How to Stop Procrastinating and Actually Get Stuff Done

Author Article

How to stop procrastinating

I can be a pretty bad procrastinator.

In school, I put off writing essays until the day before they were due. At home, the dishes pile up and out of the sink more often than I’d like. Putting things off can be a real problem in my life and I know I’m not alone.

I’ve talked to other procrastinators of all types—from slacker students to fearful entrepreneurs to creatives who religiously refuse to start a project until there’s a deadline staring them in the face. And the one thing I’ve learned is that procrastinators never learn.

For entrepreneurs, especially, procrastination can become a regular hurdle, making it necessary to take certain steps to ensure it doesn’t stand in the way of you getting your idea off the ground.

But the first step on the road to recovery is to understand why it is we put things off.

Why do we procrastinate?

Contrary to popular belief, it’s not necessarily because we’re lazy.

According to Joseph Ferrari, a professor of psychology at DePaul University, there are three main breeds among procrastinators:

  • The Thrill Seeker procrastinates to experience the last minute rush, like they’ve just defused a bomb with only seconds to spare.
  • The Avoider procrastinates because they’re afraid of being judged, of the consequences of failure or, believe it or not, success.
  • The Indecisive procrastinates as a byproduct of perfectionism, feeling it necessary to seize every second they have to do the best job they can.

Most of us probably fall into certain categories for different things.

And every now and then we resolve to get organized, to do things in advance, but it’s only a matter of time until we relapse. The only way to beat procrastination is to be conscious of it in our lives and to develop ways to work around it.

So, if you have the tendency to put things off and are looking for a way to change, here are some proven strategies you can adopt.

Create last-minute panic in the present

One of the reasons we procrastinate is to experience the thrill of racing against the clock. Somehow we’ve conditioned ourselves to think we do our best work during those final moments leading up to a deadline.

These “near deadline experiences” force us to make decisions that we would otherwise put off and to work at peak efficiency. Because, well, we have no other choice.

One way to induce last minute panic months in advance is to set due dates well before your actual deadline to deceive yourself into completing tasks earlier.

If false deadlines don’t work, break your workload down into smaller tasks and set a timer as you attempt to finish each one. Racing against the clock is a good way to create pressure when there is none.

1-Click Timer is a simple chrome extension that pits you against a timer to get things done.

1-click timer

Any timer will work, but the point here is to help yourself stay focused on the task at hand and simulate the pressure of cutting it close. If something “should only take an hour”, this is one way to ensure it does.

Write down your plans (preferably in pencil)

Many procrastinators put things off because they like to keep their options open and let life (or a lack of time) force them into making decisions and finishing what they started.

For procrastinators, calendars are poorly maintained and To Do lists become To-Morrow lists. It’s important for chronic procrastinators to organize themselves in a way that accommodates flexibility, improvisation and the inevitable chaos of life.

This is why I recommend Trello— it gives you full control over the way you manage tasks, your team, a project or an entire business venture. And it’s free.

Try this Trello board template, based on the system I currently use to keep my life together, if you need a place to start.

trello board template for procrastinators

Simply create your board, add tasks as cards to different lists, assign due dates if necessary, or even make your cards slowly fade into nothingness if you ignore a task for too long. Trello even comes with a calendar view to give you an outline of what’s ahead that lets you move due dates around with a simple drag-and-drop.

Tip: Start every item on your To Do list with a verb to paint a specific picture of each task. We do actions (“Write product description”), not nouns (“Product description”).

Choose productive ways to procrastinate

Procrastinators typically favor instant gratification. Everything else is a problem for another day.

Naturally, one way to battle procrastination—especially when it comes to mundane tasks like scheduling social media posts—is to find a way to pair what you need to do with something you’d rather be doing.

Listen to music or a podcast, watch your favorite movie on Netflix, do something else that doesn’t require your full attention. Find some way to whistle while you work.

Another strategy is to practice structured procrastination: embracing procrastination and opting for a productive alternative to whatever it is you’re putting off.

Just because it’s not “what you’re supposed to be doing”, doesn’t mean it’s not productive—like reading a blog post to learn a new skill instead of doing the dishes, or building your ecommerce business instead of finishing that report for your boss. But, whenever possible, limit yourself to tasks that contribute to the same goal as the thing you’re putting off.

Instead of staring at a blank screen trying to come up with a name or tagline for your business idea, why not use that time to do something else that’ll bring you closer to your goal? Like shopping around for the perfect theme for your online store?

Ride out the momentum of “starting”

“Starting” is oftentimes a procrastinator’s kryptonite: The mere thought of it makes us weak. But once we climb that mountain and get in our zone, stopping is just as hard as starting.

Everyone’s got a different ritual for getting into their zone, whether it means relocating to a specific spot in your house or waking up at 5 am to get some work done.

