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Last Updated on December 4, 2020

What to Do With Your Life When All Hope Is Lost

What to Do With Your Life When All Hope Is Lost

Are you in a situation in your life right now where you feel the odds are against you and all hope is lost?

You are not alone.

Things can happen in life where you’ll suddenly find yourself at the downside of hope. It could be the loss of someone or something dear to you, a circumstance that is too much to bear, some things that are not working out, a phase where you’ve got stuck and can’t see any path forward, a feeling that you are all by yourself, or a total loss of interest in living.

No matter what you’ve gone through or are going through, you can get over your current circumstances and beam with the ray of hope again. You will find in this article some useful suggestions to help you rekindle your hope and triumph over your current situation.

What Is Hope?

Hope is an expression of confidence in life, a basis for more practical dispositions such as patience, determination, and courage. Hope provides aims and the motivation to attain those aims.[1]

Why Hope Is Important in Life

Hope is a great necessity for producing and sustaining the enthusiasm required to live a purposeful and fulfilling life. If you want to live a full and meaningful life, hope is one companion you can’t afford to lose.

It is said that:[2]

“Man can live 40 days without food, three days without water, eight minutes without air, but only one second without hope.”

Below are some ways hope is essential in life:

1. Hope Produces the Courage Required to Face Life Challenges

Many situations in life come without a warning, and people often find themselves unprepared to handle the difficulties that may arise as a result of the situation.

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For example, the COVID-19 pandemic that struck the entire world didn’t give any notice, yet it has claimed hundreds of thousands of lives, millions of jobs, and businesses have lost billions of dollars.

There are other challenges that may not come in the same magnitude as COVID-19 but can have debilitating effects on an individual’s health, finance, family, or business. But when you can find an anchor of hope in the midst of your challenges, hope will arise from the inside of you and you will suddenly gain the courage to face the challenge.

It sometimes works like magic when you suddenly find strength in your weakness, hope in your hopelessness, and opportunities in the midst of scarcity.

2. Hope Is Optimistic That Things Will Work Out

Hope does not give up too soon, and it doesn’t accept defeat.

When you have hope, you can get almost anything done because you believe that your efforts will eventually payout. Hope helps you believe that despite the unpalatable experiences you are having, you will eventually overcome them.

3. Hope Helps Initiate New Strategies

Hope gives you the initiative to come up with new strategies in finding a solution instead of giving up. When you have hope, you’ll become creative and innovative to find alternative ways to come out of your current situation.

Hope looks for new ways to achieve its dreams instead of succumbing to the weight of impossibilities.

4. Hope Helps You Stay in the Game Until a Solution is Found

There are times when you can’t even see a way forward in a situation. It’s just like having to swim to the shore when you find yourself in a capsized boat.

You don’t even know how far or close you are to the shore, and you have only two choices: to drawn and die or continue to swim for as long as you can until when probably a miracle happens.

Sustaining your hope can help you keep on until a solution is found. Most people have found near-miraculous solutions as a result of persevering and staying in the game.

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How to Recover and Rekindle Hope

When in a situation where you are thrown off balance and found yourself on the lowest end of hope, here are some suggestions on what you can do to recover, rekindle, and rejuvenate your hope.

1. Express Your Feelings

Get it out of your head.

Sometimes in order to find a solution to a problem, you have to start by unloading your mind from it. There is a kind of relief that you get when you express your feeling by speaking out either to yourself or to a listener.

You can write out your situation in your personal journal and depending on the sensitivity of the issue, you can write on a personal blog or make a video post to narrate your experience on a platform like Instagram.

Speaking out, your mind will be free from bearing the burden alone and you can get helpful counsel that can spring up hope in you again.

2. Find a Community

Apart from expressing your feelings through various means, you can also find hope in communities. You will find communities of people facing similar challenges as yours. In such communities, you will discover coping mechanisms or hear success stories of how people are overcoming the common challenge.

