If a friend is struggling and ready to throw in the towel, how can you encourage them? Hope is so powerful; yet so many of us give up and lose hope so easily. What can you do to keep hope alive?
Just spare some time with them and be positive yourself, Ms Someway is right.
Seek the truth. The truth always brings hope.
Yes, the truth brings hope! KEEP YOUR NOSE IN THE BOOK OF HOPE - GOD'S HOLY WORD! It is from there that flows the river of hope - RIVERS OF LIVING WATER that bring refreshment to our souls and hope that all things will be made new. How wonderful a hope we have in God's word!
yes I believe it is a listening ear and time with them ... even if they don't want too keep reaching out that hand in support ... no opinions, no shoulds, no buts, just be there for them and be there to listen. Probally won't hurt to remind them though to be strong, hang in there, people do care about them, they are love and loved and as Robert Frost shared after many many hardships, "In three words I can sum up everything I've learned about life: it goes on."
Lastly a good hug is great too ... smiles
planted hope in the right place will ensure a very lasting hope...
hope is like seeds of flower, when planted in the wrong soil, it will not grow; in normal soil, it will grow normal; in suitable excellent soil, it will fluorish....
the reasons the hope not fluorish is giving you feedback that not worth to plant hope at there...and do not try to get different result from same action...
KEEP YOUR NOSE IN THE BOOK OF HOPE - GOD'S HOLY WORD! It is from there that flows the river of hope - RIVERS OF LIVING WATER that bring refreshment to our souls and hope that all things will be made new. How wonderful a hope we have in God's word!
Hope is always there. The person just has to be willing to take it.
Please determine what "throw in the towel" means. Suicide threats should NEVER be taken lightly. If they have a plan and the means they must get help now.
I agree wholeheartedly. If your friend is depressed, professional help must be sought right away. There's no shame in seeking counseling or going on meds. The description that was given of her emotional state is unsettling.
Kudos to Theresa_Kennedy - a good friend to get involved in helping.
I can yank myself out of the doldrums by saying, "I can always find a way." I will say this as often as needed.
you for the little things in life that most take for granite and focus on the happy times not the bad.
Attitude is everything. Keeping up a positive attitude with motivation can mean the world of a difference.
Show them the beauty of the world, the sweet scent of flowers, the laughter of a child - if you bring joy into their lives, then there is always reason to go on.
I agree! There is beauty all around us.
The laughter of a child goes deep inside and is better than any anti-depressant I know of.
You are so right, hope is powerful. Even a little hope can carry us a long way.
In my own opinion from life's wxperiences, hopelessness is the worst feeling ever. It makes the darkness in our lives seem so final. That's why so many commit suicide because they see no way out of the darkness.
It's really hard to say how one would handle a person who is on the verge of giving up without knowing what they were facing, but I would probably try to get them to see how far they'd already come in life and struggles they've made it through and try to help them see that just as they made it through those times they can make it through current struggles. I would probably also want them to know that the people who care for them lives would be negatively effected if they threw in the towel.
If they could begin to believe that, hope could rise up in them a little at a time.
I strongly believe in God, This thing will bring strong hope in any kind.
By being mindful of The Truth ... God ...
God ... Is, Hope ... Eternal ... The Eternal never dies ...
...be a friend...be a constant in their life...be whatever you can for them...just listen....quietly keep sending the same soothing message/planting the seed...it could sprout when the clouds start to clear/feeling the warmth/waking up.
when you say 'hope' - certain scenarious around cancer come to mind for me.....
I think it depends on the situation(s) and the person. Feeling hopeless can be a sign of having depression, so mentioning that to the friend is probably worth doing.
Sometimes, though, it's having hope that makes a situation worse; because when no improvement can be made to happen, the frustration and roller coaster ride is worse than having no hope. In SOME situations it may actually be better to stop having hope, adjust to what's going on, and find ways to cope (at least while no improvement seems imminent or possible to achieve) with a rotten situation. There's nothing more depressing than having hope for too long without seeing/being able to achieve results. The frustration, itself, can cause depression (among other negative things). There's also nothing worse than being a person who knows there's no hope and have people refuse to acknowledge what may well be an accurate perception on the hopeless person's part. That's isolating.
So, I think all you can do is ask your friend if there's a chance there's some depression that could possibly be helped with treatment; and then just be supportive and understanding. She may find her own hope, make peace with a reality that there truly isn't any, or maybe even see an improvement in her situation.
I'm sorry Lisa, I'm going have to disagree with you, although I can well understand where you're coming from..since I'm familiar with your particular situation.
