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Life will not always go the way that we want it to. Many of us expect to breeze through life, having all the answers to any possible challenge, but unfortunately, that’s not going to happen. There will be days where it seems like nothing is working your way.
Most of us innocently believe that we have everything under control. We believe that we can stop bad things from happening if we try hard enough, do the right things, and do what is expected of us. We expect the universe to reward us for our good behavior. We build a fortress around ourselves with habits, possessions, and the people in our lives. They make us feel like we are in control because we sought them out and built them.
However, these things that we surround ourselves with are fleeting. When life does the opposite of what we expect and takes away these possessions, habits, and even people, most of us are unprepared to deal with it. It leaves us exposed to the truth that we are somewhat powerless and don’t have as much control over things as we thought. When you have experienced repeated setbacks in a row, it begins to feel like you are cursed with bad luck, and your life sucks.
We have all had days like that where life seems glum and chaotic. Everything seems so out of control, and you find yourself struggling to make sense of your situation. It is significantly worse now with the onset of a pandemic that no one has seen before. So on top of the usual challenges we face, there is also the risk of disease, illness, death, mental health issues, unemployment, bankruptcy, and so on.
Life will continue to suck because the challenges will keep coming, and you cannot avoid them or stop them. Not even if you had all the money, fame, fortune, or success in the world.
My Life Sucks – Why Is My Life So Bad?
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When you step out of your house, the first thing that bombards you is the number of people walking around with sullen faces. They don’t like their lives; they hate their jobs and dread slaving away at something they hate.
Human beings have strived to have better things throughout history – a better house, car, gadgets, and accessories. We feel like we need these things to measure up to the world’s standard or surpass them. We put ourselves through unnecessary pressure, even doing things that we do not like or approve of, just to outdo others.
But in this world, trends change as soon as they begin. You cough out a huge amount of money to get the latest hi-tech gadget, and less than six months in, there is a new and better one on the market that everyone is buying. Not to be left out, some people are driven to work longer hours to remain at the forefront of whatever trend is on the rise – the latest car, fashion, or gadget.
It’s no surprise that people end up dissatisfied with the quality of their lives when we put ourselves through daily hell. Behind the increasingly flashing lifestyle is an increasing amount of despair and dissatisfaction. We now have a huge deficit, and it’s not a financial one.
We are in the middle of a passion and purpose deficit crisis. When you ask people if they are doing what they love or happy with the quality of their lives, the answer at almost every turn is no. Most replies will have these answers and many other variants, “I hate my life; I’m sad with my life. Everything sucks.” “I don’t like my job; I only do it because I have no other option. There is no passion or motivation.” That’s because most people end up frustrated at being stuck living a daily life they do not want or like.
You feel that your life sucks now because you don’t have control over anything, not even the kind of work you do. We would love to be in control and make our choices based on what is right for us and what we really desire. That feeling of helplessness as everything spirals out of control and you have to fight extra hard to grasp onto one thing you want is why your life sucks and feels so bad.
Why Is Life So Cruel?
It does feel like life is conspiring against us. It keeps giving us things with one hand to snatch them back with the second once we have found happiness in it. People have lost their best friends and families to things that they struggle to make sense of. Some people cannot find a good job, and once they do, they find that they hate it. But they have no choice. They somehow have to try to accept their lot or keep fighting against powers they cannot see.
Think of it like this; you find a perfect, priceless, and one-of-a-kind ceramic vase that calls to you. You spend a lot to acquire it. Just when you are beginning to enjoy your purchase, someone comes from somewhere, grabs the vase, smashes it, and scatters the shards everywhere. Then tells you that you can restore the vase, but only if you find all the pieces that make the vase whole. There’s one catch the person didn’t tell you – each time you get close to finding a piece, they shift it till it’s just out of your reach.
The perfect vase is the perfect world that we somehow build for ourselves from childhood. Life is the person that comes in and shatters that perfect world. Then it gives you hope that if you can find all the pieces that made your life whole again, you can get your happiness back.
