What do you do when everything goes wrong? Almost everyone has been in a situation where it seems like it’s impossible to focus on the positive things or talk to positive people, if not for the simple reason that it’s difficult to remember when the last time something good happened was.
How Do you Make Positive Things Happen in your Life?
At times that there seems to be so much wrong around you, this is a natural thing to ask. In this article, we’ll share some tried and true approaches to improving our focus on the positive things in our lives. There are ways you can control your mind and keep it from spiraling into negativity. We’ll end with some uplifting “everything is going wrong” quotes.
Create Good Habits
Good habits are the key to a successful and satisfying life. They give us the sense that we are in control. When everything seems wrong, form a new, positive habit, like meditating or working out or cutting down on fatty foods or your use of social media. To paraphrase a great ancient philosopher, we are what we are do every day, so positivity is a habit. Start doing something good every day. Forming good habits is not easy by any means and will take some time, but with the right focus, it will happen for you.
There are lots of things to be grateful for even if quite a bit seems wrong. Taking this a step further: Can you try to be grateful for something you hate? Can you thank people you don’t like for pointing out your flaws, because this will help you better yourself? Can you be grateful for breaking up with someone who took up all your free time? You can’t reasonably be expected to suddenly see flowers and roses instead of problems everywhere, but it’s important to realize you can always make a decision to see things differently and show gratitude.
Make a List
Make a list of the things that frighten you: encounters you fear, an idea or notion that scares you, even things that cause you pain. It will take a lot of courage to do this, but it will help you see what it is you really have to cope with. Trust us: writing something down on paper will make it a thousand times less scary. Difficult times in life should be appreciated because they make us stop, think what went wrong, and make changes. Make the list as detailed as possible. This will help you understand that some things are going right. You have a home, friends or family, and (best of all) an Internet connection! You’re probably in relatively good health too. People like refugees have it a lot worse than you.
Validate your Experience by Accepting It
Ancient philosophers had a movement called Stoicism. The idea behind it is that you can accept everything that goes wrong by finding value in conflict, accepting and embracing adversity, and growing through the challenges. This way, your life will not be determined by your problems and obstacles, but how you respond to them. The ancient Roman emperor Marc Aurelius wrote, “I see each and every one of these obstacles as an opportunity to practice some virtue: patience, courage, humility, resourcefulness, reason, justice, and creativity.”
You don’t feel good? It’s your emotions telling you to change something in your life. Usually, we need to practice better control over our reactions to negative things. According to some sources, people are innately resistant to change. Without a doubt, change can be scary, hard, and painful to experience because of our expectations – what if something even worse comes along? On the other hand, humans were migrants over most of history, for much longer than we were settled, enjoying regular incomes, and building lives on stability. Surely we can’t be that resistant to change. Here’s the truth about change: most of us will only dare to make one if the risk is less than the one we face remaining in a situation where everything feels wrong. So which risk is more appealing to you?
Think About What You Want Instead
Many of us have become professional complainers with time. We are very clear about what is causing us discomfort or pain and are quick to point it out. Asking ourselves what we want instead is a bit harder. “My life sucks” does not suffice. You also have to say what you like, what is giving you pleasure instead of pain, what works for you. For example, you might want a job that involves more communication instead of sitting in front of the computer all day. Putting this into words will inspire you to take action and look for a better job, for someone you know who might have a job like that. You could ask them if their company is hiring. If it is, you might ask them to help you get an interview. By whining and focusing on the bad, we are failing to see what could work.
We get stuck in a rut when we’re not being as creative as we can be. We get caught up in the story about how things should be, what we should get, and how to get it. We are victims of linear thinking. We fail to see new opportunities and solutions that could be created. Ask yourself how you can see your situation differently or what you can create out of it. This will spark your creativity. Rather than focusing on conflict, create a new conversation. Create trust by using problems and challenges. Pain is a powerful source of resilience and self-awareness and, paradoxically, opportunities are limited by your limitless creativity.
Do Something New
Robert Louis Stevenson said: “Don’t judge each day by the harvest you reap, but by the seeds that you plant.” We’re doing the exact opposite of that when we focus on our current hardships. We are making judgments based on the outcome, not the investment. The harvest is the result of what we have sown. If the harvest is not abundant, it’s because we didn’t plant good seeds or nurture them well. The seeds and harvest are a metaphor for doing something new. Launch a new project, clean your office, make dinner for a friend, or help someone. Do something nice that you haven’t done before. When we plant seeds every day, we’ll see them grow, expressed in the form of appreciation from other people or improved control over our own lives.
Still, all of these things might not help us in some cases. So…
What to Do When you’re Falling Apart?
The most important advice: go back to basics. Take care of yourself. A lot of people try to deal with problems by running away. Examples of ways we flee from pain include going out every night, getting drunk, travelling or shopping all the time, partying, binging, over-exercising, etc. Take it easy. Give yourself time to slow down, eat well, get enough sleep. It is tough, but we have lessons to learn, and the only way that can happen is by taking care of our health and giving ourselves time to think. Otherwise, we find ourselves in the same situation over and over again. To get out of this situation once and for all, you need patience and time. Nourish your mind and body. Avoid toxic, complaining, negative people.
