13 Sources of Inspiration When Life has You Down

Post written by Blended Family columnist Melissa Gorzelanczyk of Peace & Projects.

The highs and lows of life can feel like a roller coaster.

You’ve probably experienced a day that starts out smooth, but quickly hurtles to the bottom when a family member is cranky or stubborn or decides they don’t care about your feelings at the moment. I know it happens in our house. One bad mood can put a damper on the whole group. Those are the days when life reminds me that the good times don’t last.

But neither do the bad.

That’s the advice someone gave me during a low time in life. It’s proven true, time and time again. When the bad days come in our blended family, I remind myself the drama and bad feelings will pass, in time. And then I try to do something to help make that happen. (The list below can help.)

The truth is, I will never have a perfect marriage. I’ll never be a perfect step mom and my kids, like yours, will make mistakes that will embarrass the hell out of me.

That’s life.

I’ve found it bears repeating:

The good times don’t last … But neither do the bad.

Here are 13 places to turn for inspiration, motivation and a new perspective when life has you down.

  1. Words to live by board via Pinterest. Here’s a great quote I found by Marjorie Pay Hinckley: “The trick is to enjoy life. Don’t wish away your days, waiting for better ones ahead.” Amen!
  2. Empowering Parents archives. If you’re not sure what to do when your kids get bad grades or lie or disrespect you, the articles on Empowering Parents have given me many helpful ideas. Knowledge is power.
  3. Watch one of these inspiring TED talks (each video is under 9 minutes).
  4. National Geographic’s Photo of the Day. These images help me remember the world is bigger than my problems and challenges.
  5. 43 Things Zeitgeist. Users recount the action steps they used to achieve their goals. Inspired? Sign up for a list of your own 43 Things.
  6. TIME magazine’s 100 most influential people of the world. Check out the 2011 list or browse the archives.
  7. Inspiring stories on Reader’s Digest.
  8. Read a book from the inspiring books shelf on Goodreads.
  9. This article from Psychology Today: 10 Ways to Feel Better About Yourself.
  10. Browse the archives of Dear Photograph, a site that features family photos and stories, blending past and present into a creative work of art.
  11. 17 Ways to Lift Your Spirits via Reader’s Digest. Will eating seafood twice a week lift your mood? Sounds like a delicious experiment to me.
  12. Write a list about things you appreciate. Check out this post on 50 Lists to Write to Lift Your Spirits via Demanding Joy for ideas. Recalling things like the best days of your life or the best advice you’ve gotten can help turn around a down day.
  13. Finally, something all parents need: 55 Ways to Get More Energy via Zen Habits.

Where do you turn for inspiration during bad times?

(photo source)

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