editorNadia replied over 1 year ago:
That's a really tough question and I think a lot of people are still trying to find that answer. Often, when we feel stuck in ourselves, we can let negative thoughts about ourselves or the people around us get the best of us. The first step is just to acknowledge that you are in pain and let it be there. It's so easy to try to push those feelings away or get down on ourselves for having them at all, but they're legit and they're yours, so embrace them. The next step is to figure out what stories you might be telling yourself. Sometimes we say things to ourselves like, "I'm no good at all" or "The world is out to get me and I just cannot get ahead" or "Everyone else has it better than me." We might not even be aware that we're having these thoughts, but when we look deeper, beliefs like that are often at the root of a lot of our bad feelings. When you notice those thoughts, challenge them. Look for one example where that belief might not be entirely true, and let that open the door to new interpretations. In the end, so much of how we experience our world is in our heads, which is frustrating and empowering at the same time. Once you learn to challenge your beliefs, you can start to replace them with more positive or flexible beliefs instead. Finally, meditation or mindfulness can help bring us into the moment so we don't go down the rabbit hole with negative thoughts. To start your own practice, choose a mantra like "I am a kind, strong person worthy of love and acceptance"--something positive that resonates with you--and focus your thoughts by repeating that to yourself (in your head or out loud) in a quiet space for 5 minutes a day. If you notice your thoughts straying, just let the distracting thought go and refocus on the mantra. Healing is a process, but it is absolutely possible. Please feel free to follow up if you want clarification on any of this or have more specific questions.