There is Always Hope
Hard times will test our faith and attitude. It is at these times that we need hope most. Without hope, you are a disconnected array of feelings and thoughts without any sense of true purpose or meaning. If I could turn back time, I would tell my younger self to be more optimistic, thoughtful, and calm. I’d tell myself to be more creative and less persistent in linear thinking. Eventually, things will get back to normal. After disaster comes peace. In tough times, we can forget that everything passes. There is always hope, always light at the end of the tunnel. You will be fine. We are sure you will.
Dare to make a change, to take the leap into the unknown. The only constant in life is change. Our world is moving faster than ever, forcing rapid, frequent change upon us. It’s easy to interpret an unpleasant situation like: “I am such a loser, my life sucks” rather than: “I am not doing the right thing. To feel this bad means my approach is not working / making me miserable / keeping me stuck in a situation I don’t want to be in. I have to change it.” Paradoxically, most people want things to change without driving that change. We want different results, but we keep doing the same thing because it feels comfortable and familiar. When something didn’t work, our parents or teachers told us to work harder. They were wrong. We have to work smarter, not harder. Using the same approach and hoping for a different outcome is not only not going to work; it’s Einstein’s definition of stupidity.
Yes, it feels like all the world’s weight and burdens are on your shoulders. And let’s be honest. It can still seem like there’s nothing at all to be grateful for. Yet, make an effort and you’ll see there’s nothing farther from the truth. There is always a ray of hope even in the deepest and gloomiest abyss. We’ll end with 13 quotes to help you see the proverbial light at the end of the tunnel.
1. “We are all in the gutter, but some of us are looking at the stars.” ― Oscar Wilde
One of the greatest writers of all time said it best. He was a man with a melancholy streak, which you’d know by this quote, but the point is that you always have a choice between looking down into the gutter and up into the sky.
2. “Always remember that your present situation is not your final destination. The best is yet to come.”
You can move and change. If everything seems terrible and you’re at the end of your rope, the best thing to do is just move on. Change your path and set your sights on new horizons.
3. “IF YOU HAVE NOTHING TO BE GRATEFUL FOR, CHECK YOUR PULSE.”
Be grateful that you’re alive if you can’t find anything else to be grateful for. When everything goes wrong, gratitude is the last thing we can imagine expressing, and that’s understandable. When you’re alive, there’s always hope. You have the chance to make things better.
4. “When life is sweet, say thank you and celebrate. When life is bitter, say thank you and grow.”
Our universe is one of duality; pleasure and pain, joy and sorrow, light and darkness. We cannot know one without the other. When life gives you lemons, make it take them back.
5. “Look for something positive in every day, even if some days you have to look a little harder.”
Some days will be hard, but there’s always something positive to see. Make a habit of asking yourself, “What made me happy today?” at the end of each day. Don’t quit until you find an answer.
6. “Sometimes the bad things that happen in our lives put us directly on the path to the best things that will ever happen to us.”
See the good in the bad and realize much better things are in store. Use negative events as a way to help you learn, grow, and change your world view.
7. “LIFE DOES NOT HAVE TO BE PERFECT TO BE WONDERFUL.”
Everything has fallen apart, but there are still reasons to be happy. One reason is being alive. Having friends who’ll lend a helping hand, a family that loves you, a roof over your head, food on your table…these are never things we should take for granted. You’re fortunate if you have even one of these things.
8. “No matter how you feel – get up, dress up, show up and never give up.”
Don’t let life get you down. Let the hard times strengthen your resolve. Drive change, move forward, and keep your head up.
9. “You’re always one decision away from a totally different life.”
You’re not happy? Only you can change that. You have the means to transform your life into something wonderful, so don’t be discouraged by reality. Your attitude, perceptions, and thoughts can help you transcend reality.
10. “Overthinking will destroy your mood. Breathe and let go.”
Ah, the trap of an overactive mind. Too much mental focus isn’t a good thing. Clear your head and let the solution come naturally to you.
11. “You’ll never find a rainbow if you’re looking down.” ― Charlie Chaplin
Who can teach us about joy if not one of the greatest comedians of all time? Doesn’t it make sense?
12. “When nothing goes right, go left”
This is an easy and succulent way to express a tough prospect – in difficult times and situations, imagine yourself at a fork in the road. You can keep going the way you were going and hope for the situation to improve, or dare to take a new way.
13. “The older I get, the more I realise no one has any idea what they are doing and everyone is just pretending.”
Lots of people look like they “have it together” and we envy them. Do they really? Maybe they’re just better at not taking life too seriously?
We hope you enjoyed our “when everything goes wrong quotes” and feel better. People are quick to lecture, but know there is no “right” or “wrong” way to live. It’s different for different people. Above all, never forget that you’re not alone. We are all struggling. It is out of struggles that a strong, undefeatable character is born.