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You’re Not Alone: 6 Ways To Navigate Through Tough Times

woman of color staring off into distance

Life gets hard for us all during our pursuits to success. Here’s how to make it through the tough days like a champ.

I think some of the most stressful times in my life were when I was moving. I never moved growing up. I lived in the same house my entire life, and it’s still in my family today. My school ran from baby daycare up to 12th grade. So needless to say, that’s where I was. When I moved far, far away to college years ago, it was freeing. Well, freeing and terrifying. Those two feelings swapped back in forth with each other in dominance until my second or third month there. Since then, moving and meeting new people have always been important, exciting, yet stressful situations for me.

Each year the academic year ends, I set out on a different journey for the summer. After graduation, that freeing and terrifying feeling came back, stronger than ever. I didn’t have a mere three months to work on a project; I had the rest of my life to achieve whatever I wanted. This was a major landmark moment for me and I realized I needed to embrace it. Then, that intimidating thought was aided by techniques that I had picked up along the way.

1. We All Need Somebody to Lean On

There are a few things that humans rely on in times of need, which will never change. Human connection is a place to start. Through whatever you’re doing, don’t forget about your loved ones. Not so much as forgetting about them, but remember to stay in touch. There is really no excuse with all of the technology we have today. If you can Snapchat your friends, you can send your parents a picture. If you can update your Twitter or Facebook status, then you can text your aunt. If you are watching a Youtube video, you could be Facetiming your cousin. If you can upload an Instagram selfie, you can send a voice message to your BFF.

Having that familiar connection, even for a few minutes will help keep you grounded and secure and put away your anxiety and stress. Through studying abroad, moving across the country, or starting a new job, it’s important to still get some quality time in.

2. Find A Handy Helper

Choosing a friendly inanimate object didn’t come to me early but later in life when things got more chaotic. I’ve gone through specific jackets, stuffed animals, and little toys. Your baby blankie may be just the small, friendly comfort you may need. Ignore the haters! If you need a moment to yourself with your blankie, then take it! The great part about little tokens is that they are portable and depending on your object, even inconspicuous. The not so inconspicuous ones, well, they may have to stay at home.

3. Let It Go

Forgetting to breathe during a stressful phase is more common than you may think. With your brain thinking about so many other things, breathing is no longer at the top of your list. While you always manage to take small, shallower breathes, taking in a deep, full breath feels completely different. Going for a walk or doing meditation may help you with breathing techniques but always remember that a deep breath will do you well.

4. Keep It Clean

Staying organized with not just your bigger project, but also smaller, more mundane tasks too, is a great way of keeping a clear life and mind. Letting your counter space get cluttered or your clothes pile up on the floor will just become a metaphor for your life and you will feel that way as well! Clear your space, and clear your mind.

5. Mind Yourself

I’ve also learned that major life transitions are your opportunity to change yourself up. Often if your life is changing, your wardrobe will change as well. Holding on to your old clothes may actually hold you back, in my experience. Make your outside match your inside, beautiful and on point! (Speaking of your inside, this may also be the time to drop any bad habits you’ve been carrying for too long that may be inducing stress like eating junk food or not getting enough exercise.)

6. Find Release

All of your thoughts create energy in your body, whether you feel it or not, and it needs to be released. A BAUCE woman needs to learn how to manage everything on her plate, but also when to shut everything out. Brief exercise, even just a walk, can aid your mind. Singing or listening to music is another great release, and who knows, a BAUCE playlist could come out of it.

At the end of all of these tips and tricks, there isn’t much that can overcome the fear of the unknown. No matter how much I calm myself down, prepare, and tell myself everything will be fine, I still feel uneasy, and I’m learning to accept that. Life is full of new innumerate experiences, people, places, and things. There is no possible way for you to be ready for everything.

Life has seasons, some are good and others aren’t as good. But just like you may find that friends are for a season, reason, or a lifetime, you can’t control it. You’ll never know what life is going to bring you until you find yourself in it. Your journey as a BAUCE will be full of tests, things that are hard to manage, but you can’t fail as long as you own your experience.

BAUCE women may come to face tough times, but there is always a light after the darkness.

Featured Photo via Caique Silva
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