Be Strong: How to Deal With Pain and Hardships in Your Life



Creative Commons License photo credit: _Ganesha_

Every now and then life throws us in the deep end and tells us to swim. We find ourselves in overwhelming situations that we don’t know how to deal with. It might be the death of a loved one, a personal illness or a case of serious depression. In this post I want to give you a few ways to deal with the pain and hardships that you will encounter in your life. I hope it will inspire you just a little bit.

The inevitability of hardships

The first thing I want to talk about is the fact that pain and hardships are inevitable. No one can escape them. Every single one of us, at some point in our life, will experience pain, suffering and hardships of some form or another.

My goal in saying this is not to depress you. Rather my goal is to inspire you. How is this inspiring you might ask? Well it is simple. Being aware of the fact that you WILL experience suffering is a cause for hope because, unlike many other people, you now have a chance to prepare for it. And people who prepare are never as badly affected as those who don’t.

Suffering, pain and hardships are inevitable. Make sure your preparation for them is also just as inevitable. This is the most important step.

How to deal with pain and hardships in your life


Creative Commons License photo credit: HAMED MASOUMI

The tips that I am about to give you come from two places, my own personal experience and the experiences of history’s greatest meditation masters. Sometimes it is better to hear some pithy and real tips as opposed to some dry and theoretical ones. I will try, therefore, to keep these as practical as possible.

If you have any other tips to add please leave a comment. The comments are often the best part of this blog and I know that they help a lot of people out there.

Realize that it is your hardships that make you better
Picture this. You are in the center of the Indian desert. You are just out of high school; young, naive and egotistical. You are on a bit of a spiritual journey but at the same time looking for adventure. And then after just arriving in a place miles from anywhere you wake up in the middle of the night vomiting, convulsing and shaking. You are days from a hospital and you are really sick. Things start to look bleak.

That is the situation I found myself in on my first trip to India. I had eaten some poisonous food and for the next three days I lay in bed sick as a dog. It didn’t matter what I did, nothing seemed to help. I started to get quite frightened as I knew I was too sick to travel and there were no doctors around. But then something amazing happened, I was paid a visit by a very lovely Tibetan Lama. He came into my room and said one thing and one thing only. I have never ever forgotten it as it had such a profound impact on my life. He said:

“I am not interested in how much money you have or what family you belong to. I am interested in how you deal with hardships. That is the only thing that matters. That defines your future.”

It is the truest thing anyone has ever said to me about suffering and hardships. It is the hardships that define your character. Everyone is charming and lovely when the birds are chirping and the flowers are blooming but hardly anyone is compassionate, patient and loving when they are sick, ill or under pressure. How you deal with hardships determines your character.

If you want to learn to deal with pain and hardship you need to realize that you have an amazing opportunity to grow as a person. You can prove to yourself that you are strong. You can show yourself that you have strength of character and will-power. The amazing thing about hardships and pain is that they present you with a rare opportunity to grow into a strong and decent human being.

Realize that pain and hardships won’t last
There is a great truth in this universe that applies to everything. There is no corner of the world that it does not touch, no depth of the ocean that it does not find, no planet in space that it cannot reach. That truth applies to everyone and everything. That truth is impermanence. Nothing lasts.

We have heard it all before. What goes up must come down. What comes together must eventually part. What is composite will soon break. What is accumulated will one day be dispersed. Everything in our universe is impermanent. Nothing can escape it.

As depressing as this sounds it also has an upside. The next time you are going through some pain or hardships you can remind yourself that it won’t last. You can look at everything in history and feel secure in knowing that, no matter how bad things seem now, the problems won’t last forever. What a wonderful thing! Like all things, suffering is also impermanent.

Realize that you are not alone
There is something very powerful about knowing that other people are going through what you are going through. Realizing that you are not alone is an extremely good way to deal with pain and hardships.

Let’s take the example of someone with severe depression. Depression can make you feel pretty alone. In fact, 90% of the time depression makes you feel so isolated and self-orientated that you don’t have a thought about other people for long stretches of time. I was a bit like this in my teen years.

But when you open up to the fact that you are not alone you get a boost of some really powerful strength. You get a sense of community, of friendship, of companionship – even if you haven’t met anyone else with the condition. Just knowing that there are other people out there like you can really make you feel good.

The next step in this idea is to realize that thousands of other people have gone through what you are going through and come out the other end. They have made it through and won. They haven’t died, lost hope or given up. They have faced the very same thing as you (whatever it is) and they have come out the other end. Never forget this.

Suggestions from the readers
I don’t want to say anymore on this topic. Here at The Daily Mind we are lucky enough to have some super intelligent and wise readers – much smarter than I am. I would therefore like to open the comments section up to your ideas and suggestions.

