What to Do When You Hit Rock Bottom
Sometimes the bottom could be exactly what you needed to reinvent yourself.
You've lost your job. Your boyfriend dumped you. The car won't start. Every day seems to bring on new stress. You have officially hit your all-time low in life. Could it get any worse? Is this my life now? This moment is considered rock bottom, and it is usually not seen as a blessing. We don't want to ever get to this point but, inevitably, we all hit it at one point in time. I'm here to tell you that, while it sucks, this could be the exact thing you needed. As the saying goes, there is nowhere to go but up.
I hit rock bottom a few years ago and didn't think I would ever get out of it. The job that I hated (but thought I loved) had closed down, and I had no education to do anything else. I knew restaurants and how to manage teams, but at 22-years-old no one wanted my young blood leading their team. It took me close to a year to find a job, and I still hated it. My relationship wasn't going all that great (mostly from my own doing), and I felt overcome with self-doubt and insecurities. I felt more than awful.
I quite literally would have a breakdown every day, crying to my mother about how I felt so lost. What was I going to do with my life? Now I look back at this moment with gratitude because, if I had not hit rock bottom, I would never have had the ability to build myself back up. When you have nothing to lose it is easier to put yourself on a ledge and go for it. I mean, it can't get any worse, right?
My low point was a wake-up call that I needed to make a drastic change. I had always wanted to write, but never felt comfortable taking that plunge. After all, I had a job that paid well that was somewhat rewarding. Why would I leave that safety net? Once I lost this, it opened up the possibility to try out a new path. If I failed, it would only put me back to square one, a place that I now knew too well. The crazy thing about losing everything is that you can dare the risk.
You've lost everything. Now what? Well, whatever you like. From this stage, you truly can reinvent yourself into whatever you are passionate about in life. Like moving to a new state or starting a new job, you can build everything from the ground floor. Not only does this allow you to set your own goals and rules but, once you succeed, it will feel even more rewarding.
Once I decided to try out writing it felt like I had already lifted myself back up. Yes, I was entirely out of my comfort zone and had no idea where this was going to lead. It didn't feel as scary at the time since I genuinely had nothing to lose. You don't have to be at this point in your life to make a change, but you shouldn't look at rock bottom as the end. This moment in your life is the beginning of a new chapter. You now can rewrite the story you always wanted.
Change has to happen for us to grow. The problem is that most of us hate change, and for a good reason. We like our comfort zones; they keep us in a safe area that we know. Unfortunately, this area won't help you grow and develop. When you hit a low point in your life, you become a little more accepting of change. This place is not somewhere we want to stay in for the rest of our lives. We have to look at why we got here and what we are going to do to move forward. Maybe this means moving, finding a new career, or getting rid of toxic relationships.
It might not be enjoyable, and you are going to hit a lot of hardships. What I found comforting during this phase was the fact that I knew what it would look like to fail miserably. I had been there. Once you know what rock bottom looks like it almost loses some of its power. When you are no longer scared of that, you have the capability of risking more to find your success.
Don't live in negativity.
In your mind, everything that could go wrong ... Has. Life is miserable. The glass is no longer half full, but ultimately empty. If you have hit rock bottom these are just some of the thoughts that roll around in your head. The fact is, it could be worse. Not to be rude, but pitying yourself is never going to bring about change. So many people see the ugly in their life that they miss some of the beautiful moments. To reinvent yourself, you have to look at this as an opportunity and not a wallowing party.
Nothing ever comes from seeing the glass half empty. It might be difficult to understand, but you usually can find a positive to any situation. I am proof that losing everything is not necessarily a bad thing. I might not be at the successful stage I want to be in, but I am the happiest I have ever been in my life. My job is the dream I had since childhood, my relationship has never been better, and I wake up with a lust for life. If I had just sat in my pity and focused on the negative, I would never be where I am today.
Rock bottom is a state of mind (stick with me here). Technically, things could get worse. We visualize it this way because it is the lowest point we have ever seen. If you are having struggles finding your way out of this mindset you need to change your perspective. You are alive, relatively healthy (depending on the person), and still can improve. Switch up the conversation, and you might be able to benefit from this.
If you are going through a low point, you can always talk with me, friends, or anyone you feel comfortable discussing your situation. This phase will not last forever. You can take it as a clean slate and write a story you would be proud of. “Don't let the fear of striking out keep you from playing the game.” This quote is from a cheesy movie I watched as a teenager, but it rings true here. Feel like you have nowhere to go? Take a plunge and try something new. You already know how it could go wrong. Wouldn't it be amazing to see how it could go right?