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positive ways to deal with negative feelings

50 Positive Ways To Deal With Negative Feelings

*Originally published on my old blog, Style of Change, in 2017.*

Go within every day and find the inner strength so that the world will not blow your candle out.

– Katherine Dunham


Hi everyone! I’ll preface this post by saying that I am currently making a lot of positive lifestyle changes. Right now, I’m prioritizing my health and my happiness. Happiness is something that I constantly strive for, and I believe that it is within everyone’s reach.

I wish I could be happy all the time, but unfortunately life doesn’t work that way. It’s full of ups and downs, good days and bad days. In a perfect world, I’d be able to skip the bad days altogether, but I can’t. All I can do is make the most out of my good days while finding healthy and positive ways to deal with the bad ones. Today, I want to talk about coping strategies for negative feelings.

Whenever we’re sad, angry, or hurt, it’s easy to turn to unproductive or harmful coping strategies to temporarily make us feel better. Sometimes people drink too much alcohol, eat unhealthy food, or make reckless decisions in order to cope with their feelings. I’m not perfect; I definitely don’t always handle my feelings in the best ways. Recently, I’ve realized that I need to work on how I cope with being upset, depressed, or anxious.

I decided to create this list of 50 positive ways to cope with negative feelings. This list consists of my personal ideas, but you might think of other ones that work better for you. I just wanted to share my thoughts because I figured they might help someone.

Note: if you are having thoughts of hurting yourself or doing something extremely reckless, please seek professional help. You might not believe me, but I promise that there is someone out there who can help you. You deserve to be happy and well. 

Here’s the list!

1. Breathe deeply.

2. Go for a walk or run.

3. Lift weights.

4. Cook a healthy meal.

5. Draw, paint, or create something.

6. Read a book or magazine.

7. Write something.

8. Start a blog or website.

9. Listen to music.

10. Go to a concert.

11. Try hot yoga.

12. Clean your house or apartment.

13. Call a friend or family member.

14. Meet up with friends or family.

15. Start a mood journal and write in it every day. Write down how you’re feeling, what thoughts you’re having, and what triggered the negative feeling. Over time, see if you can notice patterns in what triggers your negative feelings.

16. Take a break from your phone, computer, and social media. Do something by yourself without negative influences from the outside world.

17. Write down all the things you’re thankful for.

18. Write down all the things you love about yourself.

19. Take time to think and understand how you’re feeling. Then, accept the feeling instead of trying to ignore it.

20. Try to turn your negative thoughts into positive ones.

21. Meditate.

22. Read some inspirational quotes.

23. Take a trip out of town to see something new. It could be for a day, a week, or however long you want.

24. Take a nap.

25. Let yourself cry if you need to.

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26. Get professional help if you need it.

27. Learn to play a musical instrument.

28. Teach yourself something new.

29. Look at happy photos.

30. Pray (if you’re religious).

31. Write a nice letter to yourself.

32. Do something kind for someone else.

33. Watch your favorite movie or TV show.

34. Watch funny videos on the internet.

35. Forgive yourself if you’ve made a mistake.

36. Take a bubble bath.

37. Paint your nails a new color.

38. Do your makeup.

39. Volunteer for a cause you are passionate about.

40. Take up a new hobby.

41. Go to an art gallery and study the artwork.

42. Go through your old things and donate them to Goodwill.

43. Go shopping and treat yourself to something nice (but not ridiculously expensive).

44. Write down your negative thoughts and then tear up or burn the paper.

45. Play with a pet.

46. Practice mindfulness.

47. Repeat positive affirmations to yourself.

48. Remind yourself that you are a beautiful person who is worthy of happiness and love.

49. Remind yourself that negative feelings are only temporary.

50. Make your own list of ways to help you deal with negative feelings.

Thanks so much for reading! I hope you found this post helpful.

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