Submitted by Jen Jones on Thu, 11/05/2009 - 12:33pm
Bankruptcy is often filled with as many financial ups and downs as it is emotional ones. A fear of an uncertain future, the unfortunate stigmas about having to file, and the very real dose of reality can certainly be downers.. There is no shame in feeling depressed about your financial struggles. Trust us, you are not the only person feeling that way.
Much like contacting an attorney and filing bankruptcy will eventually relieve your financial troubles, there are a lot of things you can do to stop the emotional setbacks you might face during or after the process.
Experts on happiness, or psychologists really, encourage people to find and explore "their passion." Sounds corny, sure, but give it a shot. A meditation specialist in Woodacre, CA inspires in her clients a sense of calm by asking them to become aware of the "right now." By this she means honestly taking the time to assess where you are and what is happening around you. Do you have a roof over your head? (Almost all bankruptcy filers can keep their home.) Do you have loved ones nearby? Is your dog happy to see you? You know, the little things.
This theory is further supported by a university specialist in Wisconsin, Lori Hilt, who adds, "When we get caught up in cycles of brooding and worrying, our minds are stuck in the past or the future." So focus on the now in order to move forward.
Humor also adds a great deal of levity to emotionally overwhelmed people. Try a night out at a local comedy club or just rent some great stand-up routines on DVD. (If you can't laugh at Bill Cosby: Himself, one of the cleanest, consistently funny comedy shows ever filmed, then there may be no cure.) And if you can, seek out that old friend that always made you laugh. Tell them about your troubles, let them help you make light of it. It always helps to learn how to laugh at yourself.
Another great way to relieve stress and stay happy is to exercise. We've covered this in previous posts but it simply can't be repeated enough. Science has shown biological changes in people's emotional states as a result of physical activity. But don't just walk the stairs or park farther away from the office door---actually get out and spike that heart rate. You'll be shocked at the effects.
Remember when you were a kid and all you wanted was that great new toy coming out for Christmas? For so many of us, it was all that mattered. Come Easter though, we'd be lucky to even find that toy in the house, at least with all of its parts intact. The point is, material goods really only bring fleeting happiness. So strive to work at other avenues toward happiness. Join a book club, a bowling team or a hiking group. Be more polite to people and seek solace in the karma they send back your way. Hold open doors, say good morning and do favors. Basically, learn to recognize positive feelings in and around you and remember them. Quite literally, sometimes we need to teach ourselves how to be happy.
In the end, staying positive in tight times is about taking control of your money problems. Don't let them control you, seek help by calling us by and being the aggressor. Take a stand against stress caused by finances. It's your life; keep living it.
Excerpt Much like contacting an attorney and filing bankruptcy will eventually heal your financial troubles, there are a lot of things you can do to stop the emotional setbacks you might face during or after the process.
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