A useful trick that works for a lot of people (including myself) is to listen to the same song on repeat to encourage a state of intense focus. Just try to keep it light on the lyrics.

Ryan Holiday, along with other successful entrepreneurs, is an advocate of this strategy:

Melodic music, played on repeat, puts you in a heightened emotional state—while simultaneously dulling your awareness to most of your surroundings.

Adopt a ship-it mentality

Procrastination is often attributed to laziness. But even obsessive workaholics put things off too, though for a different reason.

Many an entrepreneur has been paralyzed by the pursuit of “perfect”. And it can be a real time-waster trying to get everything exactly right.

Get used to going live without all the kinks worked out, especially if it’s something you can easily revisit later after soliciting feedback or leveraging data to make more informed improvements.

Prioritize tasks and make a plan of attack based on what should get out the door ASAP, what you have to wait on, and what you need to do before you can move on.

Sending emails is an example of a low effort, often essential task that’s easy to put off. Waiting on a reply has the potential to become a bottleneck. Keep these things in mind and fight through the desire to put it off.

Conquer procrastination (now rather than later)

Procrastinators are typically flexible people, good under pressure, and know how to improvise in the face of chaos. After all, they put themselves in tight situations on a daily basis.

But there’s an ugly side to it too. The quality of your work might suffer and the compounding effect of unnecessary stress can negatively impact your health. So it’s an important problem to address while you can.

The desire to put things off will inevitably rear its ugly head throughout your life. But the next time it does, stare it down and tell it, “Not today”. Because the best way to invest in your future is always in the present.

If you’ve got other tips for kicking procrastination to the curb, I’d love to hear them in the comments.

Some People Can Thrive After Depression, Study Finds

Author Article
We may think of depression as a recurring condition with a gloomy prognosis, but findings from one study indicate that nearly 10% of adults in the United States with major depression were thriving ten years later. The findings, which appear in Clinical Psychological Science, suggest that some people with depression experience more than a reduction in depressive symptoms over time – they can achieve optimal psychological well-being.

Writing for The Conversation, lead investigator Jonathan Rottenberg, a researcher at the University of South Florida, discusses how clinical scientists often neglect the potential for positive outcomes among individuals with depression.

“Depression can be a lifelong problem. Yet as we dug deeper into the epidemiological findings, we also saw signs of better outcomes – an aspect that we found is rarely investigated,” he says.

Although current clinical practice emphasizes symptom reduction and achieving an absence of stress, evidence indicates that patients prioritize other measures of well-being.

“They want to love and be loved, be engaged in the present moment, extract joy and meaning, and do something that matters – something that makes the pain and setbacks of daily life worthwhile,” says Rottenberg.

Rottenberg and his colleagues found that a substantial percentage of those with depression can achieve just that.

Using data from the Midlife Development in the United Stated (MIDUS) study, the researchers examined outcomes in a nationally representative sample of middle-aged adults. The participants completed phone interviews and questionnaires, including a measure of depression and a battery of nine facets of well-being including autonomy, environmental mastery, personal growth, positive relations with others, purpose in life, self-acceptance, life satisfaction, and negative and positive affect.

A total of 239 participants in the sample met the criteria for depression, meaning that they experienced depressed mood most of the day or every day, as well as additional symptoms, for at least 2 weeks out of the previous 12 months. The researchers reviewed data from the initial screening and a follow-up survey completed 10 years later.

At the 10-year follow-up, half of the participants reported experiencing no major symptoms of depression in the past 12 months, and almost 10% of the participants with a history of depression were thriving. To count as thriving, a participant had to show no evidence of depression and score higher than 75% of nondepressed MIDUS participants on the nine factors of psychological well-being.

Higher well-being at beginning of the study predicted thriving 10 years later, but severity of depression did not. Specifically, depressed adults who reported higher well-being at the beginning of the study had a 30% chance of thriving, compared with a 1% chance for participants who had low well-being when they began the study. Depressed participants with higher well-being at the beginning of the study and who were thriving at the end of the study had larger increases in well-being over time than did other depressed participants.

These findings could influence how mental health professionals think about the prognosis associated with depression, as well as how they communicate this prognosis to patients. The study suggests that treatment could focus on strategies for optimizing well-being optimization that go beyond just managing symptoms.

“The task now for researchers is to follow these encouraging signs with systematic data collection on how people thrive after depression,” says Rottenberg.

Reference

Rottenberg, J., Devendorf, A. R., Panaite, V., Disabato, D. J., & Kashdan, T. B. (2019). Optimal well-being after major depression. Clinical Psychological Science. https://doi.org/10.1177%2F2167702618812708

For All The 20-Something Girls Who Feel Like Screwups

Author Article

Apparently, I have been doing my twenties all wrong.

