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Everything hurts and I’m dying: Taking control and getting your life in order

     I was lying in bed a couple nights ago, and I knew that I needed to change my life. At some point, a quarter-life crisis is necessary, especially if you find yourself being unhappy. It is your choice to continue feeling that way, or start to make some changes for you to get better. 

     I decided that it was my time to get my life in order, because no one was going to do it for me. Here are some tips toward getting your life together, and hopefully get you on track to a happy and healthy life.

Hit the pillow for a little longer

     I know, it sounds impossible. You’re probably saying “oh, Cody, you don’t understand. I have so much homework and there aren’t enough hours in a day.” I’m not going to disagree with you, but 25 hours a day is unrealistic. The average adult at our age needs 7–8 hours of sleep a night. It isn’t impossible with proper time management and doing homework effectively.

     Go to bed and wake up at about the same time every day. The exact time isn’t terribly important- you could sleep from 10–5, or 12–8, or even 3–10. What’s important is keeping a regular schedule so your brain can maintain a healthy circadian rhythm. You’ll even start automatically waking up at that time, so your alarm won’t be a hassle every morning. This regularity, in turn, makes it easier to provide structure and order to your life.

The other things outside of media

     Social media is by far the number one way that people waste time when they should be doing something else. The amount of times I would just lay in bed and scroll through Instagram is just painful when you add up all the time I wasted. No, I don’t actually care about your picture-perfect vacation in Cancun. If I do my work, I’ll get a job and take myself there.

     Social media is a useful tool for keeping in touch with people and planning events, but you shouldn’t be hanging out there. Check that Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter once or twice a day and focus on living your real life. There are real people in the world outside of your phone that also have much better things to say.

Take a healthier stance

     Now I’m sure you’re thinking “ugh, not another issue telling me to get out of bed and go to the gym.” Of course the gym is always a good idea for weight loss and muscle gain, but there are so many different ways to be healthy.

     For physical health, try drinking the recommended amount of water every day. Typically it is 62oz but that may be higher depending on weight. Also you can supplement some unhealthy foods for others. Spinach is a great lettuce alternative, or apple slices instead of chips. The little things go a long way.

     Do you think you are socially healthy? Keeping up with your current friends is always a great way to boost your energy. Check up on the friends you have back home. Call your family who have been waiting five weeks for a phone call. It is always good to stay in touch with those you have and gain relationships with new people as you meet them.

     It sometimes falls off of our current mindset, but are you spiritually healthy? Some of us are strong supporters of our respective religions, but for others we may find our spirituality through the self, such as meditation or yoga. However you find yourself identifying for religious purposes, think about if you are happy in your current state. Are you finding yourself to be healthy?

Cut out the toxins

     Now there are many different things that could be considered toxic, but I am solely talking about the people that are toxic to you in any way. I have done a lot of consideration about my own self-esteem, and I discovered the people that play on that pain and find pleasure out of it. Why would we keep those type of people in our circle?

     It may sound strange to consider, but communication is a big step here. Talk to them. Tell them how they make you feel. Maybe they don’t realize the way they are hurting you, making you feel low, and they will be understanding. If not, then inquire why they do the things they do. Education is always important, and by asking them why, maybe you can challenge them to think differently and see the fault of their ways. If all else fails, drop them like their hot. You don’t need it, and you’ll be on the road to a happier life.

It is okay to say no

     For the same reason you should cut things out of your life, you also need to resist the urge to add things that will suck up your time and energy. Understand that anything you add to your life is potentially displacing other things you could be spending your time and energy on. Before taking on a new obligation, ask yourself—can I do this job effectively with enough time to do everything else? If you find yourself struggling, maybe saying no isn’t the end of the world.

Take chances

     People put themselves in boxes because society tells them to. You can do whatever you want, and you shouldn’t be ashamed about that. I was too scared to be vulnerable, whether that was to my friends, my family, or potential love interests. I was too afraid to take opportunities that were going to better my future because I didn’t want to fail.

     The most important thing about this article is that you are in control of your life. You are in control of the things you do and don’t do, so take those chances. It may be scary, but it can be so rewarding. If the worst thing that can happen is failing, then learn the lesson of failure: it is only uphill from there. You learn, you grow, and you thrive.

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Cody Deitz, Author

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