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Don’t Feel Beaten Up When Your Road Is Blocked, It’s Never Too Late For A Comeback

Don’t Feel Beaten Up When Your Road Is Blocked, It’s Never Too Late For A Comeback

Goals and dreams are what makes life exciting, motivating, purposeful and worthwhile. When the path is easy and straightforward, it can be the most fulfilling feeling but inevitably obstacles and roadblocks come around the corner; not to tell us our dream is unreachable and unattainable, but to allow us to learn, grow and become the person we need to be in order to get there.

For many of us, once we come across a hurdle, it can simply be what stops our dream in its tracks – the motivation wanes, our beliefs in achieving our goals breaks down and it can seem impossible and dejecting.

In a society where we are judged for our looks and age alongside our abilities and competence, having our dreams placed in the hands of others’ opinions of us is a dangerous game and one that will quash the dreams of even the strong-minded of people. If you’re feeling beaten down or even that it’s too late for you to achieve your life-long ambition then take a page out of Meryl Streep’s book.

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A talented, award-winning actress, Meryl Streep is loved and admired by millions for the countless roles she’s played in our best-loved movies. But it has by no means been an easy road for her; struggles to break the Hollywood mould in more ways than one has meant she has had to reach her dream the hard way compared to many but the lessons she learnt has made her into the well-known, talented actress we know today.

Love Yourself, Be Yourself And Never Give Up

Meryl Streep 3

    At a very young age, Meryl wanted to be on the stage performing. But it was at an audition for King Kong, aged 27, that she came up against something that would stop many from continuing their goal pursuits – she was told by the producer that she was simply “too ugly” for the role.

    Like many of us doing with ourselves, Streep found fault with her looks and sometimes struggled to really embrace them. But she realised that by caring what other people thought of her was only bringing her down and stopping her from fully going after what she wanted.

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    “This was a pivotal moment for me. This one rogue opinion could derail my dreams of becoming an actress or force me to pull myself up by the boot straps and believe in myself. I took a deep breath and said ‘I’m sorry you think I’m too ugly for your film but you’re just one opinion in a sea of thousands and I’m off to find a kinder tide. Today I have 18 Academy Awards.”

    “For young women, I would say, don’t worry so much about your weight. Girls spend way too much time thinking about that, and there are better things. For young men, and women, too, what makes you different or weird, that’s your strength … I used to hate my nose. Now I don’t. It’s OK.”

    We can’t ever let other people determine our future and – even worse – the thoughts we have of ourselves. To truly achieve what we want in life we need to learn how to embrace ourselves, love ourselves and believe in ourselves. Resilience is immensely important when it comes to happiness and continuing the path to our dreams and goals. Developing a mindset that keeps you on the path no matter what you are faced with, will prove to be the linchpin in becoming successful in what you want to achieve in life.

    Embrace Getting Older. Never See It As A Reason To Give Up

    Meryl Streep 2

      It’s another societal view that getting older is somehow a decline in achieving your hopes and dreams. It’s often associated with a lack of ability or incompetence but this is quite the opposite.

      Although Meryl Streep is a world-famous actress now, she took numerous roles from a young age without much success or acknowledgement. Once she hit her 40s, she noticed a definite shift in the types of roles she was being offered mirroring the attitudes Hollywood and society as a whole view older women.

      “When I was 40, I was offered three witches in one summer. And I thought, ‘OK, this is it. You turn 40, and oh my god.’ The only reason I have a career at 64 is that I’ve had hits later in life. I’ve found that once certain movies are out, audiences aren’t so age-phobic. They were willing, and they were happy.”

      It wasn’t until she was getting prestigious roles about strong, independent, older women such as Miranda Priestly in The Devil Wears Prada that she started receiving more mainstream recognition and more and more roles portraying older women were becoming more desirable. Considered today as one of the greatest american actresses, Streep’s career and attitude has helped change this Hollywood mindset by working steadily on various projects including mentoring women at The Writers Lab – a new initiative nurturing female screenwriters over the age of 40.