Apparently, I’m supposed to raise my standards in my twenties. I’m not supposed to fall for anyone and everyone who gives me the slightest bit of affection. I’m not supposed to stare at my phone for days on end, waiting for a specific text from a specific person. I’m not supposed to get excited when someone puts the absolute minimum amount of effort into me. I’m not supposed to accept such poor treatment when I deserve so much more.

Apparently, I’m supposed to stop caring about people who couldn’t care less about me. I’m supposed to remove toxic people from my world — and from my mind. I’m supposed to stop replaying the moments we spent together. I’m supposed to stop asking myself what went wrong. I’m supposed to accept they are bad for me. I’m supposed to move on. I’m supposed to forget about them, even though I loved them.

Apparently, I’m supposed to practice self-care. I’m not supposed to stuff myself with fast food and caffeine and alcohol. I’m not supposed to put off doctor appointments, hair appointments, therapist appointments. I’m not supposed to care about my work, my friends, my family, more than I care about my own mental health. I’m not supposed to treat myself so terribly.

Apparently, I’m supposed to love myself. I’m not supposed to delete selfies. I’m not supposed to criticize myself every time I walk passed a mirror. I’m not supposed to struggle with my self-worth. I’m supposed to stand tall. I’m supposed to feel comfortable walking around without my makeup or my hair done. I’m supposed to appreciate my authentic, true self.

Apparently, I’m supposed to take risks. I’m supposed to leave my comfort zone. I’m supposed to put myself out there. I’m not supposed to lounge in my bedroom all day long. I’m not supposed to cancel plans at the last second to watch Netflix alone instead. I’m not supposed to hide myself away when I could be seeing some friends, seizing the day.

Apparently, I’m supposed to travel. I’m supposed to see the world. I’m not supposed to spend all of my time in the same town. I’m not supposed to turn down vacation days. I’m not supposed to repeat the same routine day after day without any variation.

Apparently, I’m supposed to get my life together. I’m supposed to come up with a five-year plan. I’m supposed to figure out what I want from this world and how I’m going to work on getting it. I’m not supposed to fumble through each day. I’m not supposed to have so many questions and so few answers. I’m not supposed to feel like such a screwup.

Apparently, I haven’t been doing any of the things I’m supposed to be doing in my twenties. I haven’t been living up to expectations. But I am trying my best. I am putting effort into bettering myself every single day. I might not be able to call myself perfect — but I can call myself a work in progress. I can call myself a fighter.

A Reminder To Always Take Care Of Yourself

Author Article

No one can argue the importance of self-care. It is everywhere-from Facebook memes to Buzzfeed shopping lists to TV shows chanting “treat yaself.” And, it IS important. Without self-care, we will undoubtedly crash, burn out, or just merely exist. But Self-care is more than wine, pizza, and shopping (even though those are crucial too!), and, to be helpful, it has to be more than that.

Self-care is of course, at the most basic level, treating yourself. Allowing yourself to have that spa day. Freeing yourself to eat a bowl of ice cream or a whole pizza, or drink a bottle of wine. It’s letting yourself splurge and buy that pair of shoes, or that book you’ve been wanting to immerse yourself in, or that blanket you’ve been dreaming of cuddling up in and forgetting the world.

But, it goes deeper than that. self-care is allowing yourself to use those vacation days at work to take a break, even if it’s just to lay in bed and binge a new show. It is allowing yourself to cancel plans or obligations that you are not feeling so that you can instead do something that you are feeling. It is knowing that just because you received an invite doesn’t mean you have to say yes. self-care is freeing up the time and money needed to let yourself invest in your hobbies and passions.

And speaking of hobbies, self-care is doing what you love and giving a damn about what other people think. Too often we give up on what makes us happy because we lack the support of the people around us or the confidence to pursue it regardless of anyone’s thoughts. If knitting makes you happy, knit. If makeup makes you happy, learn as much as you can and be a badass at it. If dancing and concerts and clubs make you happy, then go out and dance until the early morning. Or, if you’re like me, and love your alone time and TV binge-watching, then let yourself do it, even when people say it is a lame, boring way to spend your time. Do what makes you happy and recharge your batteries and allow yourself to find happiness in life as often as you can.

Self-care is exploring the world and things around you. There is so much out there, and you’ll be surprised at what you were missing out on all this time. Try that new cuisine, go on that trip, read/watch a new genre of book/movie. Wake up and watch the sunrise over the ocean at the beach. Or stay up late in a field to watch the shooting stars and dancing fireflies. Or go for a walk in the woods and listen to the wind in the trees and the birds singing their lullabies.