Please take two minutes to leave your suggestions and advice on how to deal with pain and hardships. If you have been through some tough times and found something particularly useful then please let us know. It doesn’t matter how small or insignificant it might seem – your suggestion could really help someone.




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66 Comments »

2009-01-14 14:02:19

There is a saying “Tough time don’t last but tough people do”!

Very useful post.
Thank you

Comment by The Daily Minder
2009-01-15 02:06:53

I like it! Thanks for letting us know Shamelle.

TDM

 
 
Comment by Daryl
2009-01-14 15:44:55

What an inspiring article. Very well done. What helps me get through a hardship is something I borrow from bicycle racing, and that is this, “hat what doesn’t kill us, will only make us stronger.”

Comment by The Daily Minder
2009-01-15 02:07:42

So true! Lance Armstrong is currently in my city for the Tour Down Under. I saw him riding his bike this morning with his team – he sure look strong as ever.

 
 
Comment by Bala
2009-01-15 06:03:44

Wonderful Article. I hope it helps everyone as it did to me.
One thing as you said we all should remember is “this too shall pass”. Nothing lasts forever.

One tip which I could give is, when you are in such a depression, dont try to find/do things which gives your temporary relief. First you must understand, accept and sink that such and such happened to you, you cannot escape, next it try to find the permanent solution. If it is a loss of loved one, thou you cant get them back, you can still come out by shifting your focus on something else. Help people, when you help others that is the best relief you can get, by doing so,you will get to know that your situation is far more better and you can contribute as much as possible to this society. Everyone is going through tough times, infact tough times are the one that differentiates a great human and a normal human. So stop self pity and stretch out to do something, that will help others.
Happy Living

Comment by The Daily Minder
2009-01-15 07:58:45

Great tips Bala. Thank you for sharing them.

 
 
Comment by Miss Attica
2009-01-15 10:01:51

Thanks for another great article. I can picture you in the Indian desert when that godlike Lama came along. Great!

My experience with pain from giving birth (4 times) has taught me to cling to the fact that “this too shall pass” for sure! :-)

Comment by The Daily Minder
2009-01-15 22:43:56

I can imagine!

 
 
Comment by Meaghan
2009-01-15 13:24:45

When I’m struggling I think about my grandmother. She had a very hard life, much of it unhappy. I asked her how she kept going despite poverty, deferred dreams, abuse, etc. and she told me that at the end of the hard days she’d tell herself, “Tomorrow will be better.” And what if tomorrow wasn’t better? I’d ask. “Well, then the day after that probably would be.” I guess this is a Depression-era twist on impermanance.

I was in my late teens when Gram first told me this, and didn’t “get” what she meant. I felt like she was lying to herself. From my perspective, I didn’t really see how tomorrow was going to be any different from today – the same issues, worries, lack, pain, etc. would still exist. Fortunately I had another ten years or so to observe my Gram and her life and was able to see that, yes, usually tomorrow WAS better, sometimes in a small way, sometimes in a dramatic way.

So, now when I have a hard day (or week) I see my Gram getting into bed after a long day, whispering to herself, “Tomorrow will be better” and I draw a lot of strength and courage from this.

Comment by The Daily Minder
2009-01-15 22:44:36

Thank you for sharing that Meaghan. Some great wisdom there.

TDM

 
 
Comment by Patricia C.
2009-01-15 19:52:29

i really liked your article – you hit on some really important points to remember. I must admit, earlier in life I went through some really tough times (lost my father, sister, and mother over a span of 5 years and then was out of work for a yr during the ’01 recession). I didn’t cope so well back then and suffered from bouts of depression.

However, I learned a lot from those experiences. Today, I find meditation, journaling, and regular exercise help a LOT. I’m less ‘reactionary’ and can better ‘talk back’ to negative thoughts. I think your early comment about preparation for the inevitable hardships is key. By taking care of my mental health on a daily battle, I’m better equipped to deal with problems (big and small) as they arise.

Comment by The Daily Minder
2009-01-15 22:45:42

Patricia – I’m sorry to hear about your family. What has been the most important thing for your depression?

 
 
2009-01-16 23:47:17

Excellent post! I’ve been through a few serious challenges in life, and the realization that “what doesn’t kill me makes me stronger” was very profound, and allowed me to take the value in all stressful experiences. I also have reminded myself that “this, too, shall pass” when I’ve been frustrated as a mom–dirty diapers and tantrums are gone so quickly!

I also like looking at things the way a clinical optimist does: see the negative as limited in scope, not personal to me, and fleeting, while savoring the positive and expecting it to last. That and a strong, supportive network can really take the stress out of life’s challenges.

I’m bookmarking this post–it’s a keeper!

Elizabeth Scott

Comment by The Daily Minder
2009-01-17 00:11:48

Hi Elizabeth.

