Tag Archives: internet

Distraction in the Modern World – Taryn the Dragon

Greetings to The Unsanity readers from Taryn The Dragon in South Africa. I work full time in the Data industry, study part time and blog on the side. I’m quite new to blogging and this is my first guest post. I’m super amped to have this opportunity. Thanks so much Koral Dawn.

dragonballWhat you need to know about me

I have depression and anxiety and a host of other chronic illnesses that have had a huge effect on my life. In 2019 I entered therapy to deal with all of the stress. I’m on a journey and I have had to take a deep look at myself and the world around me. There is an underlying theme that comes up often with mental health issues is that of mindfulness: Being conscious or aware and present in the moment.

Recently I have been watching videos that could help me become more in tune with myself. Observing people like Dr Gabor Mate, Alan Watt, Dandapani, in the hopes of understanding what mindfulness truly means. I know it sounds cliché but it has been quite a revelation. You can find my musings about this journey on http://www.dragonscodex.net.

Let’s talk about the world we live in

Adulting does not come with an instruction manual. Even great parenting does not quite prepare you for living in this golden age of technology. Information at the click of a button. Friends on WhatsApp (1 billion users) or WeChat (697 million users) or Facebook (1.59 billion users). Strangers on Twitter (320 million users) or Instagram (400 million users). Family just a Skype (300 million users) call away. [1] How do we actually get anything done? What I’m saying is that we now live for the thrill of ‘Distraction’. And this is why we need to cultivate a mind-set geared towards mindfulness.

How to move beyond distraction

Have you ever looked at your device and just thought “FFS ~ now what!?”. That’s a very good indication that you need to start practicing mindfulness for your own sanity. Let’s explore a few mindfulness concepts to aid you in your daily success.

Stop making excuses

Image by TeroVesalainen from Pixabay

Do what you say you are going to do. If that means going to the gym at 5am, do that without fail. You are building trust with yourself and in so doing gaining confidence in your decision making.

Control your awareness

Multi-tasking is great but it splits your focus and actually makes it harder to allot sufficient time to a specific endeavour. If you’re working on a proposal put the phone away and close your emails. The world will not fall apart if you give yourself 20 minutes to do something. Focus on this one thing. If your attention drifts bring it back to what you are doing.

Meditate

Image by CadreLuxe from Pixabay

No I don’t mean go assume the cross-legged sitting asana and chant endlessly, unless that’s your jam. I mean have some quiet time to get away from the noise. Be still, sit with your thoughts, have a nice cup of coffee. Be comfortable doing absolutely nothing and being alone.

Get clarity

Know what you want to achieve. Know how you are going to achieve it. The easiest way to do this is to make a list or keep a journal. And always note your achievements as they keep you on the path you want to travel.

Walk away from energy vampires

Ain’t nobody got time for this! To quote Dandapani: “Treat energy the same way you treat money. It’s a finite resource that needs to be wisely managed and invested.”

Uplift others

Image by Grae Dickason from Pixabay

When stuck in your own mind or even your own world where things are not quite going according to plan, do something for someone else without expecting any benefit in return. By uplifting others you uplift yourself. You’re present in a beautiful moment that will keep you going through difficult times.

Embrace change

All of these concepts require some effort on your part. It means you need come to terms with changing your life. As for me, it has helped me find this lovely Zen spot where there is less stress, more energy and more love. I’m really enjoying it this balance.

[1] Attribution for stats: https://makeawebsitehub.com/social-media-sites/

Travel Soothes My Anxiety – Connie Ferris

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Travel Soothes My Anxiety

Since I was a child I always knew that my mind worked in a more detrimental way than others. I would overthink even the smallest of situations. Forgetting my P.E. kit or not completing my homework would result in panic and on the rare occasion, tears. Not many people can understand anxiety unless they suffer from it themselves. However, when you finally understand your anxiety, certain events in your life begin to make sense. You understand why you acted that way and what may have triggered the anxiety. One good thing about educating yourself on your mental health is you begin to learn what is a trigger for your anxiety and what is good for your self care. For example, exams and judgement from people are big triggers for my anxiety, however travelling and seeing the world soothes my anxiety.

