10 Negative Situations Turned Positive

10 Negative Situations Turned Positive

Find the good in every day
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We all know that life is stressful. As a teenager, as a college student, and especially as an adult, countless issues arise every day. It can get overwhelming to try to step back from the task at hand and realize all there is to do. Instead of being intimidated by that fact, try and find the positive in it. Here are 10 positives within the negatives to balance out the bad vibes.

1. Your alarm went off

Okay yeah, Apple apparently has no idea how to find alarm sounds that don’t make you want to throw your phone across the room in the morning, but think about how far technology has come. You can figure out the weather, the news, the activities of your loved ones and so much more without even moving from your warm bed. These advancements make life so much easier and as a result, that pesky alarm isn’t so bad. In fact, I bet you’d prefer your favorite song to the classic ringing of an analog clock.

2. The weather sucks

So it’s a little chilly out. Or it’s raining...again. Here is the perfect opportunity to update or improve your wardrobe. Purchase a pair of fun rain boots to spice up the cloudy day, or look into a big scarf to keep you cozy on those unseasonably cold days. Rain boots weren’t even invented until the 19th century, so be thankful your feet aren’t wet and freezing like those guys.

3. You’re feeling a cold come on

Thank Hippocrates. Illness can stink but it has never been easier to conquer it. The human immune system has never been stronger (thanks genes!) and there are countless topical, oral, and inhalational methods by which to feel better. So if you’re getting sniffly, drink some tea or swallow a pill or rub some Vick’s on your chest and be grateful that the plague is said and done with.

4. Someone took the last donut

Alright, I understand the disappointment. Who was raised to leave an empty box on the counter? Also everyone knows you ask to split before you make off with the last of anything. Sometimes the best part of work is that free coffee cake in the break room. That right there is the problem. Instead of focusing your disappointment on the lack of junk food at work, try and find another positive. Since you missed the donuts, buy the box tomorrow and grab yourself the first one. Or treat yourself on the way home to a McDonald’s ice cream cone. After all, it is only $1.

5. You're stuck in traffic

The worst part of traffic is the unavoidable inconvenience of it. Take this time to find your own beach of sorts. Relax and enjoy the me-time. Life is hectic and the commute to work can be made more hectic by a bumper-to-bumper situation, but realizing there is is nothing you can do can create a sense of peace. Listen to an audiobook, tune into a radio show you never get to hear, or do something you would have never had time to do on the commute initially.

6. You thought it was Friday...it’s Wednesday

Who doesn’t love that Friday feeling? We all countdown to the weekend, with or without plans. There is nothing worse than realizing halfway through the day that it is not, in fact, Friday. However, treat that random weekday as a Friday! Watch a movie after work or take yourself to dinner. Looking forward to certain days makes the other days pale in comparison, and it shouldn’t be that way. Try and find something fun in each day, and don’t put all the pressure on poor Friday.

7. Your favorite item of clothing is dirty

You’re running late and cannot find that blue top anywhere. You search all over, dreading what you know to be true: it’s dirty. Instead of making yourself later than you already are or throwing a tantrum about how unfair life is (it’s really your fault you didn’t wash it sooner), find a new outfit. Break out the risky blouse you bought on a whim and have been hiding in the back of your closet. Or try and reinvent an old favorite with a different jacket or pair of jeans instead of the usual leggings. You’ve already been photographed in that blue top one time too many, and there are only so many scarves you can disguise it with. Try something new!

8. Everyone you follow on Instagram has a better life than you

Alright, everyone knows that social media is not real! Everyone can look like Blake Lively and Ryan Reynolds with a little filtering and a witty caption. Scrolling through social media all day every day will do wonders for your self esteem, and in the worst possible way. It really isn’t such a bad idea to unplug for a bit, or realize that what is posted is the 7th try at a decent picture. Unfollow toxic people (it really is that easy) or try and understand that social media represents the highlight reel, not the behind the scenes.

