That constant state of feeling overwhelmed is exhausting. Looking at your friends, family, and even strangers on social media, seeing that they have it all, and feeling like you have nothing, leaves you feeling alone and unworthy. You may even question why others seem to have things figured out, while your still stuck making the same mistakes over and over again, despite wanting something different. Something better.
Don’t Let The Despair Get The Best Of You
When you live your life filled with despair, thinking nothing will change, it affects your ability to find happiness and contentment in your life. As you look around at others you feel a sense of loss as if you’re missing out on something. Whether it’s marriage, kids, a beautiful home, or the expat life you are currently not where you want to be in life and you can’t imagine how you can attain your dream.
When you’re filled with despair it breeds hopelessness. It becomes a self fulfilling prophecy that you remain stuck and unhappy. After a while you begin to isolate yourself as you feel more anxious and depressed. Not wanting to “bother” your loved ones with your feelings, you suffer in silence and continue down your dark path alone.
For a recent client this feeling of hopelessness played out in her inability to act upon the goals she set for herself. In fact, she begin to even loose sight of her goals as she felt like she was drowning in her day to day negative experiences. She was stuck in her head and often got in her own way. The cycle of self sabotage became the new normal for her. In a sense she lost a part of who she was.
At the time she felt like she couldn’t get out of her own way. She felt so depressed and anxious that she was unable to tackle her goals, let alone create new goals that would be used to jumpstart activity.
Unfortunately all this did for her was make her want to give up. To accept less than she deserved because it was easy to do…to fall back on the safety net of having her family take care of her.
It is true that it’s a lot easier to take the easy road. To defer your dreams for the safety of what you have right now, even if what you have right now leaves you frustrated, unfulfilled, and unhappy. Safety feels comfortable. It breeds stability and security, and these are primal needs. However, when you see others overcome something similar, it can inspire you to make the changes you need to achieve your own goals and make your dreams come true. When you take similar steps it is entirely possible to move from that place of discomfort and instability to a place of feeling happy and secure.
When Your Feeling Like Your Life Is A Mess, Then You Feel Hopeless
It can be a tough thing to reach out and ask for help when you need it. This can be especially hard when you are not even sure what you need help with. Before she scheduled her first session, this client described her life as a mess. She felt so overwhelmed and caught up in her sadness and hopelessness that she spent most of her time alone, in bed. She found herself nearly on the verge of tears every day and just wanted more but couldn’t figure out how to get what she wanted. Again she felt like she didn’t deserve to make her dreams come true. Living this way impacted her relationships because she felt less than. It impacted her work because she felt like she was wasn’t good enough.
She finally reached her breaking point and had enough of living like this when she stumbled upon her old journals and discovered that old hopeful part of herself. She reflected upon her life and what she wanted. She decided she could either continue down this path and remain miserable or she could put her needs first and make changes. She knew she couldn’t do it on her own and once she realized this part she felt more empowered. She decided to try therapy to help her stop self sabotaging.
During the first session she was able to talk about what she wanted in life. She had what she thought were big dreams and she wanted to make them happen at all costs. As we broke down these dreams and the steps required to make them happen, she came to realize that part of her self sabotaging was the idea that her dreams were “big”. As in out of the realm of possibilities when really they weren’t “big” at all. We were able to change the frame and language around creating her ideal life, replacing words that felt more authentic to her and her journey. By the end of the first session she felt more hopeful than she had in a long time.
As we continued with therapy she knew that she wanted help with organization and breaking her goals up into small actionable steps. She also knew that she needed a way to measure the progress she was making on her goals and to create a timeline to achieve them by. She also realized that she needed an accountability partner. Someone who had been through something similar who could help her by supporting her when she faced self doubt. This person would be available to help her stay on track.
The treatment plan she and I collaborated on addressed all aspects of what she wanted to accomplish and targeted language to help her be mindful of her triggers, which could send her on a downward spiral down to hopelessness.
How Therapy Can Help You Get Out The Funk
When she and I first sat down to work together it was hard for her. She had been stuck for so long she was unable to articulate what she needed. Much of the time she was struggling due to her own perfectionism and wanting things to be a certain way but she didn’t have the tools to make it happen. We often discussed the stories she told about herself and how these negative beliefs got in her way. Every week she attended therapy and she would do the mini homework assignments, which she realized really increased her organization skills and helped her stay on track. She began to feel more hopeful about her future as she began to tick things off her goal list.
The treatment plan we collaborated on outlined a way to measure improvements, which included actionable steps, as well as feelings that would come up and how she faced them (did they hold her back or propel her forward). She said she knew things were getting better because she felt different and she was starting to see little glimpses of the grand future she always desired. She felt strong, happy, empowered, and connected to others.
When I practice with clients I really like to dig deep into the stories they tell themselves and help them understand where these stories come from in order to help them change the narrative. I come from an attachment perspective which focuses on our relationship and really getting to know the client individually. I am there supporter who challenges them in a gentle and humorous way. I meet you where you are, however you, with unconditional support and no judgement. Evidence shows that this helps clients to tear back the layers of mask and wall and really open up in order to come back a new with news skills and beliefs.
After several weeks of therapy it was obvious that she was on her way to making her dreams come true. This client saw improvements in all aspects of her life and the hope she hadn’t felt in years was back. She was feeling good and positive about life. This showed in her work and in her relationships with loved ones. She no longer isolated herself, questioning her value and worth. She laughed more freely and shared more openly. She no longer felt overwhelmed, even when she had set backs. She used these setbacks to propel her forward.
She knew it was time to end therapy when she felt she could handle things on her own. She grew her support network and continued using her calendar to stay organized. At our final session she felt happy and hopeful.
Your Dreams Can Come True
Although you struggle with hopelessness and despair you have the potential to be free from these negative emotions and find joy, peace, and hope in your own life. Whether it’s making your dreams come true, finding love or a dream job you deserve good things in life.
Now that you’ve seen that is possible for others, there is a possibility for you to also feel confident and hopeful.
Achieving your goals and making your dreams come true is a wonderful feeling that can absolutely happen for you. It takes working smart, checking your self doubt, and feeling hopeful about your future. If you are struggling trying to make your dreams come true then
The Jlang Therapy & Consulting can help you create the life you want and deserve. So contact me to schedule your first session to get you started on the right path.
If you’re a fan of blogs like this please share with your friends and of course you can subscribe to stay up to date on the latest and greatest from me.