Thanks for the compliments. I think you are right about the “clinical optimist” remarks. There is a choice in how we react.

Thanks for stopping by.

TDM

 
 
Comment by Josh Lipovetsky
2009-01-17 15:39:03

Excellent article, I too have suffered from a chronic illness. I am 16, and I have an extreme case of UC. I was in and out of the hospital 6 times in these recent 9 months. The most recent trip being just a couple of days ago. I have received many blood transfusions, and experienced some awful physical pain. Through it all, I have been reading books, many great blogs such as this one, and they have helped me greatly. All of the people who I come in contact with are amazed at the way I react to having such a nasty condition. I never cry, whine, or complain about my hardships. Instead, I try my best to make the lives of people around me as enjoyable as possible. Nurses, Doctors, etc, all enjoy my company, because I know that the disease is meant to shape my life, and who I will be in the future. I know that everything that happens in my life every day, is all part of Gods plan. And remember, every obstacle that God throws at you, no matter how tough it may seem, He knows you have the power to eventually overcome and become a stronger person. Never give up hope. Never give up faith.

Comment by The Daily Minder
2009-01-19 06:07:31

Hi Josh. Thank you for sharing. Can you please explain what UC is? I haven’t heard of it.

Thanks.

TDM

Comment by Josh Lipovetsky
2009-01-24 12:56:00

UC is Ulcerative Colitis. It’s a pretty mild Intestinal disease in its normal form, but life threatening if severe. I am extremely fortunate, and I try my best every day.

Thanks TDM,
Josh.

 
 
 
Comment by Trey Baird
2009-01-19 07:32:52

What I do requires a little bit of preparation. Whenever I reach a point of bliss, a point where I am much happier than I usually am, I take a step back, and I document it. I say, out lout to myself, “THIS is what life is capable of being.” It’s a reminder for myself, that when I hit hard times, or am depressed, that if I open myself up to the possibility, I can be capable of feeling truly wonderful emotions.

 
Comment by Pipps
2009-01-22 10:56:23

Thank you for a brilliant article.

My personal view of the phrase: ‘What doesn’t kill me makes me stronger’, is that it is cliched nonsense. I was in motor vehicle accident several years ago. I nearly died. I am still suffering the physical damage even today. No doubt, it has ruined my life and made me weaker.

It’s rather similar to saying: ‘It’ll all work out in the end — if it hasn’t worked out then it’s not the end’. Again, nonsense. And the logical inversion of the statement is equal nonsense.

Things don’t always work out for people. Good people suffer terrible pain. Noble-hearted people die under terrible circumstances with little consolation for their integrity. Humans are imperfect. Life is unfair.

I have learnt to take a ‘Dr House’ view of mortality: It’s all pointless. Why on earth did you ever expect your life to be anything else?

And so I refer back to the Tibetan Lama:
“…I am interested in how you deal with hardships. That is the only thing that matters. That defines your future.”

He didn’t say it would grant you a better future. Just that it would define your future.

Comment by The Daily Minder
2009-01-22 12:19:10

Hi Pipps. I am sorry to hear about your accident.

I think what the Tibetan Lama meant was that you have a choice about how you react to the suffering and hardships – do you choose to let it get you down or do you choose to use it as motivation to become a stronger and more altruistic individual.

While your car accident may have made you physically weaker it is a great opportunity to take your life in a new direction and, much like a cancer survivor, understand your mortality and use what time you have left for the better.

Dr. House, in my opinion, is an idiot. He represents what annoys me most about some humans – brilliant intelligence but cold as ice. Dr. House could be truly happy if he would only get out of his own way.

Thanks heaps for your comment. I hope your pain gets better soon.

TDM

 
 
Comment by Fellow Survivor
2009-01-22 17:48:06

Pipps,

I, too, was in a really bad car accident and came very close to death. It also almost killed me a few years later in unforseen complications. However, that was almost 2 decades ago and, although I have carried some serious scars most of my life (I was lucky enough to mostly recover in every other way, eventually), I have considered the accident to be one of the best things that happened to me. It gave me the opportunity to become stronger.

Just like TDM said, it made my body weaker, but the strength of character that I had to develop to meet the challenges I faced, what I learned about life when everything was stripped away from me, and the way I learned to be with other people once I realized that they could be taken, literally, at any moment, has made all the difference in my life. The pain went away long ago (mostly), but what I got from the situation was so much more.

I could have dealt with it by focusing on what I lost and what I was forced to endure, but I focused on surviving, creating meaning, and not letting the experience (and my suffering) go to waste. And it has defined my life–and made me stronger!

You may still be too close to the situation right now to see what you may have gained from it, or you may not be done processing things, or you may benefit from changing how you see the whole thing. (It was very difficult for me at the time, and I was really mad at people who told me how ‘lucky’ I was that I lived through the wreck, when I was unable to walk and they took things like that for granted.)