      Streep’s understanding of the discrimination that older women face has been to the benefit and gain towards the shifting of ageist attitudes in our society. While age and getting older is a scary concept to many, the message that she puts forward is that it’s never too late – it’s never too late to continue on with your dream or even start pursuing a dream you always had. Don’t let others stop you from living your life and never use it as a reason not to be happy.

      Featured photo credit: Gareth Cattermole via thedailybeast.com

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      Jenny Marchal

      A passionate writer who loves sharing about positive psychology.

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      Last Updated on October 14, 2020

      Had a Bad Day? 7 Ways to Rebound From It and Feel Good Again

      Had a Bad Day? 7 Ways to Rebound From It and Feel Good Again

      Today didn’t turn out as you planned, but it doesn’t mean you’re weak. It simply means that you’re human, and you’re not bad just because you had a bad day.

      “Not everyday is a good day but there is something good in every day.” -Alice Morse Earle

      It’s not the end of the world when you find yourself thinking “I had a bad day,” but it can feel like it. You may have had plans that fell apart, experiences that set you back, and interactions that only did harm.

      You may have started the day thinking you could take on it all, only to find you could hardly get out of bed. When you have a bad day, you can forget to look at the good.

      Sometimes, self-care helps us to remember why we are worth it. It helps us to recharge and reset our mindset. It helps us to know that there are still options and that the day isn’t over yet.

      Love yourself today, no matter how hard it’s been. That’s the way to find yourself amidst the hardships you have. That’s how you center yourself and regain focus and live a more meaningful life. Give yourself some credit and compassion.

      Here are 7 ways to rebound from a bad day using self-compassion as a tool. If you had a bad day, these are for you!

      1. Make a Gratitude List

      In a study on gratitude, psychologists Dr. Robert A Emmons and Dr. Michael E. McCullough conducted an experiment where one group of people wrote out gratitude lists for ten weeks while another group wrote about irritations. The study found that the group that wrote about gratitude reported more optimistic mindsets in their lives[1].

      Overall, having a gratitude list improved well-being and made one truly grateful by counting the blessings in their lives.

      Write a list of what you are grateful for if you had a bad day. Make it as long as you like, but also remember to note why you’re grateful for each thing you write.

      What has given you the most joy? What has set you up for better days? Keep a tally of triumphs in mind, especially when you do have the bad days.

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      The day doesn’t define you, and you still have things of value that surround you. These could be material things, spiritual connections and experiences, relationships, basic needs, emotional and mental well-being, physical health, progress towards hopes and dreams, or simply being alive.

      Here are some other simple ways to practice gratitude.

      2. Write in a Journal

      Journaling affects your overall mental health, which also affects physical health and aids in the management of stress, depression, anxiety, and more[2].

      All you need is a pen and paper, or you could do an online, password-protected journal such as Penzu. The key is to get started and not pressure yourself on how polished or perfect it is. You don’t need to have prior experience to start journal writing. Just start.

      Write out everything that is bothering you for 15 minutes. This helps with rumination, processing problems, and can even aid with brainstorming solutions.

      However you approach it, you can find patterns of thinking that no longer serve you and start to transform your overall mental state. This will impact all areas of your life and is a great coping skill.

      3. Meditate

      Meditation can help you overcome negative thought patterns, worrying about the future, dwelling on the past, or struggling to overcome a bad day[3]. It shifts your mentality and helps you focus on the present or any one thing you truly want to focus on.

      Here is an example of a meditation you can do:

      Get into a comfortable position. Close your eyes. Rest your body, release tension, and unclench your jaw. Tighten and release each muscle group in a body scan for progressive muscle relaxation.

      Focus on your breath, taking a few deep breaths. Let your belly expand when you breathe in for diaphragmatic breathing. Empty yourself completely of air, then return to normal breathing.

      Next, focus on the idea of self-love and let it erase negative thoughts. Think about the ways you’ve been judging yourself, with the narratives coming up that your mind may create.

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      Give yourself unconditional love and release judgment. Take your time meditating on this because you matter. This is particularly important if you had a bad day.