You can find such communities by attending a networking event or searching for interest groups on social media. As you get to hear other people’s stories and how they’ve been able to overcome similar challenges, you will find hope to overcome yours as well.

3. Connect to a Bigger Picture and a Larger Purpose of Yours

When you focus on your immediate challenges and how badly things have turned out, it might be difficult to find hope. But when you focus on a bigger picture and larger purpose of your life, you will find inspiration to believe again.

You’ll also know that this phase will pass and there will be the dawn of a new morning, a morning that will lead you to your bigger dream.

4. Relive Your Memorable Moments

Sometimes, some problems can look like much of a big deal until you recall some of your live events. You might find out that you have been through worse things and came out strong. You will also find several moments that you had initially lost hope on certain issues but put up a good fight and became victorious.

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Even if those issues were of smaller magnitudes compared to the ones you are currently facing, you can still use a similar approach at a higher scale to bring the desired solution.

5. Do Something Different

Another way to find hope is to try something different. You can change your routines or change your environment by going on a vacation where you’ll see beautiful places and scenes and meet new people.

You can also spend some time with nature to revive hope. It’s been found that spending time with nature has both physical and psychological effects. It reduces stress and also relieves depression and anxiety.[3]

6. Read Biographies and Autobiographies

There is a common saying that there is no new thing under heaven.

People have come and gone in this world and have encountered all kinds of difficult situations. So many stories of travails and triumph have been told or written, and reading such information can help you gain motivation in your hopelessness and you can also find practical ways to deal with your peculiar situation.

7. Watch Heroic Movies

Whether they are based on true-life stories or are just pure fiction, you can find inspiration by watching heroic movies.

Movies have a way of appealing to our sensitives. They can also spark the drive you need to forge ahead. When you watch how ordinary people turn situations around and become great in spite of all odds, something inside of you will assure you that you can also overcome your current situations and triumph.

8. Rewatch a Historic Sports Event

Sport is full of stories of surprises and magical comebacks, especially at the “injury time” when all hope is lost. Watching such games can help you gain excitement and rekindle your hope.

There are also specific stories of coaches, teams, and athletes that have staged a surprise comeback when people have given up on them.

Worthy of particular mention is the Tiger Woods’ story, which has been tagged as one of the finest comeback stories in sporting history.[4] Woods won the Masters again after going through a career slump due to personal challenges and ill-health.

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Such an inspirational story can help you realize that you can still find hope even in the most hopeless situation.

9 Seek for Help

You can talk to your partner, friend, counselor, or anyone willing to listen to your story.

Apart from speaking to people, you might also need to take proactive steps. You can ask for specific help such as creating a crowdfunding campaign if you need financial help, talk to an advocacy group if you are being cheated or abused, or ask for help from other experts that can handle your specific situation.

10. Seek Divine Help

As humans, many things are beyond us and this is why we should not hesitate to seek divine intervention whenever we fall flat on our face. Several people have found hope, joy, and restoration by seeking help from ‘above’.

By praying and unloading your burdens to God, you acknowledge that you are only human and require the help that is greater than what any other human can provide.

Final Thoughts

There is always a source of strength and hope available for every situation.

Talk to someone, do something different, look within yourself, read biographies, relive old memories, or seek divine help. When you do, your mind will be refreshed, your problems will appear lighter, and you will find hope to navigate through until you come out of the situation.

More Tips for Getting Through the Tough Times

Featured photo credit: Jeremy Bishop via unsplash.com

Reference

[1] Psychology Today: Is Hope Good or Bad?
[2] Cam Taylor: What You Can’t Live Without
[3] The Shores of Lake Phalen: Benefits of Being In Nature
[4] The Guardian: Tiger Woods’ Masters win is a great sporting comeback story

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Leon Ho

Founder & CEO of Lifehack

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Last Updated on April 19, 2021

11 Positive Thoughts for Your Everyday Motivation

11 Positive Thoughts for Your Everyday Motivation

The power of positive thoughts cannot be denied, even though sometimes it can seem a little like a cliché when you hear people talking about it. Well, I’m here to tell you that cliché or not, the mental and physical benefits of thinking positively are a proven way to give you more confidence, improve your self-esteem, give you motivation, and generally put you in a better mood. Thinking of at least one positive thought every day can have significant benefits for you.