Just have faith that you really may gain a lot from the experience in the end, if you deal with it in a certain way (as the Tibetan Lama said). Each time you make a choice to take stock of what you’ve gained and what you’re grateful for in life, you’re taking steps toward really using the experience to become stronger. And, when it’s difficult, just remember, ” This, too, shall pass.”

Comment by The Daily Minder
2009-01-23 00:22:03

Thank you for posting this.

 
 
Comment by Trey Baird
2009-01-23 00:04:37

Dr. House is a fictional character, based on Sherlock Holmes, who has a strong foundation because he represents a lot of real people.

For the most part, intelligence and depression has a direct correlation. Ignorance is bliss as they say, which is so true. Smarter people tend to be less happy.

Dr. House is a wonderful character, because seeing his tirades, and opinionated nillhistic views on life is inspiring for people. People see how miserable of a person he is, and how much trouble it gets him in, and it inspires people to not be like him.

There’s a reason House is one the top shows on the air right now.

Comment by The Daily Minder
2009-01-23 00:23:03

Well said Trey, well said.

So what is the cause of Dr. House’s depression? Is it self-loathing? Feelings of helplessness? Addiction?

What do you think?

Comment by Trey Baird
2009-01-23 00:29:52

Well, for starters, all of the above. Mostly addiction though. As you know, he’s addicted to vicodin, and has attempted to give it up, and can’t. For someone of his intellect, this must be very humbling. I’m sure that he’s not used to the fact that he’s deficient in any area, and hasn’t made peace with the fact that he’s human. That’s where the self loathing comes into play, and possibly the helplessness.

I also think that he’s smart enough to “see through religion” as he would probably put it. He can spot all of the things that’s wrong with faith, and concludes that it’s pointless and illogical to be hopeful for an afterlife. He’s probably concluded that there is none, and all he has to look forward to is a lifetime of pain and misery.

He also isn’t a people person, and doesn’t get the respect that he deserves for saving so many people’s lives, simply because people don’t like him. It’s frustrating to dedicating your life to helping people out that don’t want to be helped.

That’s pretty much my thoughts on House. My, how the topic changed quickly. My bad. :-)

 
 
 
Comment by gareth
2009-02-06 20:38:12

what a fantastic article! I have very recently lost my sister aged 33 to secondary breast cancer. She has left behind a 3 year old daughter. For me the hardest thing is to understand why? Why would she be chosen to have to deal with this. It is so unfair. She truly was such a beautiful and complete person who put everyone before herself. . . . Even at her lowest points. She is my inspiration. . . . She whispered in my ear when i was knelt at her side heartbroken. . . . Your past is for reference not for residence! Don’t let what’s happened to me shape your life in the future. . . . You know it happened you felt the pain you were there! Just take my memory and keep it with you and fight towards the day we will meet. I think life basically is this long and twisting road with many stops and uncertainties BUT if we help each other . . . We can get through and come out the other side and more rounded and complete person. Thank you for all the other posts . . . Really wonderful stuff to read through! Take care Gareth

 
Comment by seanymph
2009-02-09 00:12:06

I have had these times and am going thru one right now. There are days that it just takes you down and you have to rest. First you must take care of yourself. If you are weak and tired, you must rest. Try to just live moment to moment and not look at the whole picture. That can be overwhelming and make you feel worse. Some have asked me how I got thru some of the bad times in my life. Honestly? You must keep putting one foot in front of the other. Some days just taking a few steps is all you can bear but its a journey…….and one day you realize you have gotten thru it. Not all at once….but step by step, moment by moment.

 
Comment by ekaterina
2009-06-29 17:03:13

Hallo everybody :)

It`s great that people share :) it`s great to be kind and understand each other :)

I was lucky that the first time I was faced with a great trouble( the death ot my mom) I found love in the face of my family and a boy, my first real love :)
It happened 2 years ago.now I`m sitting exams to go university, they are after a week, and right now.. my boy is going to leave me .. It`s not for sure, but his love has gone.. I feel sad, disappointed and look for a remedy, for strenght in me myself, not in other people`s love. Hope to make it, to be strong enough to pass the exams :)
Your article is very nice and well-written for people that are suffering while reading :). Personally I find peace and an expression of my pain in music, breathing, sport, friends, my brother and IN REMEMBERING THAT I`VE ALREADY GONE THROUGH A MUCH WORSE TIME, AS MANY PEOPLE HAVE DONE TOO

After getting over the first loss, I was afraid of other ones, I hoped sun` d shine forever, but no.. sadness comes and goes :)and soon or later we must learn to deal with in on our own

Good luck, optimism and strenght to all ot you!!! We`re stronger that we thought :) :)

 
Comment by tohonyOwnet
2009-07-06 19:11:44

Music of Michael Jackson is going to live for ever no matter what, I think It’s became a legendof ‘pop’, He was so depressed last time and has lots of problems, poor guy – that was probably end for him – so sad all we can do is keep memory of him in our hearts.