Like a lot of people who suffer from a bad mental health, I was diagnosed with anxiety and panic disorder when I was experiencing a big life event. I was in my second year at university and balancing university, work and a relationship all became too much for myself. However, when I started to learn about my condition and when I read online about other peoples experiences, I discovered that every individual is different and everyone finds different things triggering. For me, I have never experienced anxiety at an airport, train station, hostel, hotel or in a new city. However, for some people travel can be very stressful and just because I do not find travelling stressful this does not mean that someone else with anxiety who does is abnormal.

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Freedom

My anxiety for the most part stems from what other people think about me. When I’m travelling I feel like there are no expectations of me from anyone and therefore I cannot fail at anything. I can visit whichever attractions I like and/or I can spend a day just lounging at the beach. Everything I do is down to my discretion and so if I don’t feel up to doing something one day, then I don’t have to. This may not make sense to a lot of people as my anxiety is such a personal experience. Only I know what goes through my mind, after all.

Although I feel at home when I’m travelling, I can understand why travel can bring about anxieties in other people, especially when backpacking or long-term travelling. There’s the uncertainty of money running out and things becoming too expensive. There’s also the concern of running late for flights, trains, buses etc. Although these are perfectly valid reasons to feel uneasy or anxious, they do not faze me in the slightest. I know that I will be okay because the world is not as big as people think. Having some perspective on just how big the universe is, you’ll soon realise that you’re not that far away from home.

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Returning Home

Another reason as to why I do not feel anxious when travelling is because I always have in the back of my mind that if everything goes wrong then I can simply return home. My rule of thumb whenever I travel anywhere is that I always have emergency funds in a separate bank account that I do not touch unless I need to. The funds need to be sufficient enough to get a flight back home from wherever I may be. For example, if I were in the United States of America then I know a flight back to London will cost roughly between £500 – £1000 and so that is the amount I need to keep in my emergency fund.

It is also good to have an emergency fund in case you desperately are not ready to go home, you are running out of money but you have some work lined up, you just need a little to get you by until your first paycheck. This isn’t an ideal situation to be in as your emergency fund should only be for emergencies but as long as you remember to pay your emergency fund back then no harm no foul.

I Love to Travel

I could write about travel all day if I wanted to however the reason for writing this post was to explain why travel does not cause me anxiety. Primarily, I think the reason for this is because I love it so much. I think I would stop loving to travel if it did start to cause me anxiety simply through association. I hate anxiety and if it was connected to travelling in any way then I would also begin to dislike travelling. Fortunately for myself, I can continue to travel anxiety free for now and just enjoy every moment of my adventures.

Connie

Author Bio: Connie is a travel and lifestyle blogger over at www.earthtoconnie.com. She began her blog in 2018 and ever since she has slowly been making her way around the world. Discussing advice and tips for long term travel whilst sharing her own adventures, there is something on her blog for everyone.  You can also keep up to date with all her new content through her twitter, facebook and instagram.

Blogmas – Last Minute Stocking Stuffers

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Hello everyone and welcome to one of the last Unsanity #Blogmas posts for the 2019 season! I didn’t have the patience or time to write one blog per day, so I opted for 10-12 over the course of the month to give myself time to get them uploaded and scheduled.

I hope you’ve been enjoying them like I have been while writing them for you. There’s alot of good stuff in here, and it’s going to be hard not to want to duplicate some next year (yes, I plan to do it again! We’ll see how the year goes leading up to December haha.)

This post is all about Stocking Stuffers for you last minute shoppers who need small gifts for your co-workers or family/friends. All of these are under $10 USD too no less! (This is in no way an ad and I do not get any compensation for featuring these item’s on my blog whatsoever. These are items I have selected from personal interest.)

mad libs

Christmas Mad Libs to play with your family during the gathering.

sugar cookie

This caffeine free sugar cookie tea for the tea lovers to try during the cold winter months.

cherry bath bomb

Everybody loves surprises – give the gift of cherries and a surprise inside with this bath fizzer.

makers mark

Have a friend who loves Maker’s Mark? Get them this awesome sweater for their bottle you bought them for Christmas.

cake decorating

This Cake Decorating tip set from Baker’s Dozen should do the trick for the baking enthusiest in your friends group.

cremo

For the man in your life who shaves every day for work – this cream fights razor burn and nicks to keep him smooth.

salt scrub

Infused with Dead Sea Salts to give you younger smoother skin. Maybe stick with giving this to a friend vs a co-worker. They might get the wrong impression, lol.

unicorn slime

For the child on your list, or for a co-worker who needs something to occupy them on lunch.. this is the perfect fun gift to give!