Self-care is letting go of toxic people. It is one of the most important parts of self-care. Too often we keep people in our lives out of obligation or simply because we are scared to be alone. Loyalty is a trait that should be earned, not simply given out all willy-nilly. Friends, family, or partners-it doesn’t matter. If they are toxic or bitter or unsupportive or rude or emotionally draining…or anything else that brings bad energy into your life…let them go! The very essence of self-care is putting yourself first. Making sure that you are taking control of your life and making sure that you are allowing yourself to be happy and successful. And sometimes that means letting people go, no matter who they are or how long they have been around.

And piggybacking on that, self-care is not allowing yourself to settle for less. It is demanding what you need and taking what you want. Self-care is not letting second best be what you accept in any part of life. It’s not taking a backseat in your own life. Self-care is realizing when you are someone’s “maybe” or backup plan and making yourself move on to find someone who makes you their number one, who chooses you first. Self-care is knowing what will make you happy and not being afraid to ask for it.

Self-care is realizing your dreams and pursuing them. It doesn’t matter how crazy or big they are. It doesn’t matter what other people say or what roadblocks that may arise. Dreams are what keep us going. Dreams are what make life more than mundane routines. And yes, your dream may never come true. You may never achieve it, but at least you can say you tried. If you want to climb Everest, be the President, be the next Kim K, or just be a parent, then for God’s sake try. Give it your all. You never know what dreams just might come true. And the hope of what can be is what keeps us going, even when life gets hard.

Self-care is being honest. Self-care is not being afraid to quit. If something is not the right fit, then it is ok to stop. Quit your job or school, change your major, leave your relationship, move to a new city. It is ok to quit; it is ok to leave. Give yourself permission to start over anytime you find yourself anything less than happy, satisfied, and fulfilled.

Self-care is learning to love yourself. It is learning to be alone until you find the right person. Self-love is learning to put yourself first. Self-love is finally admitting to yourself that you deserve love and happiness. It is allowing yourself to believe you deserve everything and more.

And lastly, self-care is knowing balance. Walking that line between taking care of yourself and enjoying life and going overboard. Know your limits and weaknesses. Self-care is accepting your flaws and working on them. Knowing your means and making the most of them. Life is a balancing act, and self-care, when done wrong, can dig a deeper hole than it helps.

And in case you need to hear it like I did, you are amazing. You are loved. And you deserve nothing less than the most extraordinary life you can imagine for yourself. And you are free to do, or not do, whatever you think is needed for you to be happy, successful, and fulfilled.

7 Words You Should Immediately Stop Using To Describe Yourself

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We all know the words we say to others matter. But sometimes we forget that the words we say to and about ourselves are equally important. We need to be careful about the way we describe who we are. If you wouldn’t assign a word to a friend or other loved one, you probably shouldn’t assign it to yourself, either. Keep scrolling for seven specific words that you should stop using to talk about Y-O-U.



1. Alone: If you’ve just gone through a breakup with a significant other, have experienced a loss in your family, or are just feeling generally down in the dumps, it can be tempting to feel — and even say — that you’re all alone. Remember, though, that if you’re sharing these feelings with a friend or other confidante, you’re far from lonely. If you feel lonely, stop thinking of yourself as alone and reach out for support. “Perhaps it would help to reach out or let people in your life know that you need something versus trying to figure it out alone,” licensed psychologist Sue Sexton says. “You are not alone!”

2. Stupid: Licensed marriage and family therapist Ibinye Osibodu-Onyali tells us that she hears this word all too often. “If you say to yourself that you are stupid, you will trigger a negative feeling about yourself, as well as negative thoughts about yourself,” Osibodu-Onyali says. “Too many negative thoughts can lead to a drop in self-confidence or self-esteem.” Give yourself a little credit. Allow the necessary room to make mistakes so that you can relieve the pressure you put on yourself and be a little more compassionate to yourself.

3. Lazy: “Too many of us call ourselves out when we can’t rise early to exercise, take on one more task at home or at work, or just keep up with someone else,” says Karen Azeez, certified holistic health coach and author of The Kindfulness Solution. “At this point, we should see if we just need more down time, sleep, motivation, or information instead of judging ourselves harshly.” Don’t conflate exhaustion or overwhelm with habitual laziness. You’re only lazy if you choose to be.

4. Just/Only: When asked what you do for a living or even for fun, don’t hedge your answer with the word “just” or “only.” You’re not “just” a student or “only” an assistant or spending your weekend “just” hanging out. Own who you are and what you do. “These qualifiers undermine your power and awesomeness, serve as an apology for something that requires one, and broadcast low self-esteem or fake humility,” says Nikki Bruno, a power coach, speaker, and author.