Some scientific studies even suggest that thinking positively can reduce the likelihood of health conditions, like depression, hypertension, and a variety of other stress-related disorders.

This sounds amazing, but what does it really mean to think positively?

Positive thinking isn’t about finding your inner smile. Many people rarely have what they would consider joyous inner thoughts but that doesn’t mean they can’t be content with themselves and their life.

Positive thinking (thinking of positive thoughts every day) is more about finding the positive imagery in your life and viewing things through more optimistic eyes, especially if you’ve got yourself into a rut of seeing things negatively.

The biggest problem with positive thoughts is that they wear off quickly and things like rejection, negative experiences, setbacks, and heartbreak can soon put you into a downward spiral that gets you back into that negative funk you hate.

And, let’s be honest, being in a negative funk is a sure-fire way to strip your motivation and leave you unable to perform at the levels you know you can. If you’re looking for an instant way to boost your motivation, join the free Fast-Track Class – Activate Your Motivation. It’s a free intensive session that can help you identify your inner drive and build a sustinable motivation engine. You can sign up for the free session here.

So, how do you keep yourself positive in a world that seems hell-bent on bringing you down? Well, with the right routine of positive thoughts you can ensure that you wake up every day feeling motivated and looking forward to everything life has to throw at you.

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Here are some tips so you can start thinking of positive thoughts every day.

1. Be Thankful You Woke up This Morning

Not to start on a morbid note, but you woke up this morning. Some people didn’t. Don’t think of it is as a depressing morality tale, just use it to remember that you’ve won the greatest gift life has to offer – you’re alive.

It’s so easy to dwell on the negative aspects of our lives, but we always seem to miss the most obvious positive thing we have – life itself. Take a deep breath, look outside your window, and marvel at the world around you.

2. You Don’t Have to Listen to Haters

There’s no doubt that some people are really mean-spirited individuals who will love to ruin your day. Well, I’m here to tell you they can’t. Not if you don’t let them.

Ignore the haters. Dismiss their bile for what it is – vicious comments of unfulfilled people. Remind yourself that you are above them and nothing they say will bring you down.

3. Don’t Compare Yourself to Others

I know, I know. It’s easy to say, “Don’t compare yourself with anybody else.” But at the end of the day, we all have envious thoughts when we see somebody we perceive to be more successful than we are.

But think about it, are they really better than you and even if they are, does it even matter? By spending time being jealous you are wasting time on negative thoughts that could be spent pursuing something that makes you happy.

4. You Must Take a Chance

It’s easy to shy away from something that is high risk and high reward out of fear of being labeled a loser.

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Have you ever noticed that doing so actually makes you feel worse than if you’d just taken the risk in the first place? We know that rejection feels bad and failure can weigh heavily, but regret is a far stronger emotion over time.

Don’t hesitate if you have the chance. Go for it and tell yourself that if you fail, it’s no big deal. At least you tried.

Perhaps the perfect example of this approach is David Goggins. We all have a lot to learn from the inspirational David Goggins story and his priceless sayings.[1]

Goggins, considered by many to be ‘the toughest man alive’, is a retired Navy SEAL and the only person ever to complete SEAL training, the U.S. Army Ranger School, and Air Force Tactical Air Controller training. He’s also one of the world’s top endurance athletes and held the Guinness World Record for pull-ups, completing 4,030 in 17 hours.

He sounds like a ‘naturally gifted badass person’ right? But in his book, he reveals that he was actually ‘The weakest man in the world’, in his own words.

