Read any newspaper, watch any TV, and it’s easy to be overwhelmed by the amount of bad news in the world: the pandemic, economic crises, global warming, diseases, war, and famines. Add all that suffering of the world to your own life stresses, and it might seem that all is hopeless.
But if you’re feeling that there’s no point even trying to be hopeful, think again. Hope is the big thing that will get you through. Hope builds compassion and energy to make things different. It gives you something to hang on to in the middle of life’s turmoil, and it’s something that just needs a little nurturing.
1. Stay In The Present
Instead of worrying about the future, learn to stay in the present moment. Don’t think about tomorrow or next week or next year. Worrying about future problems is pointless and drains your energy. Just put one foot in front of the other and do what you can today.
2. Practice Gratitude
Focus on what is good in your life right now. Think of three things that are good or that you’re grateful for. You can keep a daily gratitude journal, or develop a gratitude practice at bedtime or when you wake up.
Try to get into the habit of counting your blessings, the things that make you smile, and you will notice the effect on your self-esteem, your optimism, and your hope.
3. Get Some Perspective
When life looks grim, it’s tempting to think that it’s always been like this and always will. But take some time to remember the good times in the past and remember that good will come again. If you keep a journal, you can track your joys and sorrows and get a deeper perspective on your life.
As you look back over your life, you will see the ebbs and flows, the hard times and the good times. And that is part and parcel of being human.
4. Find Your Tribe
You don’t have to do this alone! Surround yourself with people who will lift you up, who will be there for you in good times and bad.
Studies have shown that people who have meaningful relationships are better able to navigate life stressors and crises. Their mental, emotional, and physical health is measurably better, and they even live longer!
When you find your tribe, your people, you feel safe and nurtured. You are loved and can love in return. And that sets the perfect conditions for hope.