With the changing of the seasons, and life’s curve balls, sometimes its easy to feel defeated. Perhaps, you haven’t even realized it’s gotten that bad, but you know something is just “off.” This happens to everyone. Don’t feel bad. Don’t think you’re alone. In fact, feeling alone and like no one can relate is part of the scary cycle of psychological defeat.
When you’re feeling a little down, it’s important to do a systems check. Why are you feeling down? Is it temporary? Is it situational? Is it financial? Relational? Or, has it been building for some time? It’s really important to figure out exactly what’s going on with yourself before going through the process of overcoming defeat. If you don’t do a systems check, there’s a good chance you won’t really do the work necessary to overcome defeat altogether.
Step 1 – Feel your Feelings
It’s totally reasonable to feel all the feelings you have. It’s actually quite normal. You shouldn’t rush through them, think they’re a sign of weakness, or pretend like they don’t exist. Quite the contrary. You should feel them. All of them. Journal about them. Call your mom, friend, or therapist and talk about them.
Feeling you feelings is part of your journey. It’s part of what makes you who you are. Without feelings, we’re all just going through the motions in a passionless way. That doesn’t sound super fulfilling. But, I’m not talking about just your “feelings of defeat.” I’m saying you should feel your positive feels too; confidence, admiration, joy-filled, successful, etc. If you don’t feel them now, that’s okay too. Journal about a time you did feel those feelings. What was life like then? What do you think would bring you some of those happy feelings in the future?
Step 2 – Set a Deadline
Feelings of defeat tend to come from a sense of fear or “being stuck” like things won’t ever get better. This is also known as despair. The good news is, you have control (yes, you really do) over this. So, set a deadline for yourself. It could look something like “Okay, I’m going to journal for an hour, chat with my friend on the phone, or text my parents, but then, at 10:00 AM, I’m fixing my crown, and I’m going to work.”
You can deal with your emotions in a compartmentalized way. One day at a time. But, that deadline is really important so you don’t allow the stress, fear, and feeling of defeat to creep into the rest of your day / life.
Step 3 – Find your Purpose
Feeling defeated tends to stem from a feeling of lacking true purpose. Like, “Why even bother going to work, dealing with my family problems, or reviewing my finances.” Hopefully, you can take a logical step back and realize that those things your feeling defeated over aren’t your real purpose. So, you need to find it.
There are simple steps to finding your purpose. First, you’re going to want to grab a notebook or journal. There’s about to be some work.
- Take a “passion finders test”
- Think about the periods of your life that had the most joy. What was special about them?
- Create a life purpose statement
- Listen to your heart/soul
- Share it with a trusted friend
- Understand where everything you do fits into your purpose.
Step 4 – Leverage your Network
Loneliness is a terrible feeling, in general. And when you’re feeling defeated, it’s easier than ever to feel alone. The good news is that you have lots of friends, contacts, family, resources, that you can rely on. This might be daunting. Sure. But it’s necessary.
Don’t fall victiim to the “no one wants to hear my problems” mentality. If you truly don’t feel like you have any solid friends, contact a therapist. We’d love to help you work through some of these feelings.
Step 5 – Remember that you aren’t finished
Life is likely teaching you a lesson. It might not be obvious exactly what the lesson is, but there’s a lesson to learn. So, remember that how you are today, what you’re thinking about, what your priorities are, and what you’re looking forward to, isn’t done being developed. You’re growing! When you remember that you aren’t finished, you can smile easier and have some grace for yourself. You’re growing.
If you’re being treated poorly, in a bad relationship, fighting with your boss constantly, or not being accepted by your friends, that’s okay too. You might not fit everyone’s mold for who they want you to be. Don’t try to be all things to all people. You’re gonna get tired. You should, instead, be authentically and unapologetically you. YOU! And, if you frustrate some people, maybe they don’t realize you aren’t finished.
Step 6 – Failure breeds transitions and beauty
When you accept that perhaps you have actually “failed,” you allow yourself to move on. It quite literally allows you, your dreams, your ambitions, and your future to unfold. It’s a beautiful process. The key to this step, however, is that “failure” isn’t a destination. Neither is defeat. Sure, you may have messed up. You may have let someone down. You may have not finished a project on time. But, life goes on. Don’t allow that setback to bring down your dreams.
More often than not, we tend to learn more from our periods of defeat and life’s “failures,” when we put that into the correct frame of reference. It’s temporary. Life goes on. I tried. I learned. And I’m better for having that experience.
Your future is going to be so bright. No matter what you may be dealing with right now, you have the ability to go through these 6 steps, feel better, and have a great life! Need more help? Contact us today.