Each time it looks like you have finally found one, life keeps moving it just out of your reach. The constant upheaval and oscillation between hope and disappointment/despair will suck out whatever happiness you had managed to find for yourself. That’s the point where most people give up the chase and either turn away from finding the remaining pieces that make them whole again or turn away from life itself.
Life is cruel, no doubt. But is there a method to its madness? Is there a particular reason why we have to work so hard, experience so much pain and disappointment just to get what we want? When does it end? Has anyone ever won? Did they eventually find all of their pieces or learn to live with the ones they have?
Unfortunately, those are answers that we cannot give. Everyone, even those that seem to have accepted their fate, still hopes that one day they would be able to make sense of it all.
My Life Used to Be Better
One of the reasons why life sucks is that we struggle to accept change. We want to hold on to the past, to the moment where things appeared to be perfect. Unfortunately, you cannot hold on to something that has gone.
Here’s the thing, accepting the things that have happened and knowing that you cannot change them does not mean that you have accepted the way things are – that you are grateful for the pain and suffering that you currently experience.
Acceptance means that you acknowledge and challenge whatever you are experiencing head-on. It means to stop avoiding and running away from the pain. It means to stop holding on to a past that has gone and will never come back. It means looking forward to a future that is better than the past you lost.
5 Things to Do When Life Sucks
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Happiness and contentment do not come ready-made. It comes from your own actions. Despite what life throws at you at each turn, you have to choose to find happiness. Otherwise, you are never going to be satisfied with the kind of life you live.
“Happiness is when what you think, what you say, and what you do are in harmony.” – Mahatma Gandhi.
It is easy to sit down and bemoan your fate, “Oh! My life blows!” “My life is deteriorating. I’m really sad, and I don’t know what to do.” But that isn’t going to solve anything. You are not a victim of your own life. Irrespective of your current situation, you need to gain back control of your life and bounce back. That is what sets apart successful people from everyone else. They are willing to ask themselves difficult questions and find ways to make their lives less sucky. They are ready to do the hard work that most people will want to avoid.
Are you tired of the general suckiness of your life? Are you willing to do anything to get a better life? Are you ready to make decisions and take steps that will lead to a better place? Here is a list to give you an idea of what to do when life sucks.
1. Do what you love and develop happy habits.
The Japanese practice a concept called Ikigai, which means a life of purpose. They believe in finding happiness in your life by doing more of the things you love. Instead of focusing on the things that you have no control over, you can deliberate on the ones you do have control over. You have control over the things that can bring you happiness, purpose, and meaning; do more of them.
2. Practice mindfulness.
When things don’t go your way, it is normal to feel frustrated. However, learn how to process and deal with the emotions, so you don’t remain stuck in frustration. Take deep breaths and center yourself. It helps you gain a better perspective of what you need to do.
3. Use the hard times to flourish.
As easy as it is to hide from dealing with misfortune, it doesn’t do anything to help your situation. The key to moving on from your disappointment is to use your experience, whether good or bad, to grow into a better version of yourself.
4. Practice gratitude.
The best way to take your mind off the bad things happening in your life is to focus on the good things that do occur. You have good friends, a family that cares for you, a place to sleep at night, food – all of these are reasons to be grateful. Reframe your mind to stop focusing on negative thoughts and embrace positivity.
5. Let it out.
Keeping things to yourself, even when you know it is eating you up, will make your situation appear worse than it is. Don’t be afraid to reach out to someone you trust to tell them, “Hey, I am sad with my life. I want help please.” Share your problems with someone, so you can work out a plan to make your life better. Or, if you would prefer, you can journal your thoughts. Just don’t keep it bottled up.
Seek for Help
At the end of the day, there is only so much that self-help can do for you. If you have tried everything within your means to pull through but cannot, maybe it is time to hand it over to the professionals. If you still struggle to make sense of your life, when you find yourself thinking thoughts like “I gave up on life,” “I am lost in this world,” “I have a sadness in me,” please seek help.
Seek a Therapist
If you feel depressed or have suicidal thoughts, you’re not alone. Depression is a common mental disorder and the leading cause of disability worldwide. According to WHO, more than 264 million people worldwide suffer from depression. An estimated 16.2 million adults in the United States have at least one major depressive episode a year.