Blogmas – Christmas Giveaway from Koral Dawn!

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Hello my Unsanity readers and friends. This year has had MANY ups down lefts and rights for myself and my loved ones. How did I cope? Through you guys and blogging mostly! Even if it was just networking and working with all of you to get your stories shared and published, you made it all happen. I want to thank you from the bottom of my heart and for attempting to keep me sane through the rough last half of this year. 2019 is definitely a year I won’t forget, that’s for sure. So let’s go out with a bang!

That being said, The Unsanity and Koral Dawn are doing it’s first ever giveaway for the holiday season!

***YOU MUST ENTER AT THE FOLLOWING LINK: CONTEST***

RULES & GUIDELINES:

  • The Unsanity contest starts December 12th and ends December 20th.
  • You MUST enter at the link above for your entries to count!
  • You must be following me on Twitter – this is a Twitter and blog post contest/giveaway.
  • Comment on this blog post with your favorite coping mechanism for your mental health – Yoga, Reading, Baking, a bath etc. I want to know what helps you!
  • This giveaway is open to the blogging community worldwide. 
  • Winner will receive the following: 1.) a Mindfulness Journal; 2.) Fineliner Pens for Journaling/Coloring; 3.) Let That Sh*t Go Activity Book.
  • Approx value of giveaway is $45, which includes shipping worldwide.
  • Winner will be announced and notified the morning after the contest has ended.
  • Return of items not accepted from winner.
  • Should winner chosen not be following, not have commented or tweeted the content, another winner will be selected at random.
  • Items will be sent out by Monday, December 23rd 2019.

Blogmas – Frugal Winter Date Night Ideas

MERRY BLOGMAS

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Winter is usually full of snow (depending where you live, if you’re in PA like us, it’s FULL of snow and staying in most times) and cold temperatures. With the holidays around the corner, and buying gifts for the family and others in your life, sometimes there’s less money in the budget for enjoying the things you and your significant other like to do to wind down.

Remember, not every thing needs to cost money to enjoy each other’s company, but you also want to be mindful that you need to keep your mental health in check during the stressful holiday season. Winding down with some cheap, easy and fun things to do with your S.O. when you can, will definitely help. What I’ve done is curated a list of 10 cheap and fun date ideas you can do during the cold winter nights.

  1. Play the board games you have! You can make it a fun competition with some sort of prize or where the loser needs to do the laundry for the week or clean the bathroom for a month.
  2. Go sledding. Sledding was the highlight of winter during our childhood, so hit the hills to go sledding again this winter. Sometimes all you need is a little rush to make you feel like a kid again or take away the stress for just a bit.
  3. Decorate your tree together. Either pick out a real tree or set up your fake tree together. Turn on the holiday music and get cozy as you prepare for Christmas the right way! Even putting up for decor outside can help decrease stress.
  4. Make/test cocktails for holiday parties. Google some recipes and put all those bottles that are sitting on your mini bar cart to good use. Test out the recipes and pick the best ones for the upcoming holiday party you’re hosting!
  5. Build a snowman. Get all bundled up and hit the yard to make a snowman or snow angels! Even if it’s only for a half an hour after work one day when you have a bit of time together, it will still bring back some nostalgia to your day.
  6. Go to trivia night. Test out your knowledge while drinking beer and cocktails. It’s a great way to have a competition with your partner and see who can come up as the winner of all!
  7. Make an indoor picnic. Some of you may like the cold and want to picnic outside, but if the temperature is -5 below zero, you may want to think of an alternative! Put a blanket in your living room or on your bed even and make some picnic food and enjoy an afternoon in!
  8. Cook food together. Cooking together can be fun, so long as you can agree on the meal. Once you pick a meal, grab a drink and enjoy each other’s time and learning a new recipe that will hopefully turn out great.
  9. Have a boozy snowball fight. Grab your flask or a bottle of wine to split and conjure up a snowball fight with forts and fight to the death (no, not really!) The more the merrier, see if any local friends want to come over and enjoy the snowball fight too.
  10. Go bowling. This one came to mind because my husband and I love bowling and we usually turn it into a friendly competition. Some alleys have drinks, apps and pizza that you can enjoy or even bowling packages for the winter months. Get out and have fun!

