10 Things To Know When Things Go Wrong

photo credit: Lenny Flank via photopin cc

No matter how hard we try in life, we will all find ourselves in this place- many, many times. The bottom will drop out from under us. We will fail. The sh*t will hit the fan. Things will get real. And we will be left in a daze with nothing to do but pick up the pieces.

It doesn’t matter how many times we’ve found ourselves in this pit before. We will find ourselves here again. Therefore, each of us needs to cultivate a routine for coping and adapting with challenges. Here are the 10 things I believe everyone should keep in mind during tough times.

1. Let yourself feel your feelings. This one is the hardest, yet it is also the most important. If you let yourself feel your negative feelings, they will eventually pass. If you suppress them, they will linger in your body, where they may fester and cause you more physical and mental woes later.

2. Let yourself take a break. There are times where it might not be plausible to allow yourself to work through your negativity as soon as it arises. That’s okay. When you have time to be alone, give yourself some space to relax and express your feelings to a journal. Or process it with a friend, if that’s more your style.

Along the same vein- don’t make any decisions right away. Wait a few more days until you are more clear-headed, or else you might do something you regret. It might not seem like it now, but the feelings will pass.

3. Remember that you aren’t the only one! When we screw up, we are so quick to assume that no one else could have possibly made the same mistake we did, and as a result, we beat ourselves up over it. That is an incredibly unrealistic assumption! Because of the omnipresence of social media, we are often comparing ourselves to other people . . . or rather, the photoshopped images that we have of other people in our minds. But, we must remember, that most often, people only use social media to display their good news. They aren’t going to go public about their screw ups, unless they’re looking for advice.

Talk to other people that you trust. It is very likely you’ll find someone who has been in a comparable situation.

4. Don’t take it personally. It didn’t happen because God and the universe are out to get you. It didn’t happen to you because you are a bad person, and it didn’t happen because you are cursed.Whatever it is happened because hard times are a fact of life for everyone.

5. Seek perspective. Is it really as big of a deal as you are making it out to be? Again, I find it really helpful to talk to a friend. Many times I have thought I was a total loser who ruined her future, and they have been able to show me where maybe I or someone else was overreacting.

6.  Speak kindly to yourself. Talk to yourself the way you would to a friend who is experiencing the same circumstances. Being harsh with yourself will only make you feel worse.

Good advice from http://www.mindful.org

7.  Participate in your self care activities. To gain your energy back and to lift your spirits up, you will have to rest. Participate in whatever activities rejuvenate you. For me, this includes yoga, meditation, journaling, singing, spending time in nature, and drawing mandalas. For you, it may be one of these things, or something else.

8. Can you learn from it? Now that you’ve let yourself feel and process your feelings, it is time to move on. What’s done is done. You can’t change it, but perhaps you can grow from it. Is there anything you could have done differently? Something you’ve learned so that you won’t repeat the situation again? Take note of all these things.

9.  Determine your action steps. Where would you like to be in a few days? In a month? What will it take to get there? Make a list of these (bite-size) steps, and then start doing them!

10. Seek positivity. Moving on is going to be challenging. Surround yourself with supportive people. Watch shows that make you laugh. I like to print out inspirational slogans and hang them in places where I will see them often. (This includes in my car, on the mirror, by my desk, by the front door, as my laptop and iPhone wallpapers . . .)

The important thing to remember is that although suffering is inevitable, it is also temporary. If you play your cards right, you can find the rainbow on the other side.

Suggested watching: MarieTV: How to stay positive

Love and light,


2 thoughts on “10 Things To Know When Things Go Wrong

  1. Andie Coccia

    Hi Mary: When things go wrong, should I accept them [events, people, actions] as negative? When someone has been negative toward me, should I afford them a second chance? Do you believe in second chances? People (and generic attitudes) change, or do they? When you are in a negative situation that has happened a long time ago, how do you respond to it in the present? I would love your insight on this.


  2. marylangmt

    Hi Andie, you have asked quite a few questions, and I’m wondering if they all pertain to a particular situation you are thinking about. I can’t give you targeted advice without knowing much about your situation, but I’ll do my best to answer your questions.

    First you asked, “when things go wrong, should I accept them as negative?” I would like to direct you to the graphic that is about 2/3 of the way down the post. It says, “this is a moment of suffering. Suffering is a part of life.” And so on. What I’m saying is, trying to pretend that everything is fine and okay when you’re feeling awful won’t feel right. Acknowledge that it feels bad now and be true to yourself and your feelings in that way. Give yourself time to feel those feelings. If you can, though, try to be open to the fact that the event may be a turning point meant to steer you in a better direction. Even if you aren’t sure how yet.

    Your next question, “when someone has been negative toward me, should I afford them a second chance,” and then you questioned whether people and attitudes change. I think there are two things to consider in such a situation. The first thing is the most important: you must proceed in a way in which you honor yourself. This doesn’t mean to be selfish. This just means that your first responsibility in life is to take care of yourself. Would giving a person a second chance mean to betray yourself in some way? Then don’t do it. The other thing I would suggest is to listen to your gut. If the situation were to happen again, how do you feel they would handle it? The same way or different? They may have learned from their mistakes . . . but they also may not have.

    Finally, you asked, “when you are in a negative situation that has happened a long time ago, how do you respond to it in the present?” My best advice here is to look at the legacy that that event may have created in your life. You may have to dig deep, but try to answer these questions: how did you change? Was it for better or worse? Did you grow? If so, how? Did the event push you in another direction? The key here is to look at the big picture- almost like the event was part of a movie plot. How did it impact the things that have happened since?

    Thanks for reading my blog! I hope I was able to help. Do feel free to ask more ?s


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