Living in the Now
One of the biggest causes of unhappiness and discontent is the inability to let go of things that went wrong in the past. Living in the now is not some kind of hippie-wannabe-Zen concept, it’s an absolute necessity for conquering your goals and becoming the person you want to be. In my third year of university I had a breakdown that was so different from any anxiety attack or obsession over my future I had had in the past that I stayed home from school in bed for a week and a half. Setting aside any personal learning disabilities or anxiety problems I may have been dealing with at the time, there were three key issues that contributed to this depressive state that many may relate to:
Build self-esteem and confidence.
I was not confident in myself and spent too much time comparing my success and patterns with other peoples; this lead to poor work and exam performance. One of the most crippling things you can do is to compare yourself to someone else. Avoid vices that appear to give you confidence, because that is temporary and misleading.
You are not controlled by your past, you are propelled by it.
Don’t forget the past. We learn from our mistakes, and recalling how you handled things in the past can help you approach the present in more productive, lucrative and healthy ways.
Build resiliency by learning to cope well with problems.
How have you handled problems in the past? If your reaction was to crawl into bed and not leave for days, get out and go for a walk. Watch a movie that inspires you, listen to a soundtrack that builds you up, and take time to spend with nature. Being overwhelmed by workloads can perpetuate a constant feeling of ugliness. As silly as it may sound, go outside and drink in the beauty of your surroundings. Remind yourself that your problems are fleeting and there will always be new ones, so take a minute to appreciate something beautiful and live in that moment. Learn to brush off the right things, and confront other things head on with a goal to problem solve.