10 ways to heal and grow from the toughest moments

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Life can sometimes throw us a curveball that leaves us reeling. One moment you’re on top of the world, and the next, you’re down in the dumps, struggling to pick up the shattered pieces of your hopes and dreams.

It could be a heartbreak, a job loss, a health scare or a personal failure. Tough times, they say, don’t last, but tough people do.

But how exactly do you get through these moments? How do you heal and grow stronger from them? If you’ve ever asked yourself these questions, then this article is for you.

This article explores ten practical ways that can guide you through the process of healing and personal growth even amidst life’s toughest moments. And no, we’re not talking about quick fixes here; we’re looking at real-life strategies that will require your commitment and dedication but will also reward you with resilience, strength and wisdom.

The thing is, it’s not about the fall, it’s about how we dust ourselves off and keep going.

1. Acceptance is the key

I know, it sounds way easier said than done. When we’re hit with a tough situation, our first instinct is often denial. We try to convince ourselves it isn’t happening, or it’s not as bad as it seems. But here’s the deal – denial only delays the healing.

By accepting what’s happened, you’re not saying that what happened is okay. You are simply acknowledging the reality of the situation. It’s like saying, “Okay, this happened. It hurts. But it’s a part of my life now.”

Acceptance might feel like you’re surrendering, but really, it’s a form of empowerment. It allows you to understand your situation better and lays the groundwork for your recovery and growth.

So take a deep breath, let the reality sink in, and trust me, you’ve already taken your first step towards healing and growing from this tough time. 

2. Let yourself feel

When tough times strike, our emotions go into overdrive. Sadness, anger, frustration, fear – it’s like a whirlwind inside, right? And what do most of us do? We try to block these feelings. We think staying strong means not feeling weak. But here’s the twist – it’s perfectly okay to feel these emotions.

Think of it like this: emotions are like waves in an ocean. Sometimes they’re calm, sometimes they’re wild. But no wave lasts forever. Similarly, your feelings might seem overwhelming now, but they won’t last forever.

So cry if you need to, write in a journal or talk to a trusted friend. When you allow yourself to feel, you give your emotions a safe space to exist and eventually pass. Remember, feeling your emotions doesn’t make you weak; it makes you human. And it’s another big step towards healing and growing. So let those feelings flow!

3. Surround yourself with positivity

I’m sure you’ve heard the saying, “You’re the average of the five people you spend the most time with.” It sounds cliche, but trust me, it’s absolutely true. The people around us and their attitudes can greatly influence our own mindset and behavior. And this is especially crucial when we’re going through a rough phase.

Take a look at your circle. Are they supportive? Do they lift you up? Or do they pull you down? If it’s the latter, it might be time to reconsider who you’re spending your time with. Surround yourself with positivity – it can make all the difference in your journey of healing and growing. 

4. Take care of your body

Did you know that physical and emotional health are closely linked? That’s right, what we do with our bodies can have a big impact on our mood and mindset. When we’re going through tough times, it’s even more important to take care of our physical health.

It doesn’t have to be anything grand. Start with simple things like maintaining a balanced diet, getting enough sleep, and engaging in regular exercise. Even a short walk in the park can do wonders for your mood.

When your body feels good, it becomes a little easier for your mind to feel good too. So don’t neglect your physical health while you’re dealing with emotional turmoil. Remember, a healthy body can be a strong pillar of support for a healing heart and mind.

5. Forgive and let go

Now, this one is a toughie, but it’s also one of the most liberating things you can do for yourself. Whether it’s forgiving someone who hurt you, or forgiving yourself for a mistake you made, forgiveness is an essential part of healing and growing.

Holding onto resentment or blame is like carrying a heavy weight around your heart. It drains you, keeps you stuck in the past, and hinders your growth. But when you forgive, you’re not saying that what happened was okay. Instead, you’re choosing to release that weight from your heart. You’re choosing to let go of the bitterness that’s been holding you back.

Forgiveness is not an overnight process; it takes time and patience. It’s okay if you can’t forgive right away. The important thing is to be willing to work towards it.

Remember, forgiveness isn’t just about making peace with the past; it’s about creating space in your heart for better things to come. So take your time, forgive at your own pace, and watch how liberating it feels to let go. 

6. Find your outlet

Everyone has a unique way of expressing themselves, especially during hard times. It could be through art, music, writing, cooking, gardening – the list is endless. Finding your outlet can be a game-changer in your healing journey.

Explore different activities and find your own outlet. It might just become the healing balm you didn’t know you needed. And who knows? You might even discover a new passion along the way!

7. It’s okay to ask for help

We all want to be strong, to handle our problems on our own. We don’t want to be a burden on anyone. But here’s the raw, honest truth: It’s okay to ask for help.

Life can get really tough sometimes, and it’s perfectly okay to admit that you’re not okay. It doesn’t make you weak or less of a person. In fact, it takes a lot of strength to admit that you need help.

Whether it’s talking to a friend about what you’re going through, seeking professional help like a counselor or therapist, or joining a support group – reaching out can make a world of difference.

So if you’re struggling, don’t suffer in silence. Reach out. Ask for help. There are people around you who care and want to support you. And remember, everyone needs help sometimes – it’s part of being human. You’re not alone in this.

8. Practice gratitude

Did you know that numerous studies have found a strong link between gratitude and well-being? That’s right, practicing gratitude can significantly increase your happiness and reduce feelings of depression and stress.

In the midst of tough times, it might seem like there’s not much to be grateful for. But there’s always something, no matter how small it may seem. Maybe it’s a warm cup of coffee in the morning, a call from a dear friend, or simply the fact that you’re here, alive and breathing.

Practicing gratitude can shift your focus from what’s wrong in your life to what’s going right. It can help you realize that even though you’re going through a hard time, there are still good things happening around you.

So try to make it a habit to reflect on things you’re grateful for every day. You can write them down in a journal, or simply say them out loud. Remember, it’s not about the size of the thing you’re grateful for; it’s about acknowledging it.

Embrace the power of gratitude – it might just be the positivity boost you need!

9. Set small, achievable goals

When we’re going through tough times, it can feel like we’re stuck in a rut with no way out. Everything seems overwhelming, and the idea of making big changes or decisions can be daunting. That’s where setting small, achievable goals can help.

These small victories give a sense of accomplishment and control. They help regain confidence bit by bit and are a reminder that we can overcome the challenges we are facing.

So, start setting small goals for yourself. They don’t have to be big. Even the smallest step in the right direction can make a big difference in your journey towards healing and growing. And remember, every little victory counts!

10. Be patient with yourself

Healing takes time. Growth takes time. It’s not a race, and there are no shortcuts. Some days will be better than others. Some days you’ll take two steps forward, and other days, it might feel like you’re taking three steps back. That’s okay. It’s all part of the process.

You might feel frustrated or impatient with yourself for not getting over it faster, for not being “back to normal” yet. But remember, there’s no set timeline for healing and growth. It happens at its own pace, and that pace is different for everyone.

So be kind to yourself. Be patient with your journey. Celebrate your progress, no matter how small it may seem. You’re doing the best you can, and that’s more than enough.

Remember, tough times don’t last forever. You’re stronger than you think, and you have what it takes to heal and grow from this.

Believe in yourself, take it one day at a time, and most importantly, don’t lose hope!

Jeanette Brown

I have been in Education as a teacher, career coach and executive manager over many years.
I'm also an experienced coach who is passionate about supporting people in finding real meaning and purpose in their lives, building a resilient, grounded inner self and achieving their desired goals.

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