How to stay calm when life gets tough

We'd all love to breeze through life easily but the truth is there will be times when everything is less than ideal. 

You know what I mean right?

Those times when unexpected bills appear, you and your other half can't seem to communicate without having a fight and your boss is breathing down your neck at every opportunity.

It's times like this when even the simplest actions can seem too hard, but it's also when we need to take care of ourselves the most. Today, I have a few tips on how to stay calm when life gets tough... 

1. Create Space

It be overwhelming when life gets tough but by creating some space, we open the door to clarity and wisdom. Simple acts such as stopping to take a few deep breaths can make a big difference. Consider setting an hourly reminder on your phone to stop and breathe. 

Meditation is a great tool - even just 5 minutes a day can bring a sense of calm and peace. When we are stressed we often view situations as far worse than they actually are, meditation can help us to see things in their true perspective. 

2. Connect

When life deals us a shit-storm, our first instinct is often to withdraw. Whether as an avoidance technique, a fear of being vulnerable or a fear of 'bringing others down', the urge to hibernate can be magnetic. 

Putting yourself out there and exposing how you feel can seem terrifying, but it opens up the door to deep human connection. Choose to surround yourself with people who love you and who you can trust and let them support you. 

3. Practice Gratitude

It might seem like nothing is going right and in times of trouble and pain it's so easy to focus only on what's not working. Our negative or fearful thoughts can spiral uncontrollably so that all we can see is bleakness. Practicing gratitude helps to remind us that there is goodness in every situation.

Right before you go to bed, take out your journal and write down 3 things you are grateful for. If you want to note more than 3 things then great - but aim for 3 as a minimum. They might only be small things but that's ok. Focusing on the good we have in our life helps to carry us through the rough times. 

4. Practice self-care

Tired. Bloody-well exhausted. When we are experiencing the challenging times in life, it really begins to take it's toll on us mentally, and physically. What does your body need today? Hydration? Sleep? Nourishing food? A warm bath? 

Take some time to look after yourself, to give yourself rest and take it easy. No judgement. 

I'd love to know if you have any stress-busting tips so feel free to leave a comment below!