5. Sorry: Women, in particular, are in the habit of making themselves apologetic way too often. While saying that you’re sorry may seem harmless — maybe even polite — you probably say it more than necessary. Executive coach and Development Corps founder Kate Gigax encourages you to be mindful that you’re not saying sorry for things that aren’t yours to own. Consider replacing “I’m sorry” with “thank you.” For instance, try saying, “Thank you for your patience” instead of “I’m so sorry I’m late!”

6. Sensitive: “By labeling your thoughts and feelings as sensitive, you’re not only judging yourself, but you’re instantly negating your thoughts and feelings,” therapist and life coach Tess Brigham notes. “There’s nothing wrong with having emotions.” Even if you’re convinced that you have more feels than the average human, you don’t owe it to anyone to justify your behavior. Instead, allow yourself to experience those emotions, so you can move past them when you’re ready.

7. Hopeless: No matter how low you’re feeling or how much you feel you need to grow or improve, we ask you to never, ever label yourself this way… and the experts back us up. “Reinforcing that you’re growing and learning is a far more positive, motivating, and effective message than expecting mastery out of the gate and beating yourself up over it,” life and career coach Sally Anne Carroll says.

This article originally appeared on Brit + Co.

How You Can Improve Your Emotional Well-Being With This One Activity

Author Article

Bad movies have robbed nature of some of its most impressive phenomenons, but I think sunsets might have gotten the worst of it. In film, they’re usually meant to kickstart one of two moments: a moment of mindfulness where the protagonist arrives at a crucial instance of clarity, or the moment when two starry-eyed lovers finally figure out how copulation works. It’s redundant, cheesy and potentially completely accurate.

Several studies have recently come out championing the correlation between observing natural beauty and longevity. Both in the abstract and in more tangible biological ways.

Light Exposure and balance

Researchers have found that early light exposure can help us regulate our metabolism. Additionally, a study conducted by the  University of Alberta in Edmonton, Canada disclosed increased instances of weight gain during the winter months,  in part due to the absence of light. Of course, there are plenty of adverse effects associated with overexposure, but the proposed physical profits of sun rays aren’t as frequently discussed.

Sunlight leads to surges of the mood-boosting hormone known as serotonin. When levels of serotonin become too low, you have a much higher risk of developing seasonal affective disorder; a condition more than 20% of Americans suffer from each year. Light therapy is being considered more and more as a method of better managing conditions like insomnia,  seasonal depression and even major non-seasonal depression. 

There is also a freshet of somatic benefits to penciling in a morning or two to take in a sunset. A 2008 study furthered research intended to confirm the major role sun rays play in bone health.  Exposure to the ultraviolet-B radiation produced by the sun causes the skin to create Vitamin D.

“Unlike other essential vitamins, which must be obtained from food, vitamin D can be synthesized in the skin through a photosynthetic reaction triggered by exposure to UVB radiation. The efficiency of production depends on the number of UVB photons that penetrate the skin, a process that can be curtailed by clothing, excess body fat, sunscreen, and the skin pigment melanin,”  says the study’s lead author M. Nathaniel Mead.

According to Felice Gersh, MD watching sunsets can reduce the stress hormone called cortisol. Moreover, it causes surges in melatonin production, a hormone that decreases oxidative stress and inflammation. More than the studied biological effects, setting aside time to appreciate beautiful natural occurrences promotes other healthy activates, like mindfulness and patience. You can also enjoy sunrises while you do other physical activities, like jogging, or biking.

The emotional advantages of observing a sunset have been presented several times, via various mediums over the years and the results seem to speak for themselves.

10 Things You Should Do Every Day To Improve Your Life, According To Science

Ladders Article

These are the 10 things that scientific research shows can help improve your life.

1. Get out in nature

You probably seriously underestimate how important this is. (Actually, there’s research that says you do.) Being in nature reduces stress, makes you more creative, improves your memory and may even make you a better person.

2. Exercise

We all know how important this is, but few people do it consistently. Other than health benefits too numerous to mention, exercise makes you smarterhappier, improves sleepincreases libidoand makes you feel better about your body. A Harvard study that has tracked a group of men for more than 70 years identified it as one of the secrets to a good life.

3. Spend time with friends and family

Harvard happiness expert Daniel Gilbert identified this as one of the biggest sources of happiness in our lives. Relationships are worth more than you think (approximately an extra $131,232 a year.) Not feeling socially connected can make you stupider and kill you. Loneliness can lead to heart attack, stroke and diabetes.

The longest lived people on the planet all place a strong emphasis on social engagement and good relationships are more important to a long life than even exerciseFriends are key to improving your lifeShare good news and enthusiastically respond when others share good news with you to improve your relationships. Want to instantly be happier? Do something kind for them.

4. Express gratitude

It will make you happier.

It will improve your relationships.

It can make you a better person.

It can make life better for everyone around you.

