Unhappy and unsure after a terrible ordeal? Are you making poor decisions only to ask yourself or others what to do about how to feel or what you've done?
Why not start with something extremely easy, which is just making yourself happy - because really, it's not that hard. If someone has let you down, be your own hero to pick yourself up. If you have done something you're not proud of, forgive yourself by being nice to yourself. Believe me, what I'm saying comes from a lot of experience, as I too have had my fill of bad moments and bad periods of my life that I desperately wanted to get out of and felt I didn't have a lot of hope.
The first trick is to be your own best friend. And if this seems alien to you, you should check it out.
1. Make yourself a nice meal complete with fancy serviettes and a special plate and cutlery as if you're dining out. Sit at the table, and be in the moment.
2. Whip up a tasty hot drink such as spiked hot chocolate. Some recipes here!
3. Learn a new (solitary?) card game, and play with REAL cards. Shuffle them, lay them out, enjoy doing something real rather than finding a game online.
4. Use your phone or camera to take some interesting pictures around your home or your city, then make an album of your favourites. Treasure the place you already live in.
5. Buy a journal or make one! Each day, write about the good things that happened to you that day. Make a point of going for five every day, and don't duplicate!
6. Alongside journaling, keep a dream journal. Embrace your dreams each morning when you wake up and document them in a separate journal. Each day this gets easier to remember dreams and even have fun with what you write.
7. Research one thing you didn't know about, such as sumo wrestling, gold panning, aromatherapy, just something out in left field that you might have passed over as an interest and study it. Get involved. Join a group online who knows about it or better yet a group from Meetup.com to get together face to face.
8. Read (a real book) about what has been depressing you lately, such as a breakup or death of a loved one. Come to terms with why it's been affecting you and how to move forward. (In my case years ago it was why I felt bad about being childless, and reading about how it really wasn't so bad.)
9. Put on music that you listened to when you were nine years old. What was your favourite band then? (Mine was ABBA.) Make a playlist of songs that used to soothe you and play it quietly at night when you go to sleep.
10. Learn something about your ancestry and create or buy something to wear such as a shirt, pin to show your identity. Be proud of who you are and where your roots stem from.
11. Make a hot bath complete with all the blitz - bubbles, oils, special soaps, light candles, play music that soothes you. Feel warm and safe and breathe in all that delicious aroma.
12. Buy a ukulele and learn how to play it. Seriously - it's the easiest instrument ever to learn how to play, easy to find, and starter ones cost about $20-$30US. (I eventually went from that to buying a Fender, I just became that interested!)
13. Buy a goldfish. Give it the nicest home. (It's fate would have otherwise been some irresponsible 5 year-old.)
14. Can't cook? Learn how to make something. Already do? Make something you haven't before with ingredients you never knew how to use.
15. Grow your own herbs and learn how to dry them and use them in the new dishes you're going to learn to make.
16. After having a hot shower, before getting out, run only cold water on just your feet.
17. Make personalized business cards. If this is something you can afford, just make a card with your name and phone number and email - not your business. Even if you don't work, having a personal card to give out can give you confidence (plus they're handy to just pass out on a moment's notice in case you meet a guy/girl!) Try Staples Copy Centre
18. Learn a new language, or try and master some phrases.
19. Learn tai-chi (ladies: belly dancing?) Even if a class isn't available, search YouTube or buy a DvD for private instruction. Download some ethnic music to go with your private class. Watch yourself in the mirror. Going through the motions is actually very sexy.
20. Do some abstract sketching. You can't do it wrong. If you start getting good at it, start using colour and frame what you're creating and hang it on the wall. Your art may even tell a story of what you're going through.
21. Consider a hairstyle change. Always wear it short?--try growing it out. Have it long, try cutting some of it off. Don't have bangs?--cut them in. Have bangs, cut them out. Girls: use a kerchief or headband during the pesky growing out stage until it's where you want. Changing your look, especially with your hair can make you feel like a whole different person.
22. Feed the squirrels. They love grapes! Go to your nearest park or outdoorsy spot and enjoy small animals relying on you for a snack.
23. Make your own jewelry. Try your local hobby shop for stones, beads, and jumprings, and/or take scraps of old jewelry you no longer wear and make a bracelet or necklace.
24. Donate your old clothes, DvDs, books to your nearest homeless shelter. You're cleaning out the past while others can benefit. Find out if they can use volunteers, and if so, schedule some time in the month to help in a soup kitchen.
25. Set up a potted lavender plant next to your window to enjoy when the breeze comes in.