If there was every a time to wonder how to stay optimistic during a tough time, it’s NOW. We are all facing more challenges than we ever thought possible. Social distancing, self-quarantine, homeschool, personal battles of Covid-19, mourning the loss of family members and friends…. the list goes on and on.
Since I am experiencing my own emotional struggles after testing positive for Coronavirus, I’ve been looking for ways to stay optimistic. In addition to the diagnosis taking a toll on my mental health, the fact that I’ve been quarantined in my home for three weeks doesn’t help. Whenever the sun comes out, I make a point to sit in my backyard. The Vitamin D helps a bit, lifting and energizing my spirits. However, I need MORE than just natural sunlight to stay out of the darkness of depression.
Music, family/friends, nature, yoga, my cat, and laughter are some of the ways I stay optimistic during a tough time. Looking for more specific ways? Check this out.
How to Stay Optimistic During a Tough Time
- Don’t play VICTIM – it’s a harsh reality when you’re actually suffering from the virus that’s ruining our normal lives. However, it’s a waste of energy to harbor feelings of resentment and bitterness over something that’s out of my control.
- Meditate – it’s pretty wild how much power can be found in breathing meditation. When I’ve been in my darkest place during this pandemic, I focus on what I can control – which is my breath. I love to use the Stop, Breathe, & Think app.
- Make a list of POSITIVES – Sometimes all it takes for me to turn my frown upside down is by making a list of positives in my life. Even though I’ve been sick for what feels like an eternity, my family has been healthy. THAT is something to smile about.
- Give Thanks – Things can always be worse, right? Give thanks for the positives in your life. Focusing on what you have is better than looking at what you’ve lost. Practice GRATITUDE!
- Limit Bad News Intake – UNPLUG and stay away social media and news websites! Being constantly fed with sad news will only add to your negative mood.
- Find the happy people – Surround yourself with positive people, especially those that like to laugh! If you know someone going through the same thing, talk to them about your feelings, but pass along good vibes only.
- Exercise – Nothing like good ole endorphins to improve your mood, sharpen your focus, and increase your energy. Go for a walk or run, find a workout class online, or just turn on some good ole rap music and DANCE! If you’re sick, try a ten minute stretching or easy yoga flow session.
- LAUGH – I try to laugh as much as possible each day even if it is at my own expense. One minute of laughter can make you forget about the sadness or hard time you’re currently facing.
“A good laugh overcomes more difficulties and dissipates more dark clouds than any other one thing.” ~Laura Ingalls Wilder
Songs to Make You Smile
Research suggest music can activate your body’s feel good chemicals, like endorphins and oxytocin (source). Here are some of my favorites songs that instantly lift my mood. P.S. These work for me, but may not work for you.
- “Dreams” by Fleetwood Mac
- “Wanna Dance with Somebody” by Whitney Houston
- “Someday” by Mariah Carey
- “You Gotta Be” by Des’ree
- “Slide” by Goo Goo Dolls
- “#41” by Dave Matthews Band
- “Ants Marching” by Dave Matthews Band
- “Gypsy” by Fleetwood Mac