I know this is going to sound like some feel-good diatribe you've read a dozen times before, but I find it's true in my own life.
The reason we give up hope is because we're dwelling on the negative, or on the past, or current situation.
Breaking out of that mindset is essential. It requires dropping the negativity, the past, and unneccessary worrying. You'll never get anywhere if you're stuck on the same-old, same-old. You really do need to change that mindset to one where you're imagining the future..see it the way you want it to be. Do something you've always wanted, but never done before. Think outside the box, and figure out a plan to get you there..do some research, study. Yes, it'll take some time and effort. Still...nothing's impossible.
Then..and this is the most important part...TAKE ACTION. Nevermind what anybody thinks..it's YOUR life. Make it what YOU want. Go for it.
The only thing that separates you from truly successful people is they had a vision, a passion and a plan, and they took ACTION. Well..so can you.
When you think about it, there's nothing stopping you.
I will have to agree with Timorous , you need to cut out dwelling on the negatives and think of the positives, move on, stop counting the broken eggs and sobbing over them do what you can do with what you have ..
@Theresa you may just have to help your friend see the positive working side of things... I do it everyday .. most of the people who come to me, come in that state.. you need to be empathetic but get your friend to move on..
My best wishes to you and your friend
You have not said what your friend is struggling with ( or against ) and in what they are losing hope.........
Drawing from my own experiences.........sometimes it really is time, to throw in the towel and find hope in something fresh and new.
Sometimes, we really do, lose the inning, and need to change strategy to stay in the game.
I just spotted this thread after not seeing it around for quite awhile. I think what many people don't realize is that "hope" isn't always just about whether or not the issue is something like job or financial success. Sometimes, as you say, people struggle with things that truly have nothing to do with attitude or any of the other things people tend to think are the problem when someone talks about hope in general.
One example I was thinking of was my mother when she was bedridden before passing away. She had become resigned to the idea that she wasn't likely to get better. I, on the other hand, kept wishing she'd stop talking as if she was so resigned. Also, I kept having hope that she might get better. So (even though I didn't say anything to her about what I saw as "inappropriate giving up"), inside I kept my hope that she may get better. That laid the foundation on which so many choices and interactions were built. It would have been better for her had I not been so stuck on the idea of always keeping hope myself, and kind of wishing she'd keep it herself as well. She could have used someone who was more in touch with the reality that she, herself, knew was, in fact, reality. My hope was essentially the naive hope of a grown up "little girl" who just needed to believe there was the chance her mother would get better.
So, although I was kind and tried to be supportive in so many ways; the fact is I could have been more supportive and made her feel as if I was more "ready" to deal with her illness if I hadn't remained that naive little girl who (if only in that situation) somehow couldn't shake the naive idea that hope is the most important thing for people to always have.
My mother eventually lost her two feet, and even then I kept hoping there would be a way for her to come home, live "OK enough" (if we found the right mobility aids etc.), and "we'd all live mostly happily ever after, once the matter of her pain had been taken care of.
Infection set in. It was clear she was going to die. I still kept up hope. She came home to die, but she was actually doing reasonably well vital-signs wise and eating-wise - so I actually kind of had a hope in the back of my mind that she just wouldn't die (even with gangrene, which by that time was on both of the surgery sites). Between having hope and seeing that she was dying as soon as expected to die, I just kind of kept having that hope. In fact, it was almost getting to be something I was starting to feel a little more confident in believing.
Well, of course, I found that she had "gone" a couple of weeks after she came home to die; and I realized if I'd been able to accept what she had been able to accept all along, I could have been better support to her; but I also might have done a few things that people might like to do before someone, like a mother, dies.
On another kind of matter, I know someone who works at a company that has announced it will close its doors. His co-worker keeps acting as if he believes the company isn't going out of business, and he may still be working at his long-term job indefinitely. This guy (the co-worker) is big for reading about self-improvement and positive attitude and all that kind of stuff. My friend would also like the company to stay open, but it's already been announced that the company is closing. This guy (the co-worker) can hang onto his hope that some miracle will happen with the business (business decisions usually don't involve being turned out with miracles), and not prepare for what he'll do once the doors are closed; or else he could accept what he's been told by the people involved in the decision-making and responsibility for the money/prophet end of things, and start planning now. He'll be like I was when my mother went - shocked in spite of having some very, very, solid reason to know that - no - there was absolutely no real reason to have hope.
onegoodwoman, you put it perfectly. "Sometimes, we really do lose the inning..". A good part of the time, too, we can see the score that gives us a pretty good idea that we're going to lose it. Also, though, losing an inning isn't always about how we play or what we do or even whether we have good luck. Sometimes someone else cheats. Sometimes the umpires of the world make bad calls. Sometimes, there may even be someone (or a few "someones") who bash us in the knees with the bat, and then take the ball and run off the field with hit.