 
Comment by Eima
2009-07-26 16:01:44

“Realize that you are not alone”-pice of shit. We are alone,and if you trust someone,they only will slow you dawon. You are alone,and it is the power of lolines that runs us in this world. You can’t trust nobody!
If you trust someone:friend,enemy,neautral. Eventualy they will become your enemy and that is that.
You can tell milion of times to me that you are right,but only i know the real true. I experienc that hundred of times.
If Someone wants to be strong,just ignor your feelings 100%,only from that you can become stronger!
I dont care about you. But i’m free today so i’m writing this not for someone! Just for my self. So think about his words.

 
Comment by Saurooon
2009-09-20 21:41:30

Hi, Thank you! I would now go on this blog every day!
Thank you
Saurooon

 
Comment by layla
2009-11-08 13:57:11

Feeling quite helpless and hopleless at the moment, another mistake committed the same way as ever,feeling guilty and angry at myself…But just reading these comments and knowing that this will empower me gives me a speck of strength I never knew I had it in me…I know for sure that all the hardships in mylife made me a better person, so this one is just the same…

Comment by The Daily Minder
2009-11-08 21:46:06

Good luck Layla. Be strong.

 
 
Comment by sani
2009-12-13 18:20:50

I am in a whole lot of trouble right now.Fnancially,emotionally and every type of ly. People around say that I am strong.I do not. They ask me how I do it. My answer- I just dug my shoes in the ground and detached myself emotionally from everything.EVERYTHING.Nothing effects me.It gave me the strength to carry on to pursue what needed to be pursued. It gave me objectivity.Others are secondary.The trick is that it enables you to prioritize. Emotions are a powerful thing. When you let it rule your mind…everything becomes a blur.Life is a battle.You may have lost a few battles but never lose the war.When you have prioritize based on importance and not on emotions and when you have sufficely stabilize yourself go and fight to the ends of the world for what you want,what you need.Remember that the storm does not last long.Be the eye of the storm when it is upon you. When there is havoc encirling you…be the calmness of nirvana.Hard to do.But it is the only way to remain rational and objective.When life has spent its arsenal on you.You can stand proud and claim to YOURSELF that you are worth it.Wjhat others say or feel is of no relevance.The important thing is ONLY YOU.

 
Comment by The Daily Minder
2009-12-13 23:00:34

Hi Sani. I am sorry to hear about your problems.

However I have to disagree with you that “only you” matters. I think the attitude of caring for oneself over others is why people are so stressed, anxious and unhappy in the first place. I believe that if we spend more time caring about others and considering their needs, we will be a lot happier people, despite what is going on in our own life.

Thanks for commenting.

TDM

 
Comment by sani
2009-12-13 23:27:00

Thank you,Sir/Ms.
That is just my point of view and my way of handling things. The best it may be not.But tis the only way that I can manage.Yes,I do concur with you that giving is the best.I read somewhere that in the camps during wartime there are people who find contentment by walking around and comforting others. I wholeheartedly agree. I wont talk about what I have done along those lines.But since I have help people before I understand. Tis just that, in my situation now,I cant even help myself moreless others.But I wont delve on it.In psychiatry and psychology,detachment is the best way of protecting oneself. I have done that when I was but a toddler.It saved me a whole lot of pain.I tried to open myself yet the darkness in life came and bit me till I lost control of myself literally for 13 months.Everything became a blur.Thus I remembered detachment.Hence I am in it now.I can talk freely about my pain without it effecting me.Now I can move again in the world.But thats me.What I have stated is in accordance to my personal self.I hope the readers of this site practice judgement in their views.What maybe right for me,might not be right for you.The pros and cons of everything needs to be weight before any decision is made. Finally Sir/Ms, your believe with regards to caring only about oneself is true. Of that I cannot deny.I have seen it happening too much.

 
Comment by The Daily Minder
2009-12-14 00:32:47

Thank you for sharing. I really enjoyed your comments. I hope you stop back often and share your views about my articles. Thank you.

TDM

 
Comment by bluesky
2009-12-14 18:04:53

I just want to share a bit of my own thoughts on the topic of being strong. I think what Sani said was interesting. Caring only for oneself is a way of self preservation. I was the same way as well for many years then I decided to open up because i realized that I was missing out in life by not allowing myself to be volunerable. It is true many people are selfish and irresponsible but there are also people with exceptional qualities that are worth open yourself up for. By allowing people in, i have suffered greatly which is the reason why I’m reading this post to find new ways of dealing with the challenges in life. I just want to say thank you for the insights and it’s been a great help.