9. You failed an exam

There is nothing worse than studying your butt off and realizing you absorbed next to nothing. Actually, there’s one thing worse and that’s thinking you aced the test and finding out later that you didn’t. Here’s the thing: grades don’t define you. So yeah, failing an exam may cause you to have to work a little harder in the class and possibly reevaluate your studying methods, but that failure is not set in stone. Try and figure out why you failed, ask for extra help or extra credit and whatever you do, don’t give up. This bad grade is just a speed bump, but it could become a roadblock if you really let it get to you.

10. General expectations weren’t met

How many times has someone told you not to get your hopes up? That phrase kind of has the opposite effect doesn’t it? It’s always good to have dreams but sometimes, what we hope for isn’t what we planned on. Unfortunately, this is a universal truth of life and it can be a tough one to accept. Maybe your plan for a vacation goes completely wrong. Or you think your new boss is a jerk. There will always be people who you don’t get along with or obstacles that may seem too tall to climb. The easiest way to get over this is to realize it’s unavoidable. There will always be something to put you in a bad mood, and instead of counting down to the Fridays, savor every day or at least one thing in each day. Spending your whole life looking forward to the next thing will make for a long and boring existence. Your grand expectations will never be met if you think this way, so instead of looking for good days, find the good in every day.
Cover Image Credit: Margaret Geist

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To The Person Who Feels Suicidal But Doesn't Want To Die

Suicidal thoughts are not black and white.
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Everyone assumes that if you have suicidal thoughts that means you want to die.

Suicidal thoughts are thought of in such black and white terms. Either you have suicidal thoughts and you want to die, or you don't have suicidal thoughts and you want to live. What most people don't understand is there are some stuck in the gray area of those two statements, I for one am one of them.

I've had suicidal thoughts since I was a kid.

My first recollection of it was when I came home after school one day and got in trouble; and while I was just sitting in the dining room I kept thinking, “I wonder what it would be like to take a knife from the kitchen and just shove it into my stomach." I didn't want to die, or even hurt myself for that matter. But those thoughts haven't stopped since.

I've thought about going into the bathroom and taking every single pill I could find and just drifting to sleep and never waking back up, I've thought about hurting myself to take the pain away, just a few days ago on my way to work I thought about driving my car straight into a tree. But I didn't. Why? Because even though that urge was so strong, I didn't want to die. I still don't, I don't want my life to end.

I don't think I've ever told anyone about these feelings. I don't want others to worry because the first thing anyone thinks when you tell them you have thoughts about hurting or killing yourself is that you're absolutely going to do it and they begin to panic. Yes, I have suicidal thoughts, but I don't want to die.

It's a confusing feeling, it's a scary feeling.

When the depression takes over you feel like you aren't in control. It's like you're drowning.

Every bad memory, every single thing that hurt you, every bad thing you've ever done comes back and grabs you by the ankle and drags you back under the water just as you're about the reach the surface. It's suffocating and not being able to do anything about it.

The hardest part is you never know when these thoughts are going to come. Some days you're just so happy and can't believe how good your life is, and the very next day you could be alone in a dark room unable to see because of the tears welling up in your eyes and thinking you'd be better off dead. You feel alone, you feel like a burden to everyone around you, you feel like the world would be better off without you. I wish it was something I could just turn off but I can't, no matter how hard I try.

These feelings come in waves.

It feels like you're swimming and the sun is shining and you're having a great time, until a wave comes and sucks you under into the darkness of the water. No matter how hard you try to reach the surface again a new wave comes and hits you back under again, and again, and again.

And then it just stops.

But you never know when the next wave is going to come. You never know when you're going to be sucked back under.

I always wondered if I was the only one like this.

It didn't make any sense to me, how did I think about suicide so often but not want to die? But I was thinking about it in black and white, I thought I wasn't allowed to have those feelings since I wasn't going to act on them. But then I read articles much like this one and I realized I'm not the only one. Suicidal thoughts aren't black and white, and my feelings are valid.

