Everyone feels at a loss every once in a while, especially when big things happen or big decisions have to be made. I‘m sure that I am not the only one that has been feeling particularly lost during this lockdown. Being forced to stay at home with little to no human interaction, limited time outside and most places being closed, we are bound to feel like we are going crazy. When I finished my uni hand-ins for this semester, after 2 days of relaxing and thinking how nice it is to have nothing to do, I started feeling like I was losing myself.
How are you supposed to stay sane and move towards your goals when everything that you normally do, everything that defines you, can’t be done? It’s in times like these that it is especially important for you to reflect on yourself and on your life, figure out what you really want and what you should probably stop spending your precious energy on. Here is a list of things that I have found helpful during this lockdown when I’m feeling lost or overwhelmed. I hope that these will help you too.
Writing down how we feel and what we are thinking is a way to put these intangible things into words. I find that oftentimes, it isn’t until I literally spell something out on paper that I understand what I am actually feeling inside. It is also a way for your thoughts to stop racing. If you have too many thoughts on your mind that all just jump out at you at the same time, journaling will allow your mind to focus on one thought long enough to write it down. And most of the time, writing out and thinking about that one thought will allow you to spend more time on it and get to the root of it – or at least to figure out how exactly it is that you feel.
Chat to someone
Similar to journaling, talking to someone – whether that be a friend, a colleague, a sibling or a counsellor – can help you make sense of your thoughts. In this case though, you are likely to get an answer back. Speak to someone that knows you and that you trust. They will be able to either give you some advice or just ask you questions that will help you further understand your thoughts. It also helps you feel less alone in a situation that can be overwhelming and scary. They can also give you a hug, which no one will take for granted anymore once this lockdown is over!
Take a break (from thinking)
Thinking is good; overthinking not so much. When we feel at a loss, our mind tends to be going at a 100 miles per hour. This can quickly become overwhelming. So it’s important to take a break every so often, to allow your body, but also your mind, to pause. This can be done in many different ways, whether that be meditation, calling someone you love, having your favourite cuppa, cuddling your pet, listening to your favourite music or going for a walk. For me, painting-by-numbers is one of the only ways to effectively pause my thoughts and just focus on the task at hand.
Do small things that make you happy
People always say that it is the small things that matter, and they’re right. Imagine you’re having a bad day but at some point, a stranger gives you a genuine smile. You instantly feel a bit lighter and better, all thanks to a small smile. So when you are feeling down and lost, focus on doing small things that you enjoy, such as – see what is mentioned above and – reading a book you love, watching your favourite YouTuber, putting on a movie, playing an instrument, knitting… The list is endless.
If you want to take this a step further, write these things down on small pieces of paper and put them into a jar. Then, whenever you need a pick-me-up, you can take one – or multiple – out of your “happy jar” and do something that will help you feel a little better.
Listen to a (motivational) podcast
I love podcasts. There are so many kinds and themes to choose from today that you are bound to find one you enjoy. I have recently started listening to one every morning and it has honestly made a difference. They’re also really easy to listen to because you can play them while you’re cleaning or driving or walking or whatever else you might be doing.
Create a vision (board)
Vision boards have been around for a while now, and that’s because they work. Don’t ask me how, but creating a vision of what we want and where we want to be helps us get these things. I made a vision board last year when I was having a hard time and looking back on it now, almost everything has happened – or is in the process of happening. It is extremely helpful when you are feeling lost because it will force you to ask yourself questions and let your innermost desires come to the surface. Remember, there are no limits to your visions, everything is possible. Imagining your dream life – or just some realistic goals you would like to achieve – is also a great way of getting you into a better headspace. And quite frankly, vision boards are fun to make!
Listen to music
Music is very powerful and can impact our mood drastically. So if you’re feeling lost and overwhelmed, put on your favourite, uplifting music and you will start feeling better in no time. Oftentimes when we are sad, we listen to sad songs to make us even more miserable – kind of defeats the purpose, eh? We’re all guilty of this, but next time you’re feeling down, try playing happy, upbeat music that make you want to sing and dance. And while we are at it, let loose and have a dance or grab your hairbrush and pretend you’re Beyoncé – guys can also do this, no judgement here! If you need some inspiration, check out my music recommendations.
Get some fresh air
Fresh air is incredible for your wellbeing. Just opening your windows and filling your lungs with fresh air will instantly make you feel refreshed and energised. It can also help you clear and slow down your mind. Make sure you open your window or sit outside often to make sure you get all the fresh air your body needs.
Move your body
Being physically active is very good for you, and for your mind. Focusing on different exercises, on pushing through the effort, will help your mind take a break and not let thoughts overwhelm you as much. Bonus points if you listen to a podcast or your favourite music while you walk, run, dance, work out, swim, climb, hike, do pilates or yoga.
You will not feel like this forever
Trust me. And more importantly: trust yourself.
So here we are, another blog post finished. If you are enjoying these, follow me on Instagram (@relatablesunday) and share this blog with your friends and family! We could all use some advice every once in a while. I hope that these tips were helpful to you if you are currently feeling a bit lost. Remember that this isn’t going to go on forever. Don’t hesitate to email me or message me on Instagram if you ever want to have a chat. I hope you are doing well and staying safe, and I look forward to seeing you next Sunday!