#FreebieFriday – Mid Quarter Progress Report for Teachers!

Readers, I have something different for you today regarding Freebies! I decided to make something for the teachers that follow me (I know there are a few of you!) Instead of a “report card”, I made a mid quarter progress report that you can print out to give to the parents of your children. I know report cards are regulated by the school system, and this is an easy way to let the parents and guardians know how their children are doing after a few weeks in classes to see what they may need to improve on to get that A or B in the class for the report card!

As always, visit my Freebie Page for the other free items I’ve posted the last few weeks and to download the high resolution copies of these.

Six Tips to Relieve School Stress – Just Call Me Jess

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The new school year is right around the corner and almost everyone is excited! Yes summer break is coming to an end, but the year will be filled with new opportunities to learn and make new friends…for most. For some, the new school year can be stressful! There is school supplies, new environment, new teachers/professors, stress if there is difficulty learning or reading and the list goes on!

Luckily, I have been there done that, when it comes to the stress associated with school. My anxiety would increase as the time got closer and would skyrocket the day before, “is my outfit right”, “what if I didn’t prepare enough”, “what if no one talks to me and I don’t make any friends”, and etc. As I would sit to take a test, I would begin to panic and often have to go outside of the classroom to catch my breath. Eventually, I began taking my classes outside and away from other classmates.

Stress is your body’s response to a challenge or demand. When you do not address the stress, it can begin to affect many aspects of your life, body and mind. Stress can often cause bodily effects such as headaches, insomnia, muscle tension, over eating or loss of appetite, and body aches. It can emotional cause you to have anxiety, lose focus, lack motivation, be easily frustrated or irritated, or even become depressed. When you are stressed you are more likely to use substances to cope, have angry outbursts, isolate yourself and have a decrease in participation in activities you once found pleasurable.

Throughout my experiences with stress, I learned many tips and tricks to decrease stress and rationalize my thoughts.

  1. Identify Your Stressor. If you walk into school/class and you begin to tense or you begin to have negative emotions identify where that comes from. Stressors can be anything and frankly that’s what makes them hard to identify. This is why it is important to have an effective self care and mindfulness routine so that you can identify your body’s responses to outside stimuli. Your body and mind will tell you that “this is not a safe place” or a “this is not comforting”.  Is it the subject, teacher or assignment you forgot to do? Once you identify the stressor it is easier to…
  2. Eliminate the Stressor. School can be a stressor in and of itself. The pressure to do well and achieve adequate grades will stress you out! Now add, family pressures, obligations, work, friends, relationships, bills, assignments, deadlines, extracurriculars…have I caused your heart rate to increase yet? Unfortunately some stressors we cannot eliminate but for the things we can impact, find alternatives.
  3. Breathing Techniques. I know, how cliche’! But seriously, taking slow breaths in and out will allow oxygen to get to the brain, your heart rate to slow and relaxes your body. Breathing in for 10 seconds, holding, and releasing for 10 seconds will allow you to make better decisions and become in tune with your body and what it needs.
  4. Exercise.The benefits of exercise are endless! Exercising is a mindfulness technique used to reduce stress, develop a healthy lifestyle and allow excess energy to be released. A simple 30 minute workout could reduce your stress and allow you to think clearly about decisions and what you need to do to have a successful day (this is why it is normally recommended in the mornings).
  5. Take A Mental Health Day. The brain is the most important organ in the body and yet we care for it the least. Stress can lead to many physical symptoms but also mental symptoms. I often see patients that have developed Anxiety Disorder or Major Depressive Disorder due to stress. How? If you continuously stress about your grades in school to the extent that you sacrifice your sleep or rarely eat you will get physically sick. You will also (eventually) burn out, lash out, fall out due to stress, lack of sleep and poor diet. Now there are no social supports, because you have isolated or pushed them away due to your emotional response to stress and you are not succeeding in school because you have burned out and fell out due to exhaustion. What is not advertised in school is taking time to care for your mental health. You will not give your best self if you are not caring for yourself.
  6. Seek Help. Speak to your teachers, counselor, family and friends about what is going on and how they can support you. I often suggest  individuals disclose their stressors to their support system in hopes that they can help combat them. If the stressor is one you cannot avoid, develop a plan with your support system so that they know how to be there for you during that time. If you need to be told to rest, eat, sleep, bathe, meditate, journal, listen to music, etc. let them know that. They cannot help you unless you tell them.