5. Meditate

Meditation can increase happinessmeaning in life, social support and attention span while reducing anger, anxiety, depression and fatigue. Along similar lines, prayer can make you feel better — even if you’re not religious.

6. Get enough sleep

You can’t cheat yourself on sleep and not have it affect you. Being tired actually makes it harder to be happy. Lack of sleep = more likely to get sick. “Sleeping on it” does improve decision making. Lack of sleep can make you more likely to behave unethically. There is such a thing as beauty sleep.

Naps are great too. Naps increase alertness and performance on the job, enhance learning abilityand purge negative emotions while enhancing positive ones. Here’s how to improve your naps.

7. Challenge yourself

Learning another language can keep your mind sharp. Music lessons increase intelligence. Challenging your beliefs strengthens your mind. Increasing willpower just takes a little effort each day and it’s more responsible for your success than IQ. Not getting an education or taking advantage of opportunities are two of the things people look back on their lives and regret the most.

8. Laugh

People who use humor to cope with stress have better immune systems, reduced risk of heart attack and stroke, experience less pain during dental work and live longer. Laughter should be like a daily vitamin. Just reminiscing about funny moments can improve your relationship. Humor has many benefits.

9. Touch someone

Touching can reduce stress, improve team performance, and help you be persuasive. Hugs make you happier. Sex may help prevent heart attacks and cancer, improve your immune system and extend your life.

10. Be optimistic

Optimism can make you healthierhappier and extend your life. The Army teaches it in order to increase mental toughness in soldiers. Being overconfident improves performance.

This article first appeared on Barking Up The Wrong Tree

 

37 Sad Quotes That Will Get You Through the Worst Days

Author Article

BEN ROBERTS PHOTOGRAPHY/GETTY IMAGES

Sadness—never, ever, something that we actively summon or wish to feel—manages to find its way to us every now and then. It’s a natural part of life. But sometimes it helps to know that others are going (or have been) through the same thing. Because that means that things will get better, start looking up. If you’re experiencing tough times or dealing with loss, this list of sad quotes will, oddly enough, provide some comfort and comradery. And if you’re on the verge of just needing a good cry, these emotional quotes will happily help release an onslaught of soul-cleansing tears. Some were penned by your favorite Southern authors; others were said by important historic figures. But all have one thing in common: They just get it. Keep reading for 37 sad quotes that’ll help you get through a bad day, crappy month, or terrible year. (And when you’ve come out on the other side, check out these funny love quotes that we can all relate to—it’ll lighten the mood.)

Sad Quotes about Life

“There are moments when I wish I could roll back the clock and take all the sadness away, but I have the feeling that if I did, the joy would be gone as well.” –Nicholas Sparks

“Life’s under no obligation to give us what we expect.” –Margaret Mitchell

“You see, I usually find myself among strangers because I drift here and there trying to forget the sad things that happened to me.” –F. Scott Fitzgerald

“Don’t go around saying the world owes you a living. The world owes you nothing. It was here first.” –Mark Twain

“Things change. And friends leave. And life doesn’t stop for anybody.” –Stephen Chbosky

“Life is a moderately good play with a badly written third act.” –Truman Capote

“I have learned now that while those who speak about one’s miseries usually hurt, those who keep silence hurt more.” –C.S. Lewis

“The excursion is the same when you go looking for your sorrow as when you go looking for your joy.” Eudora Welty

“Don’t ever tell anybody anything. If you do, you start missing everybody.” –J.D. Salinger

Sad Quotes about Death

“So it’s true, when all is said and done, grief is the price we pay for love.” –E.A. Bucchianeri

“What is hardest to accept about the passage of time is that the people who once mattered the most to us wind up in parentheses.” –John Irving

“Our dead are never dead to us until we have forgotten them.” –George Eliot

“The bitterest tears shed over graves are for words left unsaid and deeds left undone.” –Harriet Beecher Stowe

“It is the unknown we fear when we look upon death and darkness, nothing more.” –J.K. Rowling

“It’s sad when someone you know becomes someone you knew.” –Henry Rollins

“There is a time for departure, even when there’s no certain place to go.” –Tennessee Williams

“You meet everyone twice in this life, when they come and when they go.” –C.C Aurel

“Grief is not as heavy as guilt, but it takes more away from you.” ­–Veronica Roth

“Death is a great revealer of what is in a man, and in its solemn shadow appear the naked lineaments of the soul.” –E.H. Chapin

“Death is the dropping of the flower that the fruit may swell.” –Henry Ward Beecher

Check out 115 Sympathy Messages for Friends and Family.