Oh - I'm one of the biggest ones in the world for positive attitude and hope. Just yesterday morning my daughter called to tell me her cat (already diagnosed as not expected to live through the night) had become so obviously close to death she needed to bring her to the vet to end her pain. The drive is about a half-hour drive, and you know, I was still imagining how she'd get the cat there, the cat would kind of get back a little, and someone would decide she could tolerate treatment after all. About an hour later my daughter called to tell me she was leaving the vets, and the cat was gone.
It's not always a matter of illness or death, though. There are times when circumstances actually do result in a person's very much having his "hands tied". Maybe it happens more when someone has family responsibilities or children. Maybe it happens more if a person finds himself in a game that's being played by mostly cheaters, rather than by people who play fairly. It does happen. People do find themselves with "their hands tied" (at least for awhile, and sometimes for longer than it would take if their hands weren't tied (by any number of different sets of circumstances). I still say if a person knows he's lost that inning, or if he's sitting in the middle of the field with his hands and feet tied; it isn't supportive or helpful to have others suggest he develop a better attitude in order to get himself out of his pickle. If he's clever or strong or otherwise skilled at Houdini-like maneuvers there's a chance he'll figure out how to get out of that pickle he's in. It won't, however, be a matter of simply improving his thinking. Yes, the right attitude will keep him trying to get free, but if whoever/whatever has tied his hands has done a good enough job that he can't get free, all the trying in the world isn't going to cut it.
The most disturbing thing about how so many people don't seem to understand how some of those innings can be lost, or how some people's hands can actually be tied; is that unless/until they understand better, they'll keep on implying that the person "in a pickle" is in it as a result of his own inferior attitude. That's not only misguided. It's cruel in a way. People don't like to believe that there can actually be times when a person's hands are tied through no fault of his own. It's less frightening to believe that all pickles are the result of inferior attitude and can therefore be fixed with a simple attitude adjustment. Oh - were the biggest and most difficult struggles in life as easy to deal with as so many people need to believe they are.
Yes - a good thing to do is to sometimes to change strategy in order to stay in the game. Sometimes, too, though, all that person on the field, with his hands and feet tied, can do is duck his head as best he can and hope nothing else happens before the weather rots the ropes enough that he can get himself free.
Not a very hopeful post, I know (and - believe me - I'm a master of hope, persistence, and even accomplishment against all odds). I think people need to know, though, that it can sometimes be OK and positive NOT to have hope when there is no reason to have any.
Hope doesn't end in death...
My 2-year old nephew and I were watching news last night when the news was turned to a woman who was lying half dead in the ICU. Then, without taking his eyes off the television he said, "she will be brought to life again in paradise."
It was the least I expected to hear from him. With what he said, the child just loaded my faith with another bulk of hope, not just for better days in this world today, but for permanent better says in the future.
I like to keep Hope alive with lots of love and attention.
And, if that doesn't work, threats and intimidation.
My hope stays alive because I have been blessed with a lot of faith. My believe in knowing God loves me gives me strength when things get tough.
Read, read and read some more. I find reading other peoples inspirational stories helps. Everyone has a story to tell. I keep hope alive by always changing my negative thought to the opposite. It takes a lot to train your brain to do this, but with perserverence it becomes a habit.
I also don't take myself or life too seriously and I laugh a lot. I see so much beauty in nature and focus on what I am grateful for. Everyone goes through times when they feel terrible despair, however having experienced some trauma in my time, I know that you can come out the other side smiling again.
Real hope comes from seeing and understanding the options before us and being motivated to do the right things to advance our own cause in life ... I find religious faith can only provide fals hope because no gods ever existed in the real world since nature has no use for such super-natural, man made ideas ... and the sooner human-kind removes these silly, out-dated ideas from the global mind space, the sooner humans will have a much better chance of evolving out of our emotional subjectivity into a more cosmic reality which will end our flat-earth outlook on our future and give hope a much broader perspective on things yet to come our way!
When someone is down and on the verge of giving up, most attempts to liften their spirits will just bounce right off. IT's almost like they've got goggles on which prevent them from seeing a balanced perspective - they just see doom and gloom.
2 possible approaches are both powerful and which you might use depends on your relationship with your friend.
The first is is not for the faint of heart, but can be very very powerful. You simply break the pattern of their thoughts and behaviour and then whilethey are confused poit their consciousness in a new direction with a question.