 
Comment by sani
2009-12-14 21:02:35

Yes,Mr Bluesky,you understand then what I meant.Before I can help others, I have to help myself.Not being egoistical but that is just the way things are.When I am able to stand again,when I am whole again…then I will be able to continue with my previous self in a fashion. But dear bluesky,everything in life must have goals.Without it, then it would just become a dream.EThere effort must be made. A set time line to be projected. then only is there purpose.If not those that we hope to achieve will be nothing less than hope.There can be miracles when we believe as the song by Mariah Carey and Whithney Houston.But believe is nothing without the will to succeed. And whence does the will come from you might ask? To me,myself and I, the will comes from humiliation.I will not let people see that I failed. Therein is my strength.For others, find something that is the pillar of your life.Latch on to it.Make it your utmost desire.Pretend if you have to.But fight.We have but one life.All of us are champions as my late teacher used to say. For being born itself is a war.Dont lose hope. Tis better to lose the fight in honour than as a coward. Sorry, my apologies. just my point of view.please for none to take offence.In my part of the world (Malaysia),there is an old saying which means “Make a lot of friends but love only one.Never ever make an enemy” kindly take note that in the english language love means either as love to material things,to a mother,sister or wife. the love I specified here is the love to a wife.As in Romeo and juliet.

 
Comment by Andrea
2010-02-27 05:04:49

Sometimes I find it easier to help others than myself….I can get too lost in my own world in my mind or emotions to find a way to think or act differently. But looking at other people’s lives, things are often much simpler from the outside and sometimes it’s easier to help them see it by just lending a hand or lending an ear. I’m glad to help, even if my own situation is the same. Sometimes it takes me out of myself for just a bit, which can be a relief.

 
Comment by BaconWaffle
2010-03-03 02:46:16

See the funny thing about this is that for some of us, pain and suffering never leaves us. Your theory only works for those that have their pain and suffering diminished but for those of us that live in a world where the good days are defined by whether we can walk up the stairs to get food that day, well.. I guess it just doesn’t really work quite the same.

 
Comment by Dena
2010-04-01 10:13:02

This is so helpful right now
I practically lost all my friends
And I just realized that they have always been using me and stepping on me and now they don’t want to accept the fact that I’m stronger and that I’m not a people pleaser anymore..its like my life has always been a lie
And I feel like even though I have no one anymore I finally have myself which is the most important and I don’t feel lonely like I did before

 
Comment by Muhammad Naz
2010-04-05 23:44:26

beautiful pictures are develped from negatives in dark room,so if anything you see darkness in your life it means GOD is developing a beautiful future for you

 
Comment by rita
2010-05-09 16:38:02

In my life of 43 years i have found more or less everyone has gone through hardship, but the pain of letting love lost for others is heartbreaking, but
Almighty is with me always as my best friend, holding my hand to show me the right path. have faith in God

 
Comment by Sharon
2010-05-10 19:47:25

Focus on the positive!

If you dwell on all of the negative or things that are wrong in your life, not only will you attract more of it, but you will surely continue to feel awful.

If you look at the good in every situation, you will start to be grateful and happy, allowing more positive situations to enter into your life.

 
Comment by Kanchi
2010-05-13 12:19:30

Really a nice article !!!

Iam one of those who is undergoing the worst part of my life … hoping i will be out of this soon !!

Keep up your good writing !

 
Comment by Lily
2010-07-04 02:14:17

I’m experiencing a bit of pain right now. I’m sick. What helps me is to have a catharsis of some sort. I will watch a movie that will cause me to experience a variety of emotions, usually the tragedies work best. For some reason, the release of my emotions takes my mind off of the physical pain. I hope this helps someone…Another thing that helps me is acceptance. Instead of fighting the pain or freaking out, I wait for the pain to subside. Advil is also a beautiful invention (for physical pain anyway). Someone said journal writing before…I wholeheartedly agree that it is therapeutic for emotional pain. A lot of the time, talking about your pain to someone helps…I would know I’m particularly sensitive to everything under the sun. I’ve had to develop strategies to live normally. Best of luck to everyone.

 
Comment by Chorizo
2010-07-05 11:16:58

I’m turning 31 in a week, and as I’ve neared the end of my 20’s and entered my 30’s, more and more, I get severely depressed during what used to be my most looked-forward to day in the year. I don’t know if it’s cyclical, but since it’s happened more as I’ve gotten older, I think it’s also my environment, and where I am in life as compared to where I should be. I don’t have any real friends, I haven’t had any long-term romantic relationships, I live at home, I’ve lost family members, and I don’t have a steady income. So on the one hand, I ought to be excused for feeling depressed.

But on the other hand, my situation is not unique, based on the above comments. And thus, it really is how we cope that matters, not our circumstances.