To everyone who feels this way, you aren't alone.

I thought I was for the longest time, I thought I was the only one who felt this way and I didn't understand how I could feel this way. But please, I implore you to talk to someone, anyone, about the way you're feeling; whether it be a family member, significant other, a friend, a therapist.

My biggest mistake all these years was never telling anyone how I feel in fear that they would either brush me off because “who could be suicidal but not want to die," or panic and try to commit me to a hospital or something. Writing this article has been the greatest feeling of relief I've felt in a long time, talking about it helps. I know it's scary to tell people how you're feeling, but you're not alone and you don't have to go through this alone.

Suicidal thoughts aren't black and white, your feelings are valid, and there are people here for you, you are not alone.

If you're thinking about hurting yourself please call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255 or visit suicidepreventionhotline.org to live chat with someone. Help it out there and you are not alone.


Cover Image Credit: BengaliClicker

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13 Body-Shaming Behaviors We All Need To Stop

My body may be a temple, but I am the god to whom it is devoted; do not presume to tell me how I may decorate my alter.

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It's 2019, are we seriously still body shaming each other? The answer is yes, body shaming is everywhere both in discreet and obvious forms. While things like body positivity and self love are on the rise, we still have not left the negative opinions and ingrained shaming behaviors behind. Body shaming involves humiliating someone for how they look or judging someone based on their appearance, and while we have stopped the obvious forms such as calling someone "fat" or telling someone they're "ugly," there are many other ways of body shaming that plague us.

1. Skinny-shaming

There are many reasons a person could be skinny; they could have a fast metabolism, be super athletic, have suffered from an illness, or have an eating disorder, among other things. There are so many different body types out there, it would be insane for us to think that we can all look like each other. Just like you should not shame someone for being a little on the heavier side, you shouldn't shame someone for being on the lighter side either. You never know what the reason for how someone looks, so keep your negative opinions on it to yourself.

2. Indulgence-shaming

The amount of times I have heard women in my family say "a moment on the lips, a lifetime on the hips" is absurd. Or the way we admire someone for refusing desert as if that makes them a better person. There is nothing wrong with having a slice of cake, or a glass of wine, or an ice cream cone; anything is okay within moderation. There's nothing wrong with refusing desert, that is a person's own choice, but do not frown upon someone who decides they want a cookie after dinner.

3. "Real women have curves"

I know that this is meant to be body positive towards women who are curvier, and there is nothing wrong with trying to promote that, but saying it like this disregards every other body type there is. All women are real women; there is no one specific image that encompasses that. There are better ways to promote a body positive movement.

4. Wearing makeup vs. not wearing makeup

There's nothing wrong with wearing make up and there's nothing wrong with choosing to not wear makeup; it's a personal choice. People wear makeup for all different kinds of reasons: for fun, they like how it looks, etc. Wearing makeup does not make someone more or less professional looking and not wearing make up does not make someone a better or worse person. This is entirely up to the person wearing (or not wearing) the makeup; they are the only person who is allowed to have an opinion on what goes on their face.

5. "You're hot for a ______ "

This form of body shaming really needs to stop. Telling someone they're hot for a certain ethnicity, height, weight, or any other trait is not seen as a compliment. You're telling a person that they are only attractive when compared to a specific group of people and that because they are a member of that group, you were expecting them to be unattractive. Instead of this, tell someone they look great or that they're beautiful.

6. Idolizing specific body types

It's estimated that only 5% of people have body types similar to those often portrayed in the media; that leaves 95% of people unrepresented in the public eye. Idolizing a certain body type is nothing new; it has been occurring for centuries. During the renaissance, a fuller figure with pale skin was idolized as a symbol of wealth and beauty, in the 1920s, having a "boyish" androgynous look was in style, in the 1940s, Marilyn Monroe's hourglass figure took the world by storm, and then there was the "heroin chic" of the 1990s. We have to stop doing this because it tells anyone who does not fit the mold of the ideal that they are not as significant.

