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Living Through the Unexpected: What To Do When You Find Yourself in Unfamiliar Territory

No matter how hard you try, you just can’t plan for everything that will come your way throughout life. Luckily, there are healthy and positive ways to deal with even the most difficult situations you may find yourself in. It is those very situations — things like an unplanned pregnancy finding yourself facing homelessness or the loss of a job — that can push you beyond what you imagined yourself capable of. Instead of being overcome with panic or grief, follow these tips to turn the situation around into one that is positive and encourages growth.  

Evaluate Your Situation

A sudden change or unexpected news can leave you overwhelmed. In that situation, the potential results that demand the most attention are not always the most likely ones. Rather, negativity bias often means that they are the ones that will negatively impact if they come to fruition. Instead of letting your imagination run rampant with  “what ifs,” take the time to evaluate your situation. You might be surprised to find that it isn’t as horrible as you originally thought. If it still looks dire, at least you’ll know exactly where you stand. From there, you can start to plan action to make the situation better. 

Establish a Solid Support System

Social support is critical to ensuring success in a crisis situation. It helps bolster mental health and can help keep you focused on achieving the desired — or best possible — outcome. So, if you find yourself in an unexpected situation and can’t find a way out, it only makes sense to seek out a strong support system. If you are unsure where to turn, reach out to a helpline for support. They can also direct you to local resources like support groups or counselors. 

Research Options to Turn It Around

No matter how hopeless a situation may seem, there are options to help turn it around. The more viable paths you have to take, and the better educated you are about how to implement them, the more likely you are to find a positive outcome. For example, if you are facing an unplanned pregnancy, you might look into what options are available. They may include abortion, keeping the baby or the steps necessary for placing a child for adoption. If you have lost a job, then you might consider returning to school, a career training program or finding a new job right away. Once you have chosen the path you will take, work to uncover resources to make it a reality. 

Whether you have just lost a job, find yourself facing a serious illness or facing an unplanned pregnancy, you have options. Take time to evaluate your situation, uncover options and seek support to get through the situation.