The second is much more sutbtle but can be even more powerful. To do this you need to make sure you look after yorself first - you're going to meet your friend where they are - in the doom and gloom and you needto make sure you can gt yorself out at will.
Assuming you can - the approach goes like this. You actually meet your friend wherethey are by allowing yourselfto feel little of wherethey are and experiencing the word as they see it. Then once you've built rapport with them you begin to gently change their perspective - for example you might tell them a story (Milton Erikson was a master of this - look him up on wilkipedia) and accepting their current reality building bridges to new possibilites. - They key is accepting wherethey are AND only then working to help them see the other possibilites - softly softly catchee monkey.
Good luck I hope they feel better soon.
A very good friend of mine told me that she wept yesterday in the chiropractor's office, because the chiro did not seem very encouraging about her physical condition.
Honestly, my friend has a lot to be emotional about, as she was laid off from her job late in the summer, and she is not a young person. During her employment, her company did not make things any easier, and working conditions were far from ideal. I feel sure that conditions there contributed to ill health for a number of their employees.
But she has a good mind and a resilient spirit, and she has God.
I look at the body as also being extremely resilient, even though she may not. But that's just where my own experiences and prejudices inform my outlook.
Even though I know a couple of things that could help her, I can't be too pushy about it, and that's where the frustration lies. You can lead a horse to water, but you can't make him drink.
Keep hope alive by reminding your friend of all that is good in their life and we all have "something good" to dwell upon... the love of a child, a pet, good friends, sweet memories. Talk about the good times you know about in their lives. Take time to just talk of something good for some relief from whatever the burden is.
Remind your friend we all have ebbs and flows of good times and bad. It is the way of life!
Know your friend. Is this hopelessness typical or very unusual for them? If it is unusual, offer to go with them to the doctor to get some medical advice since as mentioned earlier in the comments, severe depression needs intervention. Your friend will thank you.
I know, because a friend seemed changed and not herself and between her husband and I, we managed to convince her to see her physician who diagnosed depression and she is glad she took our advice!
I see it this way. Always be positive and trust in God. Autosuggest your mind that He will never leave you. Then think of the less fortunate ones, and be grateful how lucky you are and how tolerable your problems are. These thoughts will give one strength and hope to go forward.
By never giving up. But then of course, I learned this in the Marines during Vietnam. Hope exists only to those who face life and it's realities good or bad and take control of destiny by choosing to mature to a level of dealing with it, also, good or bad. The ones that fail are always those who decide to act as children and choose to think it is the responsibility of someone else or "God" to deal with that which they reject to deal with and hope can only come by using the "gift" the creator instilled in each one of us. That "gift," is our "brain."
There are times when keeping hope alive is not easy. The best way is to remember an event that occurred in your life that seemed impossible, but somehow it happened in an unexpected way. Just something small and simple can turn your thinking around.
Whenever I start to feel hopeless I will look for stories in the news for inspiration. Along with all of the bad news that is highlighted daily, there are always stories of people overcoming huge obstacles and others doing amazing things to help someone in need. It makes me realize - there is always hope!
Theresa, not sure I understand your question--what happened to the 'friend' in the scenario? Are you asking how we help a friend who is hopeless? or how we maintain our own hope?
I know I'm going to get flack for this but, hanging on to hope is hopeless. I would rather investigate WHY I feel hopeless and experience what arises from that inquiry-can often lead one to the 'dark night of the soul', rather than blindly bolster myself up with superficial self talk that, in my heart of hearts, I am not really believing.
Integrity and truthseeking--that's where true hope lies. As for the hopeless friend, well, maybe the kinder thing is to support them in exactly where they are instead of bolstering them up...in other words, step out of the way and allow them to go through what they need to go through w/o interference. Perhaps it is their 'dark night of the soul' and what we offer is far less superior to what they will achieve when they go through this crisis. It happens...
Obviously depends on the situation. In every cases tell to your friend that you are there and that you trust in him .If he feel your confidence, he maybe can feel rising within himself a bit of strength.... only a bit, but enough to take the first steps toward healing.
For me... had work!
wow, the advice I'm reading here is good -- alleviating my not-so-good feelings at the moment. I'm at a point of discouragement, but not despair, just a bit of despair.
By being positive, and being grateful for the little things and all the important things that one has in their life like family and friends. If one has great support and can foster and maintain a great attitude then hope will never be extinguished.
The following link should be useful:
God grant me the serenity
to accept the things I cannot change;
courage to change the things I can;
and wisdom to know the difference.
