How to Hang onto Hope When It’s Impossible

If you look up National Day of Hope, you’ll find many different days—many different cases where hope is needed. The month of April has been designated the Month of Hope by Mothers In Crisis. Why so many? Does that mean that hope is in short supply? No. Those expressions of hope are reminders. Reminders that hope is something we must practice in order to hold onto. In good times and bad, hope is both a salve and a propellant. When times are bad there are ways you can hang onto hope when it’s impossible.

sunlight bursting through dark clouds, one reminder to hang onto hope when it's impossible. Read on for ways to help you practice hope.

Hope is being able to see that there is light despite all of the darkness.

Desmond Tutu

Lean In

Lean into the tough moments. Accept the suckitudinousness and get through it. Bad things happen. You can’t stop them. Ignore them at the expense of an opportunity to grow and learn. Usually an ignored problem comes back, magnified.

Yes, there are some situations you should run away from, but if your life (physical, emotional, financial, etc.) isn’t in danger, face the situation. It isn’t that hope doesn’t exist when times are bad, it’s that you lost your hope. But you can hang onto it, or even find it again. Here are some steps that will help.

Hope is the thing with feathers 
That perches in the soul 
And sings the tune without the words 
And never stops at all.

Emily Dickinson

Evaluate 

Learn from the bad times. How is this like a time in the past? What did you do then? Will that work this time? 

What can you learn that will help you in the future? Write it down. The wisdom you gain in this step, will make the next time easier.

Get rid of the crap

Don’t let negatives from yourself or others sit and fester. You wouldn’t let a pile sit in the middle of your home, would you? Take the metaphorical or psychological crap out to the trash.

Turn on Your Creative Juices

“In a time of destruction, create something.” 


― Maxine Hong Kingston

Ask yourself, what would it take to turn this into a positive or a gain. What’s the craziest way you could accomplish that? Work from there, you’ll see things from a new perspective.

Let People In

Supportive people are out there. Maybe they are friends or family. It could be there’s an organization or group that can give you what you need. Ask for help. They don’t know what you need until you tell them. Let them give you the support you need.

Care for Yourself

If you’re not getting the rest or nutrition or fluids or exercise you need, you will have a more challenging time. Give yourself the love and care you need to deal with the issue.

Find beauty, joy, or laughter. Do all three. These things soothe and recharge the soul. You’ll be stronger, healthier.

A purple iris, the flower of hope and one more reminder to hang onto hope when it's impossible. Read on for ways to help you practice hope.

Give Up And Move On

It’s okay. You’re not weak. Sometimes there are bad situations that won’t get better. You move on and do your best not to go to that place any more. You got this!

Follow Your Heart

“Listen to the mustn’ts, child. Listen to the don’ts. Listen to the shouldn’ts, the impossibles, the won’ts. Listen to the never haves, then listen close to me… Anything can happen, child. Anything can be.” 


― Shel Silverstein

During challenging times, we often overthink. We feel there’s an obligation, a should do, a right thing to do. If there’s the right thing to do and the thing that makes your heart sing, follow your heart. Happiness lies on that path and no other.


Let hope soothe your soul when it’s weary of the day-to-day battles. Hang onto hope so it can propel you to better days. Remember, when you hang onto hope when it’s impossible, anything can happen. Anything can be. What’s your best way to reconnect with hope when it seems impossible?

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