CW: Mention of suicide, and suicide ideation.
Crisis. The word itself is daunting and complicated, presenting itself uniquely in the experience of each individual. Crisis can take on many forms: perhaps it may look like suicidal ideation, relationship turmoil, financial strain, personal loss, or overbearing stress. These are just a few of the many examples of crises, further demonstrating the diverse challenges we inevitably may face. But the one thing in common? We often affiliate crisis with danger, fixating on its negative consequences. We sometimes fail to acknowledge, however, the post-traumatic growth that may subsequently occur.
What if I told you that in times of adversity, crisis could serve as a catalyst for personal strength? Envision a time you were at your lowest. Perhaps you felt as though the weight of the world was on your shoulders, and hope appeared to be beyond reach. Now, imagine the possibility of emerging from this utter darkness, not entirely unscathed, but rather with newfound resilience. Crisis is transformative, and it is within these challenging moments that we can also come to recognize our ability to overcome many of life’s hurdles. Crisis is also an opportunity – a chance to establish connections, locate resources, discover support, and implement newfound coping strategies.
Following a crisis, many people often reassess their individual values, choices, and priorities. A sense of purpose often emerges, guiding individuals toward a road to self-discovery. Crisis, too, serves as an exceptional learning opportunity; perhaps enabling some to gain a better understanding of themselves and the world around them.
As we all know, crisis is unpredictable and may emerge at any given time. It is sudden, often throwing us into a state of uncertainty. In the midst of a crisis, it is reasonable to feel disheartened, hopeless, and exhausted. Let’s not minimize the very real and challenging aspects of crisis, but instead dive a bit deeper into how to go about converting crisis into opportunity. Consider the following:
- See Who’s There. In the midst of a crisis, who can you confide in?
- Foster a Support System. If you feel as though you do not have one, how can you go about developing one?
- Introspection. Hone in on your areas of strength. What is it that gets you through times of trouble? Who / What is most important to you?
- Normalize Help-Seeking. Practice being comfortable with seeking help, we all need it from time to time.
These four steps will undoubtedly be challenging, but I want to strongly emphasize that you are not alone in seeking such an opportunity. In fact, I have included some wonderful resources below that I hope you all can benefit from. I encourage you all to take care of yourselves and thank you for dedicating your time to read this post.
Click below to explore a list of 99 unique coping skills! Customize your own list with activities that resonate with you the most. Print it, download it, share it with others, or keep it to yourself. This is your chance to experiment and discover what works best for you on your journey towards well-being.
The National Alliance of Mental Illness (NAMI) is dedicated to ending the stigma surrounding mental health, providing support and connecting others to resources. The link below provides excellent tips on how to go about asking for help, and who to communicate with.
Now Matters Now highlights lived experiences, including tips and advice from people just like you. Click below to explore how others have survived painful emotions and read about the skills and support for coping with suicidal thoughts.
365 days a year, the 988 Lifeline is just a call, text, or chat away. Get connected with a trained, caring crisis counselor – 24/7, because your well-being knows no time limits.