Living one day at a time;
Enjoying one moment at a time;
Accepting hardships as the pathway to peace;
Taking, as He did, this sinful world
as it is, not as I would have it;
Trusting that He will make all things right
if I surrender to His Will;
That I may be reasonably happy in this life
and supremely happy with Him
Forever in the next.
I read Lisa HW's reply - it's true. But for me, there is always hope: when one door closes another will open. So even when a close friend of my died recently of cancer, I knew he would die, and we talked about his soon to come passing, and yet there was hope: that he would come back, that he would tease us from the other side... ANd with jobs the same: if one job ends, another one might be around the corner.
maybe I'm pathetic for having hope always, but it does serve me.
The one time I almost lost hope was when my relationship went up the creek and I went into a year long depression. When I climbed out of the dungeon, I realised that I could never have learned what I learned and never hadve experienced the deep sense of unity and connection with all and everything if I wouldn't had lost all hope at one point. And now I'm back hoping: I have changed, and maybe he will notice and come back. Or maybe another even better man will enter my life, who knows.
Ask Jesse Jackson. He always end his speeches with that very statement "KEEP HOPE ALIVE" (smile). Hope comes from having faith in "GOD". So many people today don't believe in "GOD". That's the main reason the world is in such a mess. It's time to tell the world to "PRAY". Pass It ON. The Commissioner
Having recently been diagnosed with breast cancer and reading these posts, I just have to comment on what I feel I will need when I lose hope - which I hope I never do lose. I will need the people around me to help me keep my sense of humour. I will need them to be strong when I am feeling weak and wobbly. I will need to know that I am not alone with my cancer - it is not just mine, it belongs to me and those close to me. I will need to be listened to when I need to be listened to. What I will not need is sympathy, tears and doom and gloom. I will not need my cancer sensationalising. I will not need to be gossiped about as if I am going to die and how tragic. I will just need to know that those around me are as hopeful as I am today. And if I lose hope, I will need to know that they are still as hopeful as I am today.
Having always been a glass half full person - I don't envisage losing hope. But I am also a realistic thinker and there may be a time when my optimism is tested. If that happens, I will have to adjust, weigh everything up and look to those around me to help my find hope again.
There are a lot of us breast cancer survivors here on HubPages who know exactly what you are going through. Hold onto that hope, you will get through it.
You are a v strong, positive woman. Stay blessed n beautiful
I heard once, that a human can live 3 weeks without food, 3 days without water, 3 minutes without food, but even 3 seconds without hope is deadly.
TK, there is a book by John Eldridge called "Waking The Dead." He discusses myth in a portion of the book and it has helped me, and helped me help HS kids that I coach.
First of all, myth has been misrepresented in modern times. It has come to mean an untrue story. ie. Mythbusters. What a myth is, is this. A story that contains few if any facts, but tells an ultimate truth, that even the most distracted soul recognizes. (The antithesis of the 6 o'clock news eh?)
Some myths are so good at this that they become classics. Eldridge believes this is because they answer the "3 great lies". The world would have us believe: 1) This is it. What you see is what you get. He who dies with the most toys wins. 2) It's all good. There is no Battle. No Good/Evil. 3) Because of #1 & #2 ....you don't matter.
A great myth says: 1) There's way more going on than meets the eye. Luke Skywalker has NO clue about the battles fought to protect him. He thinks he's a poor orphan farm kid. He doesn't know that this old man, Obi Wan Kenobi, risked everything and lost all of his brothers and sisters in an effort to keep him alive. (insert any story you like)
2) There is a battle! And it rages over nothing less than the decimation of mankind. It is hidden, it is smooth, it is deadly. All of mankind is in dire danger.( There are things worse than death)
3) You are integral to it's outcome. You were designed to fulfill a purpose. Before the first nano-second ticked off the eternal clock, you....were...designed. You don't simply matter, the story can't even be told without your presence!
I guess, for me, understanding that death is such a small part of life is a key. I don't want people to remember how or even that...I died. I do want them to remember how I lived.
1) There's more goin' on than meets the eye.
2)It is a fight.
You just decide if you want to live or you want to die. Hope is a choice. And it keeps many of us alive...
It depends on the degree of the problem. In some cases, professional help may be required.
But if things are not that bad as you assessed, try encouraging him/her to read every morning. That helps.
Hope is hoping so what you hope might never come to pass, learn to live with that
Hope is something you want and which might be out of your reach....but if you wish and try hard enough hope can make that wish come true. Hope is an intangible and ephemeral(short lasting)emotion that is transient but powerful within its short life.
Stay hopeful yourself; be happy and it'll rub off on your friend.
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