I really agree with Andrea’s comment about helping others. Joining a community, or a non-profit takes us out of ourselves, makes me less self-absorbed and self-pitying, and bring me in contact with those who are less fortunate. And there is always someone less fortunate. And very often, they don’t suffer from depression.
Another suggestion that seems to work for me is do things and experience things with other people. Preferably in the sunshine. Just being outdoors or doing yoga or some sports with a group not only spurs you on to engage in the activity, but also gets you in contact with others.

In the end, depression can be defined as, becoming your own worst enemy. I don’t deny that it’s a serious illness, and one that may be bandied about a bit to carelessly. But more often than not, what we experience is the blues, and brooding over it is like adding gasoline to the proverbial fire.

 
2010-08-02 19:29:37

After reading the artical above I felt a sence of understanding for the first time. The things I am faceing, battleing and comeing to terms with are indeed I belive some of the worst things that could ever happon to anyone as they spark off many other problems and they started when I was six years of age.
All-though these things which plage me bring me down and cause problems make me consider things no one should ever have to even think about, Im greatfull to have them, as with out them I wouldnt be who I am. I wouldnt be me (who ever I am) and with out these problems life would be boring. I mean is a life with out complications really worth liveing?
allthough Im still searching for answers(After 10 years) to a lot of questions. I have learned.
Life is hard but thats half the fun

 
Comment by ece
2010-10-01 00:01:16

thanks for the great article :D

I think its so true that what doesnt kill us makes us stronger, because only those who do not give up can see what good came out of something bad anyway. I have always been a very happy adventurer dreamer optimistic type, but lately i’ve seen some truth: some people just do not like life at all. and it just goes against everything i believe in, and it makes me so sad to see those people and i can just imagine how they must think and feel– and after witnessing all that its hard to find yourself again. and finding strength is easy peasy, but applying it to your life requires will power to feel better. so i think its very important to be an inspiration (like this article and comments) so that people can once again have a reason to be happy :)but can i ask you for advice?: how do you deal with people who do not like life? how do you not let it get to you and feel the same way they do?

 
Comment by Shadab
2010-10-14 04:39:53

Dear Sir/Madam,
I just read this blog now and I must say this is a very inspiring blog. Like you I also write about my blogs about dealing with hardships, loneliness , pain and whatever it is out there. There are many ways you can deal with hardships and I believe quotes or quotations from inspiring people help us in our daily lives.
The Buddha once said “What we think, we become” and yes this is very much true. One day you wake up and this powerful force gets to you and something in you changes. Like music, love, friendship, this hidden force changes our lives and I totally agree with this. It is faith that we sort of cling to sometimes they are true and sometimes they aren’t but during loneliness if you believe in faith and friendship and if they are pure, good things automatically comes to you.

I won’t say much but thank you for this great blog.
I have suffered my teen years and just like the Oasis song “Don’t Look Back In Anger” is what suffices prior to what you have said or that’s how I feel.

 
Comment by Red Javier
2010-10-20 14:09:39

Well,

Honestly, I am so hurt at this very moment. But, I love God above all. My faith is unshakable, because God continuosly Loves me…. A friend of mine is a terrible lier! It hurts me because, I love her as a friend. As I have mentinoed, I am willing to forgive her. I was able to reach this page asking for more strenght. Let me forgive, because Yes, let it be in God’s Time, not in my time to get angry!…And more importantly… O my God, i have so many friends who love me compared to this one who has terribly lied to me…Smile..Life is Beautiful!

Miss Red Javier

 
Comment by Photographer
2010-11-29 20:14:52

I’m a 52 y/o male, trying to make it as a photographer and thinking back as far as I can remember, depression has always in some degree, been present in my life. Have been on medication also as long, with some mixed results, never 100% free of depression. Presently not taking any.
Do not enjoy being too much around people. Tend to like being by myself or with my relationship.
Currently I’m struggling with a “heavy” relationship in terms of expressing love and affection as well as expectations for a good future and trying as hard as I can to make it in the field of architectural photography (one of the hardest areas of photography to get work in) but is the only thing that makes me feel alive when Im working, no other type of photography does.
Had a glimpse of success working briefly for a company in the field of hotel photography, but although my boss seems to love my work, his calls have been less and less frequent and it has been months since I do not get work, in spite of all his many many promises of future success.
Presently going through one of my deepest depressions in years and everything seems to get bleaker and bleaker around me. My fear is that far from my situation getting any better, it seems to be getting worse.
Presently found work in a studio photography, and I must say it is some of the hardest and lowest paying jobs I have ever had. Only my love for photography and the need for some coins to live gets me going…, and it feels like an awesome struggle and I’m not sure what to do. Solutions seem to elude me. Sometimes I ask God to end my life somehow, somehow that is not painful.