Good luck on your new school year! I know it will be everything you wish for and then some. Remember to implement these tips and stay positive!

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Hi I am Jessica, founder of Just Call Me Jess, a mental health blog that seeks to reduce stigma by normalizing the conversation surrounding it. I am a Licensed Master Level Social Worker with experience working with adults with severe, persistent mental illnesses and substance use.

Check out my blog for a FREE Weekly Self Care Calendar!

Follow me at www.twitter.com/just_jess_18 or www.pinterest.com/callmejess7

Taking Action Against our Negative Thoughts – Auburn Roe

 

Author Bio: As a born and bred London blogger, Lois is passionate about spreading positivity, talking about mental health and empowering other millennial to push boundaries in order to live their best lives.

Social Links:

www.auburnroe.com

www.instagram.com/auburnroe

www.facebook.com/auburnroe

www.twitter.com/auburnroe

There’s so much pressure in today’s society to be happy (thanks social media!) and it’s so normal for us to compare ourselves to others, whether we’re aware we’re doing so or not. When I first started university 3 years ago, I realized I wasn’t having as good a time as all my friends seemed to be having… fast forward 2 months and I was at the lowest point I’d ever been.

Now I’m not totally putting all the blame on social media – I should probably give some credit to the combination of a nasty relationship break up and moving to a completely different city 200 miles from home. I love social media (it’s part of what I do for a living so I kind of have to), but there’s no denying that it’s put a strain on how today’s younger generations view themselves and others.

After eventually realizing how something so innocent as seeing my friends having a good time on Instagram could be so damaging, I didn’t know what to do. There was no way I was just going to give it up (as addictive as it is, I wasn’t going to just throw away my way of connecting with the world), but I knew something needed to change.

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I decided to try to transform it into something slightly more positive by following people that would supposedly bring more value to my news feed. You know, the typical motivational speakers; the likes of Gary Vee etc. etc.

Eventually I found someone that changed the game for me.

Mel Robbins has a very ‘no bullsh*t’ attitude when it comes to self-development and loving yourself. She delves into the science behind why we feel the way we feel, and what we can do to counteract negative thoughts.

No ‘imagining a cheque for a million dollars’ or anything like that, just good old-fashioned FACTS.

Through Mel’s (completely free) online content, I started to understand why I was having such negative thoughts and that it was no wonder I was feeling as low as I was.

Once I’d got to the root of what Mel calls my ‘limiting beliefs’, I was able to use her golden nuggets of mental health wisdom to tackle my cynical thoughts, which included (but were by no means limited to):

  • Everyone secretly hates me
  • I’m not good enough to do the things I aspire to do
  • I’m going to look back on my life full of regret
  • I’m a selfish person

Now don’t get me wrong, it’s important to note that if you’re going through a seriously low patch to the point where you have no energy to do anything (I know I’ve been there), then all you can do is pretty much just ride it out. Wait for the storm to blow over.

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And when you notice the clouds slightly starting to dissipate, that is when you’ve got to take action on those toxic inner commentaries.

Somewhere along the timeline of our lives, we develop a DEFAULT way of thinking (usually from our childhood) and this default way of thinking takes the PHYSICAL FORM of neurons in our brain called the ‘Default Mode Network’. This forms our automatic thinking patterns, so by identifying when we think these thoughts, we can counteract them with something positive like “I am good enough”. This can help us to live and think deliberately (even if we don’t believe it at first), and eventually believe in ourselves enough to achieve our goals. Even just knowing that the only problem was what I believed, I knew that I could at least try to work to change that.

