Discouragement is an interesting problem.
A lot of people equate it with being depressed—but it’s actually not the same thing.
In an article on the subject that was written by Margaret Wehrenberg Psy.D. and published on PsychologyToday.com, we gain some valuable insight into the actual cause of this debilitating negative emotion:
“Being discouraged is a state that sounds like depression, but the causes are so different. Typically, being discouraged starts with a tough situation that a person cannot find a way out of. Of course, if you were already depressed, this is more likely to result in a downward spiral, but even when not depressed, on-going failure to achieve a goal can result in mood and mental states that are like depression.
Discouraged thinking makes a rut in your brain that is hard to get out of.”
As it turns out, discouragement seems to be tied very closely to hopelessness.
Humans need hope in order to thrive and survive.
Perhaps this is one of the downsides to being ‘highly intelligent creatures…’ we can look into the future and come up with theories about whether or not we believe that we’ll actually succeed, survive, thrive, and find happiness.
And when we can’t see evidence of these things—well, that can be pretty debilitating.
So today, we’re going to share 4 tips that you can use to help overcome life discouragement, starting today.
Let’s dive into it.
1. Take A Step Back
Taking a step back, taking a small ‘break’ from your goals, and just in-general getting a bird’s eye view of your situation can really help you to get some perspective and figure out why you’re feeling so discouraged.
Use this opportunity to try to figure out why you feel this way.
This isn’t always easy. But this can be a useful method for doing some self-awareness work and trying to sort out a solution to the problem.
2. Lower Your Expectations
Sometimes, people set goals or make plans that are just unachievable and/or unrealistic.
And this can lead you headfirst into unavoidable failure—which can definitely make you feel discouraged.
To counter this, try to lower your expectations down to a reasonable level.
We’re only humans, and we only have so much energy. Try to focus on just one or two areas of improvement, and make small, reasonable strides toward success on a daily basis.
3. Set Achievable, Measurable Goals
When you set goals that are both achievable and measurable, you set yourself for much greater success—and this can give you quite a bit of hope.
However, this also gives you the power to actually track your progress. And when you realize that you’re making headway in accordance with your set goals, this will encourage you and help to keep you motivated.
4. Talk To A Friend Or Loved One
And last, but certainly not least, never underestimate the power of talking with a loved one and asking for some positivity, encouragement, and feedback.
Getting some positive, encouraging words from someone we love and care for can be an amazing way to help us feel better—and it’s a tool that we should strive to utilize as often as possible.