If you struggle with hopelessness, self-esteem issues, anger, sadness, and depression, get in contact with a therapist. Start with small steps. Attend the first session and see how it goes. If it does not work out or you feel like you don’t have chemistry with your therapist, no worries. You can always change the therapist until you find someone that makes you feel better.
If you have suicidal thoughts, search for a national “suicide hotline” in your country.
How to Find a Therapist Near You?
It is easy to find a therapist near you. Just pull up the Google search tab and type in “therapist near me,” and it will bring out results. It works better if you have the GPS location of your device turned on. Google can narrow down the search to therapists registered within your immediate vicinity.
However, since there is a coronavirus pandemic, it can be difficult to go to a therapist. In such cases, online/telehealth/virtual therapists are on the ground to offer help.
How Can I Find an Online Therapist?
Better Help is an online service that connects you to the best online therapist for your needs. It is the world’s largest e-counseling platform created to make professional counseling accessible, affordable, convenient – anyone who struggles with life’s challenges can get help anytime, anywhere. They offer access to licensed, trained, experienced, and accredited psychologists (Ph.D. / PsyD), marriage and family therapists (LMFT), clinical social workers (LCSW / LMSW), and board licensed professional counselors (LPC).
Use an App
If you struggle with emotional problems or would love to be more aware and mindful of your well-being and mood, use the MindDoc app. It has daily questions to help you check-in with yourself and see your progress. Download MindDoc for free to help guide your way to emotional well-being.
Find a Life Coach
If you need help creating a more meaningful and exciting future, get in touch with a Life Coach. Coaching is a process that is similar to traditional psychotherapy but differs in some key areas. Coaching primarily deals with issues of the present and is often found to be more practical and immediately helpful than traditional psychotherapeutic interventions.
A coaching engagement opens up a safe space where you can focus on personal and professional growth. You don’t need a coach, but you may decide it’s helpful to have one. Like with anything in life, professional guidance and support can help you move forward, feel more empowered, raise awareness and confidence.
A life coach can help you:
- Get specific on what you want from life and why.
- Become curious about your current and future self.
- Tweak your habits to get the best out of your day.
- Find a greater sense of purpose and meaning.
- Explore some of your existential questions.
- Find peace and quiet in uncertain times.
- Create your vision for a rich and meaningful future.
Why Spending Money for a Coach Is the Best Investment, You Can Make.
You may read blogs and self-help articles and doubt the usefulness of getting a life coach. After all, many of us will jump at a chance to save money while trying to figure out how to reach our goals ourselves.
You can try it on your own, but by oversharing on the internet, there is bound to be misinformation. You might eventually get it right, but that is after you make so many mistakes and waste a lot of time.
Wouldn’t you rather someone else did all that work for you and helped you get your desired results in a shorter time?
While you may think that you know yourself well enough to put together a plan that works for you, you cannot dispute the experience, skills, and knowledge that a good coach brings to the mix.
A coach will assess your limitations and abilities from an external view and provide suggestions to address, increase, or remove them. Skilled coaches will pinpoint your specific issues and significantly reduce the amount of time it will take to see successful changes. So getting a coach is a good investment for your money and time.
Meet Zack Young!
Zack Young is a certified coach in my team of health professionals and works with individuals to create lasting change, maximize potential & fulfillment, and develop impact through coaching.
Schedule a discovery session with Zack here
Zack is a Fellow of Coaching at McLean Hospital (Psychiatric affiliate of Harvard Medical School), Certified by Robbins-Madanes in Strategic Intervention Coaching, and has completed further education in Applied Psychology at Stanford University, with specialized courses in Psychotherapy and Neuro-linguistic Programming (NLP).
“Really good time to reflect and dig deeper into yourself. Zack will help you and guide you throughout this process. Good outcome and definitely good experience to have whether you’re lost in life or you need to polish a few thoughts.” — HADI, ABIDJAN (OCTOBER 2019)