5 strategies to use when life goes to shit

Jason Gutierrez
November 9, 2021

Life can be overwhelming.

Earlier this year, I had a week that I specifically remember as being hectic, which is how I know it was bad. I mean, come on, it's tough to remember last week let alone one from many months ago.

My car broke down, the crypto market crashed, I had to tie up loose ends from my old job, then my first day at a new job, and on the weekend, I moved my girlfriend and her two kids in with me. It was just one of those weeks I felt helplessly overwhelmed and unable to breathe.

Fortunately, that's not my norm. Unfortunately, it happens from time to time.

When life gets tough, here are the 5 things I do to power through:

1. Breathe and do ONE thing

It's easy to get caught up in life's conjured shitstorm. When caught in a tizzy, I stop to take a deep breath and remind myself that I'm strong enough to persevere. Then, I deal with my issues methodically, one step at a time. My brain shifts focus to the task at hand and not on the billion other things going on.

2. Unplug and walk outside

I love my phone but it's an unnecessary distraction that fuels my anxiety. Instead of using it, I unplug and walk outside where I find relaxation and (quite frequently) life-changing realizations or ideas.

3. Hard exercise

During overwhelm, my natural inclination is to shut down...but f that. A good workout makes me feel like a badass (aka I can handle anything) and clears my mind.

4. Talk to someone

Sometimes you just have to bitch to someone to feel better about the situation. I get it, which is why I do it too. Often I find that my confidants are fighting their own battles. Empathy and shared misery are great ways to feel more connected and less lonely during the struggle.

5. Say "no"

As much as humanly possible, I avoid taking on any other work. My plate is already full and I don't need to stack it any higher. One of my favorite "life hacks" of all time. Just say no.


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