Sad Love Quotes

“You know, a heart can be broken, but it keeps on beating, just the same.” –Fannie Flagg

“It’s amazing how someone can break your heart, and you can still love them with all the little pieces.” –Ella Harper

“There is a distinct, awful pain that comes with loving someone more than they love you.” –Steve Maraboli

“To have been loved so deeply, even though the person who loved us is gone, will give us some protection forever.” –J.K. Rowling

“If you gave someone your heart and they died, did they take it with them? Did you spend the rest of forever with a hole inside you that couldn’t be filled?” –Jodi Picoult

“You make me feel like a firefly. Trapped in a belljar; starved for love.” –Ayushee Ghoshal

“You’re like a song that I heard when I was a little kid but forgot I knew until I heard it again.” –Maggie Stiefvater

“There is no greater sorrow than to recall, in misery, the time when we were happy.” –Dante Aligheri

Check out 120 Romantic Messages for Your Loved Ones.

Sad Sayings

“Sometimes you got to hurt something to help something. Sometimes you have to plow under one thing in order for something else to grow.” –Ernest J. Gaines

“Tears are words the mouth can’t say nor can the heart bear.” –Joshua Wisenbaker

“Of all the words of mice and men, the saddest are, ‘It might have been.'” –Kurt Vonnegut

“Being a successful person is not necessarily defined by what you have achieved, but by what you have overcome.” –Fannie Flagg

“To have felt too much is to end in feeling nothing.” –Dorothy Thompson

“One thing you can’t hide is when you’re crippled inside.” –John Lennon

“There are years that ask questions and years that answer.” –Zora Neale Hurston

“Heavy hearts, like heavy clouds in the sky, are best relieved by the letting of a little water.” –Christopher Morley

“Tears come from the heart and not from the brain.” –Leonardo da Vinci

4 Simple Habits That Build Remarkable Self-Confidence

Author Article

When serial entrepreneur Ilya Pozin and his co-founder Tom Ryan launched Pluto TV in 2014, the idea went against the grain.

The future of online entertainment looked like it would be mostly on-demand, subscription-based, and ad-free–à la Netflix or Hulu. Meanwhile, Pluto TV would stream over 100 channels of live cable TV for free–no sign-up required–and use ads to make money. (The startup later added on-demand content.)

Five years later, Pozin and Ryan’s bet is paying off. In January, Viacom agreed to acquire Los Angeles-based Pluto TV for $340 million in cash.

The acquisition will give Pluto TV, which has operated mainly in the U.S., access to Viacom’s massive library of content and the opportunity to expand faster internationally, chief growth officer Pozin told Inc. Viacom, composed of networks like Comedy Central, MTV, and Nickelodeon, has more than 700 million subscribers and operates in over 160 countries. Going global while maintaining a lead in the U.S. is not easy, as it requires more resources and unique content, Pozin admits. Pluto TV had raised $50 million in funding to date and has 12 million monthly active users.

“Being a media company, you’re up against the big guys that have billion-dollar budgets for original content and things like that,” says Pozin. “Being part of a massive company like Viacom, which has amazing resources and content and relationships with distribution partners even stronger than us, we just know it’s going to propel the company at a rapid pace.”

Pluto generates revenue through targeted ads that are shorter than typical TV commercials, says Pozin. (Traditional TV has about 10 to 16 minutes of ads per hour; Pluto TV has eight to 10 minutes of ads per hour.) More than 140 content partners use Pluto to monetize their libraries of content, and Pluto’s app is available via distribution partners like Amazon and Roku.

Pozin says he was partly inspired to start the company six years ago as he hand-selected YouTube video after YouTube video for his 2-year-old daughter to watch. He found YouTube’s recommendations weren’t appropriate or very good.

“I always joked like I just learned how to change diapers and now all of a sudden the internet expects me to be an expert in children’s videos, which I wasn’t,” he says. What he wanted was an online TV experience where he could simply set a channel and know it would be kid-friendly.

Pluto isn’t the only company that has tried to corner the streaming TV market. The startup competes with services like Crackle, YouTube TV, and Hulu with live TV. And, of course, traditional cable television.

Last spring, Pozin and Ryan approached Viacom for a content deal, which would have made Viacom one of its many content partners, which include Warner Bros. and NBC. Instead, the media conglomerate proposed to acquire the company.

Pluto signed the deal on January 18–Pozin’s 36th birthday. The company will continue to operate as an independent subsidiary of Viacom, led by CEO Tom Ryan, the company said. All 150 employees, including Pozin, will be staying on.

“I’m stoked for what’s to come,” he says. “The outcome of the exit is huge, but the opportunity to see our company turn into a household name, which is really what’s right in front of us, is even bigger.”

Pozin, an Inc.com columnist, made Inc.‘s 30 Under 30 list back in 2012 with his web design company Ciplex, which was acquired in 2016 for $1.5 million. He also founded development studio Open Me, which was acquired by technology company Rowl in 2015 for $6 million.