Overcoming obesity, poverty, racism, learning disabilities, abusive violent father, he came through the other side, inspiring people to embrace suffering and struggle, to find their greatness and inner peace. He took the slim chances he had and changed his life completely.

5. Accept That Things End

Even the best things in life end eventually, so don’t worry about them. Don’t fret about how the good times are about to stop, just enjoy them while they last. And when they do finally end, be happy in the knowledge that something else just as good will come along.

6. Don’t Judge Others

This ties in with point number 2 above – you won’t like it if others judge you so don’t judge them. We know it can be difficult to refrain from labeling other people, but doing so is a sure-fire way to start descending into a negative thought spiral.

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We all live in a world where passing judgment is tolerated, but not only is accepting people a great way to make others feel better, it’s also a fantastic way to foster positive thoughts within ourselves.

7. Don’t do Things for Others That Make You Unhappy

We all want to make other people happy, right? But what if the things that other people want us to do makes us unhappy?

If you’re doing something just for the satisfaction of others, don’t. Stop it right now. Your happiness and your time should never be sacrificed for the satisfaction of someone else. You won’t be able to think of positive thoughts every day if you are unhappy in the first place.

8. Don’t Like Your Job? Then Quit.

Okay, that’s a little dramatic, but nothing is more certain to drain your happiness levels quicker than a job that you hate. If you spend your evenings and days off dreading returning to the office, then start to do something about it.

We’re not talking about jeopardizing your livelihood by quitting (although the dramatic heading for this point certainly suggests so). What we mean is start to make plans and formulize an exit strategy. Nothing promotes positive thoughts more than a plan that removes something negative from your life.

Start simple by saving up funds to make the change and circulating your CV. The first step may seem difficult, but the sense of relief it gives will improve your thought patterns immeasurably.

It might be scary to start over at someplace new and going through a screening process that might be tedious, but once you understand that selling yourself can be easier than you think, you are halfway through.[2]

9. Take Control of Your Mornings

How you begin the day will set the tone for how the rest of it will go. Getting up in a panicked state is a very efficient way to kick start a negative emotional spiral. Get up bright and early, and give yourself time to prepare for the day.

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Though some of the mind-boggling thoughts you are having when waking up can be positive for you and even mean more than you imagine, it’s better to set up a fixed positive mental routine.

Think about the positive aspects of your life and tell yourself things like, “Today is going to be a good day” or “I’ll be amazing today.” Yeah, I know this sounds cheesy, but positive words instill positive thoughts.

10. Focus on the Good Things in Your Life No Matter How Small

You’re going to hit obstacles during the day. Things don’t generally run perfectly all the time. The trick is that when you encounter a challenge, don’t dwell on it and choose to focus on the positives you can find no matter how small they may seem.

If you get stuck in a traffic jam, don’t fret about how it is slowing you down. Take positivity in the fact that you have extra time to listen to the radio station you have been enjoying. If you head to your local store and it’s out of the ingredients you need for your dinner party, buy something else and create a different food masterpiece.

Focussing on good things is a great way to gain positive momentum in your life. The huge power of momentum is that even a series of very small things can accumulate to massive results – with the aid of momentum.

11. Look at the Funny Side

Even dark situations can have a humorous side if you look at them the right way. When in a dark or trying situation, remind yourself that what is happening to you will probably make a great story in the future and may even be passed on as a joke. Look for the funny side and laugh.

Final Thoughts

We all know that positive thoughts can be incredibly motivational but in modern life, it can be difficult to stay uplifted when the world around you seems determined to bring you down. By following some of the tips in our guide above, you could harness the power of positive thinking and find yourself starting every day motivated. So, start thinking of positive thoughts every day!

More Tips to Start Thinking of Positive Thoughts Every Day

Featured photo credit: Jacob Townsend via unsplash.com

Reference

[1] Vision, Belief, Change: Best David Goggins Quotes
[2] Vision, Belief, Change: Is Selling Yourself Easier Than You Thought?

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