We've all had moments in which we've felt completely hopeless and helpless. During those moments, you struggle to figure out how to move forward. Sometimes it doesn't seem like there's anything you can do to move forward. When all else fails, try helping someone else.
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Personal finance writer Cait Flanders discusses how she embraced this concept after chatting with a friend (David Cain of Raptitude). Flanders writes (emphasis ours):
I surrendered to the pain and confusion, waved my white flag and said, "I don't know what to do anymore."
His simple reply was one I've never forgotten:
When you don't know what to do, help someone else.
It was short, sweet and to the point, and I've carried those words forward with me ever since. Helping someone came in all different forms: from opening more doors to doing random acts of kindness, giving more of my time, listening intently and even just smiling more. I didn't know what to do for myself, but I could still offer parts of myself to others — and that has made all the difference.
It may sound like an old platitude, but when you shift your energy in this way, it does a couple of things. It distracts you from the awful things you can't control. Second, you regain control and motivation by making a decision to help. That's empowering. And finally, it just feels good. Sometimes even a brief moment of optimism can make a difference.
For more on this concept and to read Flanders' full post, head to the link below.
What to Do When You Don't Know What to Do [Cait Flanders]