The next thing I learnt was this crazy thing I had never heard of called the RETICULAR ACTIVATING SYSTEM. Like, it even SOUNDS scientific. And that’s because it is. (Why do they not teach this sh*t in high school?!)

It’s the part of our brain that filters what you focus on.

Ever heard a song for the first time in ages and then suddenly you notice it playing on the radio every time you go to the supermarket?

Ever felt kind of low and then suddenly feel that everything in your life is an absolute disaster?

That’s because your Reticular Activating System is filtering in what you’re already thinking about. If our brain consciously registered everything we experienced, our heads would be so overloaded with information that we would probably spontaneously combust. So when we feel low, the fact that that person cut you off earlier whilst you were driving home from work can feel like the end of the world.

Taking action against our negative thoughts is the only way to achieve a calmer state of mind and in turn have a happier outlook on life in general. Yes, it takes a lot of discipline and you’ll realize how hard it is to force yourself out of your auto-pilot mode.

But if you’re serious about taking control, why not use social media as a useful resource to help you get to that place?

Since my low point 2 years ago, and even only really in the last 6 months I have:

  • started my own freelance business
  • won an award at university for my academic achievements
  • seen my goals manifest literally before my eyes

It’s crazy how far a little bit of education, self-belief and hard work can get you.

Knowledge is, for sure, power. And although platforms like Instagram and Twitter are full of toxic, useless garbage, the information that can help you change your life is out there. You’ve just got to find it.

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Getting Your Child Reading Ready for School – Elaine Gallagher

Today, I have a special guest post for back to school season from a good friend Elaine! While it’s a bit unrelated to mental health, which I try to focus on, Elaine wrote this for another blog, and it was never posted sadly, and I hate to see writing go to waste like this, especially with useful information! Elaine has written for me previously and you can see her post here if you are interested in seeing her other contribution to my blog.

Summer is the time of the year that we all look forward to as we count the last days of school. A break in the morning routines, rushing out the door, doing homework and squeezing in dinner time is on hold for a few months. It’s time to reconnect with your family and friends. But school is only on a break and we should remember that learning is a lifelong endeavor.

You often hear teachers and parents talk about the “summer slide”. That is the anticipation that children will drop up to two reading levels over the summer as they are no longer in the routine of reading every night. This is especially true of those in the lower grades who are just climbing to grade level.

As a parent, what can you do to prevent the summer slide?

Here are some suggestions:

Visit the library on some fun activity days (after the park or pool) and take a few books out. What is your child’s favorite author or genre? Encourage reading more books in a series or in a specific genre. Have your child look for books on their level to encourage reading confidently at that level and to keep their skills strong. Take turns reading the book together. Discuss what is happening in the book and make predictions and inferences whenever you can.

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Students should continue to log into their school’s reading website and continue accessing their individual reading records. Most schools will use these throughout the primary grades to monitor your child’s reading growth. You can also check out other fun sites for students to continue reading by visiting We Have Kids.

They can alternate between reading books from the library and using these websites. Look for YouTube videos of their favorite books and have them read aloud to them. Listening comprehension is important and having continuous discussions keeps children interested in books and stories.

Model reading wherever you go! Read in the grocery store. Read on the train. Read signs when driving in the car. Model reading directions or recipes you are following. Put closed captioning on TV to follow along while characters are speaking. When children see the importance of reading in everyday life and tasks, they will be more apt to keep their skills up.

Children practice what they see. When they see their parents reading and enjoying it, they are more apt to show an interest. Explain how you find books in your interest areas and encourage them to do the same. Have an area set up in your home where you keep your favorite books and magazines. Make it represent you. If you love the beach you can display some sea shells and pictures on your shelves alongside your books. Have a cozy chair nearby. Cuddle up in your reading area with your child to encourage parent and child bonding over reading time.

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Keep a reading log! If children keep a reading log required by school or just for them, they will be encouraged to have many books on their list. If there is a prize or recognition given at school for reading over the summer, keep encouraging them. Sign up for reading competitions at the local library or bookstore if available.

