would take me away from the place I called home for four years. All of my belongings were being loaded onto the plane, I had just left my best friends, and I was freaking the F out. I wrote this as a form of therapy for myself and decided that when I felt better I would go back and edit it to read more as a blog post and less as a journal.

Two weeks later I felt like I was officially on the other side of that challenging time. I began to edit what I wrote in the San Diego airport from Sydney, Australia, where I am beginning a new chapter in my life. 

Practicing the suggestions noted below while in San Diego helped me keep my head above water so that I could enjoy my last few weeks. Continuing to practice these suggestions after leaving San Diego completely pulled me out of my freak out and helped me get back to my normal self!

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My last week in San Diego someone asked me if I was scared to leave.

My response was intelligent and eloquently worded.

It came out something like this, “eeeehhhhh…”

My friend immediately jumped in and said, “she’s scared, she just doesn’t tell anyone that.”

I responded by laughing and saying, “yes, that’s 100% true.”

Then I thought, “Why am I not telling people I’m scared?”

Yes, I do want my Facebook page, Instagram, and blog posts to have a positive energy to them. I unfollow all people who bitch and moan. I definitely don’t want to give off that vibe!

I do, however, want to be honest.

My Instagram feed is about to be flooded with happy, colorful pictures of Australia, my blog will fill up with travel and lifestyle posts about my Australian adventures, and my captions will be written with the intent to inspire you to pursue your dreams.

While I am incredibly excited for my new chapter, I want to make it clear that making this change wasn’t as simple as deciding to go, saying goodbye, and building a new life.

The honest truth, beyond the Instagram filter, is that I had a really hard time leaving San Diego.

During the two months leading up to my departure I woke up with anxiety 95% of weekday mornings (vacations excluded). I felt down, questioned my decision, thought about how much I was going to miss my San Diego family, and cried a lot. My last week, any time I was alone (which wasn’t often thankfully), I started to have those hyperventilating type cries and my anxiety began to reach more of a panic level.

I’m telling you this because I want you to understand what’s beyond my Instagram feed.

I want you to know that I struggle too.

Enough of the sad stuff…

I think the point has been made!

While I was going through this emotional time, I messed around with a couple ways to dig myself out of my low points so that I could enjoy my last few weeks and remain excited for what was to come.

There were six things in particular that worked the best for me.

I hope some (or all) work for you as well! 

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Six Ways To Get Yourself Through A Challenging Time:

1. Get It Out!

Cry it out, dance it out, laugh it out, hug it out, whatever. Just get it out!

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An example of laughing it out!

Negative emotions are heavy and toxic to the mind, body, and soul. If they are not released, they will build up over time. This build up often manifests as negativity, irritability, depression, or anxiety. As time goes on, the feelings become heavier and ultimately bring us to what many refer to as a “breaking point.” When this breaking point happens, there tends to be little to no control over how the emotions are released.

It’s helpful to take control of the release and let these emotions out on your own terms, sooner rather than later. I’ve found crying to be the most effective method for letting out heavy emotions. There seems to be a stigma associated with crying. People sometimes view it as a weakness, something a strong person should never succumb to.

Let me make it absolutely clear that there’s no shame in crying.

To me, crying is by far the most powerful tool to release heavy emotions. I often have a hard time getting the waterworks going. When this happens I watch This Is Us, a show that’s guaranteed to produce some tears. I let whatever sad scene that happened that week get the ball rolling and then I crawl in bed and use this as an opportunity to get the rest of the heavy emotions out.

When I’m done I feel so much lighter! In fact, I feel so much happier that I often laugh at myself for how hard I cried!

If you are feeling that you need a release but crying is a bit too extreme at the moment, that’s totally okay! There are other ways to release the heavy emotions.

Try putting on a fun song and dancing around your house, call up your funniest friend and let it out via a belly laugh, or call up your most trusted confidant and have a deep conversation about what’s bothering you.

It really doesn’t matter how you get it out. There’s no owner’s manual to life that says when ‘x’ happens you must dance, when ‘y’ happens you must laugh, and when ‘z’ happens you must cry.

Choose what works best for you in that given moment! You know yourself better than anyone.

2. Deep Belly Breaths 

meditation

Mediation is a wonderful and powerful tool to relax and ground yourself. However, it is straight up impossible for me on my most stressful days.

What I found to be far more feasible, in terms of focusing on breath, is taking really deep breaths in through your nose and out through your mouth. Let the air fill your belly first, so it makes a Buddha belly, then move the air up into your chest, hold at the top of the inhale for a couple seconds, and exhale through your mouth. Repeat this as long as you need or are able to. Any little bit helps!

3. Manifest Positivity 

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Spend time manifesting what you want for your future or how you’d like a certain situation to play out.

I am a huge supporter of manifestation. I really believe that what you put out into the universe comes back to you. Take some time to actively think about a positive outcome to whatever has got you down. Although you won’t be able to see the results of this exercise until later on down the road, the process is fun and distracting. It takes you away from the challenging part of the journey and focuses your mind, heart, and soul on the wonderful things to come.

4. Be Alone In Nature

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Nature is a powerful healer. Without even having to try, you will find yourself beginning to calm down and become more grounded and clear-headed. This is really my number one but I don’t always have this option accessible to me so I moved it down to number four.

5. Create a Sanctuary In Your Home 

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Create a space in your home that’s solely for you to calm down. For me, it’s my bedroom. In my room I have a Himalayan salt lamp, a stress relief candle, sage, a dream catcher, healing crystals, and a little Buddha. When I turn the lights off and turn the lamp and candle on, my body and mind know it’s time to relax. It’s my little guarantee that even though its a great, big, crazy world out there, I will always have my safe space to come back to.

If you can’t make this space in your home try looking for a yoga or meditation studio in your area as an escape!

6. Practice Gratitude

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Keep a gratitude journal by your bed. Each night write at least one thing you are grateful for. This trains your brain to focus on the positive. If you’re thinking that it seems silly, know that I completely agree with you! Somehow this little trick really does work! To be honest, I rarely write it down because I don’t remember until after the lights are out. However, I do spend time each night thinking about what I am grateful for and trying to find the positive in a negative or challenging situation.

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While these are my top six, I did try a handful of other ways to calm down. If you are feeling down and the six suggestions noted above did not work for you, feel free to reach out to me! I am always happy to help. Therapists and energy healers can also be a great resource to help you through a tough time! 

Love & light,

Annie

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