7. Judging others for "conforming" to societal norms regarding appearance

Pressure to conform to society's norms when it comes to appearance is immense, however, we need to stop shaming those who do. If the media says that today's trend is to get a bob haircut with blond highlights and your friend decides to do just that, tell her it looks good and leave her be. Maybe she likes her hair like that but had never thought of it before she saw it in the media. Conforming to societal norms does not make someone a bad person; there's a reason trends like the "lob" and beach waves are popular: people like how they look. What does it matter to you what someone else chooses to do with their appearance?

8. Defining beauty as a look rather than a state of mind

You could get all the plastic surgery in the world and have the closet of a queen, but if you don't feel beautiful on the inside, none of that is going to help you. Beauty is a state of mind; it is being comfortable and happy with yourself. Beautiful has no specific look; but it does have a specific feeling; the feeling of loving yourself, and if getting a nose job will make you feel good on the inside as well as the outside then go for it. We need to start promoting beauty as a state of being rather than as an outer appearance.

9. Comparing someone's body to a food item

Calling someone's stomach area a "muffin top" implies that it is round and puffy, and telling someone that they're body is pear-shaped immediately puts them into a box that will feel stuck in. Abs are fantastic and great for you if you have them, but just because you don't doesn't mean you should be reduced to the description of a baked good. We often times do this to ourselves, we call our midsections a "muffin top" or say that we look like a potato or a puffy donut; not only should we stop comparing other people's bodies to food items, we should stop comparing ourselves to them too.

10. Spreading "body trends" on social media

Thigh gap, ab crack, bikini bridge, toblerone tunnels, a4 paper craze, ribcage bragging--it all needs to stop. There is nothing wrong with showing off your body in whatever way you choose to, but do not promote certain "trends." On instagram there are over 50K posts with #thighgap tagged and over 35K with #bikinibridge tagged. There is no one specific type of body that we should all be conforming to, don't start a following for trends that could be potentially dangerous for some people to achieve. The only "trend" we should be spreading is #bodypositivity which shows love for all bodies.

11. Judging someone based on what they are wearing

Just because a person chooses to show no skin does not make them a "prude" or "no fun" just as showing skin does not make someone a "slut" or "asking for it" or "need to cover up." If someone is aroused by a shoulder or a foot or a mid drift, that is something they need to address within themselves; that is not the fault of the person wearing the article of clothing that shows that body part. A person wanting to show off their body does not make them any less of a person than someone who chooses to cover their body entirely and vice versa. My body may be a temple, but I am the god to whom it is devoted; do not presume to tell me how I may decorate my alter.

12. Criticizing someone for having plastic surgery done

If getting a nose job or a boob job or a face lift makes someone else feel better about themselves, then let them be. The only reason to stop someone from getting plastic surgery is if they are doing it to please anyone other than themselves. Just like with makeup, it is entirely an individual's choice with if they want to have none, a little, or a lot. Some people go their whole life without plastic surgery and they are beautiful and some people go under the knife yearly and they are beautiful too. Stop shaming those that choose to alter their appearance for their own personal reasons.

13. The pressure for women to stay in shape while pregnant and the concept of "pre-baby bodies"

Exercise is great during pregnancy, it keeps you and your baby healthy, but within moderation. Women--particularly those in the third trimester--are not supposed to be doing heavy activity while pregnant. Gaining weight during pregnancy is normal and in fact healthy; it means that you are taking in enough nutrients for yourself and your baby and that you are growing a healthy child. Staying fit while pregnant is perfectly fine, but it also okay to kick back on the couch with a burrito. You are growing a tiny human inside of you, you're not expected to have a six pack while your body is under that much stress. Also, the expectations that women must return completely to how they looked before pregnancy is absurd. The female body is under extreme amounts of stress and undergoes extraordinary changes during pregnancy, it will likely never be completely the same after giving birth which makes this "pre-baby body" standard all the more insane.

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