Work together with your child and encourage them to continue their reading growth and interest in reading. Make it clear how important reading is during their education and throughout their lives. Take a look at Child Mind for additional tips on keeping your child reading ready for a new school year.

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And above all, enjoy your summer vacation and the ease of relaxation which comes from a much needed break.

Elaine Gallagher is an elementary educator for over 20 years and a freelance writer. She
currently teaches 2nd Grade. She loves music, dance and reading. You can connect with her on Facebook (Elaine EMG), Instagram (@ellyelementary) and Pinterest (Elly  Elementary). Also, take a look at her two blogs: One on Education and one on Healthy Living.

3 Steps to Overcome Your Setbacks & Move Forward Confidently – Tyese Knight

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Hey everybody! My name is Tyese Knight. I am a mommy of 2 and a blogger at Strong Mom Sad Mom. I am passionate about helping moms with mental illness feel confident, strong, and empowered. I have struggled with anxiety most of my life and postpartum depression after the birth of my 2nd child. I am committed to breaking the stigma of mental illness by sharing my story to help others. Follow my journey on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, & Pinterest!

I have always been an ambitious dreamer. I set big goals and work hard to accomplish them. Sometimes my ideas work beautifully and sometimes I question why I even try!

In the race of life, we are bound to have setbacks, whether minor or major, that cause hiccups on the path to our goals. It can be challenging to rebound from these setbacks. Feelings of self-doubt, anger, guilt, or sadness can hold us back even more. Just because we have these feelings, it doesn’t mean that we should stop working towards our goals. Here are 3 steps to overcome setbacks and move forward confidently.

Step 1: Mourn Your Loss

So you messed up, screwed up, or just had some bad luck. Most people would say, “Don’t be sad about it.” I’m telling you now, go ahead and be sad or mad about it. It is okay not to be okay. We can’t be happy go lucky all the time!

Sometimes we just need to feel what we feel and get it out of our system. We are capable of experiencing a wide range of emotions for a reason. There is something we need to learn from those feelings.

If you need to bury your head under your comforter or veg out in front of the TV for a few days, go ahead and do it. Unpack your sadness and other negative feelings. Just don’t stay in that place permanently!

For the New Year, I made a goal for weight loss. As soon as January 1st hit, I was on it! I made better eating choices, started counting calories, and exercised daily. Unfortunately, after a weigh in at the end of the month, I was disappointed to discover that I did not lose a single pound. I was PISSED.

So I gave up…for a few days. Started eating my feelings and stopped waking up early to exercise. It was a pretty pathetic sight but I needed to be in that place for a while to lick my wounds.

Once you work out your feelings about your setback, you are in a better place to pick up the pieces and move on.

Step 2: Evaluate Your Missteps

This step requires you to figure out what happened to cause the setback. In other words, what could you have done better to prevent this from happening?

That means you need to put on your big girl panties (or big boy underwear) and admit that you may have played a part in your own setback. It might be hard to hear but if you really want your goals to work out, you have to take responsibility for your actions.

Sometimes we have our blinders on and we can’t see the situation from any perspective besides our own. It may be helpful to find a friend or colleague you trust to help you see it from a different point of view.

After my foiled attempt at losing weight, I whined about it on social media. Many of my friends chimed in, not just to give me support, but to give me advice based on their own experience with weight loss. I was able to get a new perspective, learn what I did wrong and gain new ideas for losing weight.

Step 3: Make a Plan to Improve

Now that you have felt all the feelings and discovered what you did wrong, it’s time to get back on track. Don’t wait too long to put your new plan into action. Now that you have some momentum, use it to your advantage.

Here are some questions you need to ask yourself as you prepare a new plan of attack:

  • Does your goal need adjusting?
  • Do you need more time to accomplish your goal?
  • What additional resources would help you?
  • What would you change about your approach this time around?
  • What or who can hold you accountable for your plan?

A final word of inspiration

You can do this! Don’t be anxious about trying again. Think about the courage it took for you to try to accomplish this goal the first time. Don’t let your setbacks hold you back!

I would love to hear how you are overcoming your setbacks and blasting through your goals like a boss! Drop me a line at tyese@strongmomsadmom.com to let me know how you have been inspired!