How to Keep Emotional Baggage from Weighing You Down

There are times that life gets messy and things don’t as you expected. Last year, my husband of more than 13 years asked for a divorce. I moved across the country with my son and tried to rebuild my life. Now I have a certain amount of emotional baggage.

There times that I didn’t handle the situation particularly well, but I did learn that I can’t let my emotional baggage keep me from sticking to my work (even if, as a writer, it provides me with plenty to write about). Here are some ways that you can keep from being weighed down in your business and work when things don’t go well in your personal life:

What Do You Love About Your Work?

Focus on what is going well with your work. I tried to focus on developing opportunities when I was going through my divorce. I still like to look for the things I love about my work when I start to feel a little down. I can look at my accomplishments and remember why I do what I do. It helps me focus on something positive in my life so that I can overcome some of the other feelings I have.

Even if it’s not your work, think of something positive to focus on. What’s going well in another aspect of your life? What are some of your recent accomplishments? Do you have friends and family that offer you a chance to focus on the good?  Find what you love about your life so that you have a way to see the good and change the narrative a little bit.

Take Care of Yourself

One of the best things you can do when you hit a rough patch in your life is to take care of your health. Eat right. Get enough sleep. Exercise. When you take care of yourself, you are more likely to be able to effectively cope with emotionally trying times.

Don’t forget about your mental and emotional health when you look to get beyond your emotional baggage. Engage in self-care, whatever that looks like for you. You need to take time to relax and do the things you love. If you need help, ask for it. I know that it helped me a great deal to see a counselor when I was going through my divorce. Do what you can to be as emotionally healthy as possible so you build that resiliency that can help you later — and that means therapy and medication if needed.

Don’t Let Yourself Become too Distracted

When life starts weighing you down, it’s common to seek distractions that take your mind off things. However, these types of distractions can be detrimental to your well-being and to your work. Limit some of your distractions, and instead let your work take your attention, or let your family have more focus.

Distractions can allow you to escape your feelings for a time, but in many cases they suck your productivity. Look for ways to limit distractions so you can overcome emotional baggage and accomplish your work and feel that sense of accomplishment that keeps you from becoming ineffective.