While Pozin wouldn’t disclose what his payout will be from the deal, he did reveal what he plans to do with it: “My priority is my family and their future so once that’s been handled, maybe I’ll finally take a vacation.”

6 Tips For Getting In Shape When You’re Depressed

Author Article

Experts often say that exercise helps cure depression— but for many of us, regular exercise is already one of the world’s most difficult challenges. Getting to the gym while depressed? That’s asking a lot.

But the experts aren’t wrong: a regular exercise routine does help with depression. Exercise helps you sleep better, improves your overall health, and gives you confidence. Plus, exercise gives you endorphins, and endorphins are part of what make you happy.


Not sure how to stick to an exercise routine when you’re already feeling down? These tips may help.

Start Small

Diving into a full-scale exercise habit is asking a lot, especially if simply getting out of bed is a struggle. Stay in the sheets? Why not, if the alternative is “running 10 miles.”

Don’t demand so much. Start your exercise routine with tiny steps — literally. Instead of a marathon, try a 20-minute jog. Instead of jumping into an intensive spin class, try yoga.

Of course, tailor this advice to your experience level. If you ran marathons before depression reared its head, a 20-minute jog might be too easy. Maybe start with a 5K. And if you’ve never set foot on a treadmill, consider walking before you run.

The main point: Starting with a simpler routine gets you back in the game, and celebrating these small accomplishments builds excitement and momentum — necessary for getting back in shape.

Stay Realistic

You’re not a Tesla Roadster — you can’t go from zero to 60 in two seconds flat. Or even two months. Starting small means nothing if you’re working toward unrealistic goals. Not to mention unrealistic goals make failure more likely. And let’s be real: Right now, you need a win.

To set your goals, think about where you’d like to be, physically, a few months from now. Pumping iron like Schwarzenegger? Rocking the Chicago Marathon? Free-soloing El Capitan?

Now scale back. Think about where, realistically, you will be. Maybe that’s a 5K, not a marathon. Maybe you’re hitting the climbing gym daily. Remember: You’re not simply improving your body, you’re also working to improve your mind. And that’s hard! Realistic goals make achievable goals.

Pick an Activity you Really, Really Like

Don’t make this harder on yourself by forcing yourself to do an exercise you hate. Despise running? No big deal! Running can suck. Try swimming instead.

Here’s the theory: Motivating yourself to exercise when you’re depressed is hard. Sometimes it feels rocket-science hard. Make it easier by picking something that doesn’t feel like exercise. After all, “exercise” isn’t limited to Olympic track and field events. Consider playing tennis, joining a softball league, or even going to yoga at your favorite breweries.

The most important thing is finding something you’ll be hard-pressed to skip.

Don’t Beat Yourself Up for Mistakes

Let’s be real: You’re going to mess up. Don’t feel ashamed! It’s 100 percent fine to miss a spin class, skip the gym, or run out of breath on mile three. Failure may feel crushing, but the feeling can be overcome — if you’re compassionate with yourself.

Instead of lingering on your screwed-up exercise session, practice empathy for yourself. You’re working hard to overcome your depression, and that’s something worth celebrating. Don’t give up your efforts. Instead, resolve to try again.

Next time, you’ll succeed. And if you don’t? Keep going back to the gym, or putting on your tennis shoes, or meeting your buddies for pick-up basketball. Eventually, exercise will get easier.

Reward Yourself

And we don’t just mean at the end of your journey. Don’t plan one reward — plan many! Perhaps you’re doing a program like Couch to 5k. Give yourself a treat every time you advance a week in the program. Or, if you’re working on your climbing skills, reward yourself for each increase in difficulty level.

What exactly constitutes a “reward” is entirely up to you. Maybe you watch a new episode of your favorite TV episode — or maybe you treat yourself to ice cream. (Counterintuitive? Maybe. But if it gets you moving…why not?) Choose something that’s a true incentive. Otherwise, you may not find yourself working toward the goal.

Build a Support System

You’re not in this alone. Your friends and family are rooting for you, too — so get them involved in your process. Maybe your mom is looking to start running, too. Go running together! Need a climbing buddy? Ask a few of your pals.

Or maybe just ask your friends to check in on your progress once in a while. But make sure they understand the journey you’re on and how it involves more than simply your physical well-being. You want friends that will celebrate the accomplishments you have made, not friends who will put you down for not crushing all your goals in half the time expected.

Follow These Strategies, and You’re 25% More Likely to Keep Exercising

Setting realistic goals, rewarding yourself, practicing kindness, and establishing a support system will all help you on the road to recovery. In fact, studies have found that depressed patients who practice these self-help tenets are 25 percent more likely to stick to their chosen exercise program.

Exercise is essential to overcoming depression, and these practices help integrate exercise into your daily routine so you can feel better faster.

This article first appeared on Talkspace