      Check out this article for more on how to get started with a meditation practice.

      4. Do Child’s Pose

      Yoga Outlet says:

      “Child’s Pose is a simple way to calm your mind, slow your breath, and restore a feeling of peace and safety. Practicing the pose before bedtime can help to release the worries of the day. Practicing in the morning can you help transition from sleeping to waking.”[4]

      When you do Child’s Pose, it can be between difficult positions in yoga, or it can be anytime you feel you need a rest. It helps you recover from difficulties and relax the mind.

      It also has the physical health benefits of elongating your back, opening your hips, and helping with digestion[5].

      To do Child’s Pose, rest your buttocks back on your feet, knees on the floor. Elongate your body over your knees with both arms extended or tucked back, with head and neck resting on the floor[6].

      Had a bad day? Try Child's Pose.

         

        Do this pose as a gift to yourself. You are allowing yourself to heal, rest, get time for yourself, recover, and recharge. When you’ve had a bad day, it’s there waiting for you.

        5. Try Positive Self-Talk

        Engage in positive self-talk. This is essentially choosing your thoughts.

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        When you have a negative thought, such as “I can’t do this,” replace it consciously with the thought “I can do this.” Give yourself positive affirmations to help with this.

        Negative self-talk fits into four general categories: personalizing or blaming yourself, magnifying or only focusing on the negative, catastrophizing or expecting the worst to happen, and polarizing or only seeing back and white[7].

        When you stop blaming yourself for everything and start focusing on the positive, expecting things to work out, and seeing the areas of grey in life, you reverse these negative mindsets and engage in positive self-talk.

        When you speak words of kindness to yourself, your brain responds with a more positive attitude. That attitude will affect everything you do. It’s how you take care of yourself if you had a bad day.

        Check in with yourself to know when you are having negative self-talk. Are you seeing patterns? When did they start to become a problem? Are you able to turn these thoughts around?

        6. Use Coping Skills and Take a Break

        Use your coping skills. This means not letting your thoughts take control of yourself.

        You can distract yourself and escape a bit. Do things you love. You can exercise, listen to music, dance, volunteer or help someone, be in nature, or read a book.

        It isn’t about repression. It’s about redirection. You can’t stay in thoughts that are no longer working for you.

        Sometimes, it’s okay to get out of your own way. Give yourself a break from the things going on in your head. You can always come back to a problem later. This may even help you figure out the best course of action as sometimes stepping away is the only way to see the solution.

        If you had a bad day, you may not feel like addressing what went wrong. You may need a break, so take one.

        7. If a Bad Day Turns Into Bad Days

        “I believe depression is legitimate. But I also believe that if you don’t exercise, eat nutritious food, get sunlight, get enough sleep, consume positive material, surround yourself with support, then you aren’t giving yourself a fighting chance.” –Jim Carrey

        If you’ve been feeling out of control, depressed, or unstable for more than a few weeks, it’s time to call a mental health professional. This is not because you have failed in any way. It’s because you are human, and you simply need help.

        You may not be able to quickly rebound from a bad day, and that’s fine. Feel what you feel, but don’t let it consume you.

        When you talk to a professional, share the techniques that you have already tried here and whether they were helpful. They may tell you additional ideas or gain insights from your struggles of not being able to rebound from a series of bad days.

        If you’re having more than just a bad day, they will want to know. If you don’t have the answers, that’s okay, too. You just need to try these tools and figure out how you’re feeling. That’s all that’s required of you.

        Keep taking care of yourself. Any progress is progress, no matter how small. Give yourself a chance to get better by reaching out.

        Final Thoughts

        If you had a bad day, don’t let it stop you.

        Know this: It’s okay not to be okay. You have a right to feel what you feel. But there is something you can do about it.

        You can invest in yourself via self-care.

        You are not alone in this. Everyone has bad days from time to time. You just need to know that you are the positive things you tell yourself.

        More Things You Can Do If You Had a Bad Day

        Featured photo credit: Anthony Tran via unsplash.com

        Reference

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