 
Comment by majorshadow
2010-12-05 11:18:55

“Breathe” a song about hardships at the following URL
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ohheyitp06M

 
Comment by Swanz
2010-12-09 15:56:03

Life is a cycle…
Sometimes at the top sometimes at the bottom.
We just need to work harder when we are at the top to prevent from falling to the lowest bottom & when we thought we are at the bottom we struggle harder to climb back to the top. Do not expect others to help us to make our life better.
In conclusion… there is no time to complain, working harder is the only strength for mankind to advance.

 
Comment by John
2010-12-09 15:56:09

I am 34 years old – male
Living with stressful parent and people and I never mix around with people. I am struggling in life, I find it very hard for me to overcome my negative thoughts(overwhelming situations that I don’t know how to deal with) and can’t able to cope in a job. Job i have been working in and out for many jobs. Now my new job as kitchen crew at food court front counter (I don’t want to quit this job but it’s very difficult in learning the job, remembering the name of the item – Easily forget and they must keep teaching me), my knee injury and can’t able to squad down and up and taking responsibility at work and going to work early. I have been feeling very moody these days(Rate 0 to 10 = 9). People around my area keep stressing me, making fun of me, etc everyday and my niece and my sister children keep crying and making a hell of my life and none of my family member understand me(Rate 0 to 10 = 10). I find it very difficult to go to bed early and get up in the morning early to work. I see that some people can easily cope and learn and be flexible at work. It’s not very easy for me to cope and be independent (Rate 0 to 10 = 10). I am very scared and shy person. I am too afraid to change my life and can’t able to face the problem in my life. Frustration that i can’t able to cure my knee injury, overcome my stress, get a girl friend, pick up course and cope in job – 5 years past. I can’t able to do Meditation because i am stressful and can’t able to be lonely – start to get scared. I am start to think about Suicide thoughts************** – i am struggling and trying my best i can but I am very helpless.

 
Comment by majorshadow
2010-12-12 10:38:15

Song Title: “Breathe”
Hear at URL: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q2jRHk2rQ_w
song is about the hardships of life

 
Comment by The Daily Minder
2010-12-13 05:44:04

Hi John.

Things will pick up. Don’t lose hope.

Have you tried sharing your problems with anyone?

 
Comment by iYAN-kun
2011-02-13 03:14:39

when i get busted by a girl because of my smell issue, this phrase from buddhism went through my mind, “Thats the way things are.. let it be,”

 
Comment by Mark
2011-02-22 17:08:41

thank you for the wonderful writeup. it definitely made my day better.

 
Comment by Paulpeters
2011-03-20 00:09:56

Life is beautiful but when in depression it becomes the opposite. But in all adversity of life there is always an expiry date nothing last for ever.

 
Comment by Confucius
2011-04-21 02:29:56

A passage from the Analects of Confucius (translated by Rodger T Ames and Henry Rosemont Jr.)
14.38 Zilu spent the night at Stone Gate. The morning gatekeeper asked him, “Where are you from?” “From the residence of Confucius,” replied Zilu. “Isn’t he the one who keeps trying although he knows that it is in vain?” asked the gatekeeper.
This passage from the Analects always helps me. Confucius had a reputation for perseverance and I find myself remembering this passage when I know I need to keep fighting and trying in all my struggles. I would like to be known by my friends, family, and colleagues as someone of noble character and a strong will, much the way Confucius was.

 
Comment by pramosh pual
2011-05-12 20:11:39

I was so depressed before reading this becuase of my father..
but now i realize things happens let it happen u dont have to think over it for eg.there is day and there is night and this will continue always for ever.

 
Comment by Mike
2013-05-04 04:50:30

Thank you for this article. It really helped me see things in a different perspective. :)

 
Comment by Neeraj
2013-07-04 13:49:41

Been pretty sad because some issue I’m facing with my collegue. Can’t seem to understand her, I really like her. She’s elder than me by far. She’s married. Has kids. I’m just 21. We were very friendly with each other. But suddenly she changed with me. I asked her what’s wrong but she won’t tell me, gives me excuses even though I know she’s not speaking the truth. My problem is I just can’t stop thinking about it. The more I think about it, the more I feel bad and hurt. I don’t wanna lose her. But the way things are goIng, I don’t know what to do. I always fall weak. She doesn’t look bothered much. Can’t even share this with anyone. I don’t like hurting people. I like making friends, but I feel I always get fucked in the end for the kind of person I am. I need to be stronger. Always wonder why am I so weak and why do I care so much when people don’t Seem to bother at all..

 
Comment by maria
2013-07-08 22:36:29

you people dont know wat stress is be on my shoe and am sure u wont survive even a second.am depressed and cant open up and have never.people think am happy but am not amitriptline,a depression drug kips me going.

 
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