How to end despair

By M.Farouk Radwan, MSc.

The moments of despair

I know how it feels like when everything seems to be going wrong.
No matter what you do to fix things everything just remains the same.
You look behind you and find nothing more than failures.
You look Forward and you expect more of the same bad things to keep happening.
You know you have to work your way through this but you just don't believe that anything will work.

This my friend is a typical moment of despair.
And the reason i am describing it well is that i have been there before.
Many times.

I know that right now you can hardly believe in any kind of good news without a solid proof and this is why in this article i am going to show you that there is a way out of this despair into a better life.

Getting stuck in the past

Your brain likes proofs. The bad things that happened to you yesterday and the days before provided a solid proof to yourself that things aren't going to get any better. But let me ask you a very important question.

Why did you assume that what happened yesterday will keep happening tomorrow?
Why did you make the assumption that the past will repeat itself?
And why are you so sure that tomorrow is going to be like today?

Now let me answer this for you.
Because you are doing the same actions that you used to do in the past and because you will keep doing the same things over and over your mind had to conclude that the future will be like the past. See What causes backward thinking

What you need the most during such a moment is one thing.
Deciding that you are going to do things differently.

Do you know how emotions work?
Your brain makes some conclusions about some events and then emotions kick in based on those conclusions.
Every time your brain sees you doing the same exact things over and over it concludes that the same results are going to be obtained and this is why your feelings of despair never change.

In my book The 5 Minute Happiness Formula i said that instant happiness is 100% possible provided that you learn how to let your brain make different conclusions about things.

And as you might have already guessed this can only happen by taking different kinds of actions than the ones you have been taking in the past.

How to end despair

So let's make this into an action plan.

  • 1) Know that the past doesn't represent the future: Don't become a backward thinker and don't get stuck in the past. Yes the past was bad i know but this doesn't mean at all that what's coming is going to be the same.
  • 2) Take different actions: Do anything differently, try something you haven't tried before or try a different strategy. Whatever you are going to do on that new day make sure it's nothing like what you have done yesterday. See How to come up with creative ideas
  • 3) Move fast: The more you remain doing nothing the more will the bad feelings persist. The faster you move the faster will those bad feelings go away. And remember all what you need to end those bad feelings is hope. By doing actions that can bring hope again you will feel better before you even solve any of your problems. The psychology of loss of hope
  • 4) Learn to took at possibilities: Yes i know that you are in a bad situation right now but this doesn't mean that there aren't any opportunities. When we become trapped in our negative thoughts we fail to see the good opportunities we might be having. Learn how to scan your environment for opportunities because once you see the right one your life can be changed.

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