Bounce Back!

In 1985, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints released a short cassette tape that focused on helping people with feeling positive.

The twenty-minute tape was a creative presentation of the idea that "disappointment is an unavoidable fact of life," but that "it can aslo be full, and rich and wonderful, if you don't let the bad times rob you of hope."

"There are lots of ways to deal with disappointment, overcome problems and bounce back from the hard times. And there are lots of ways to find the hope that you need to carry on. This tape is a collection of thoughts, ideas and music that can help you bounce back."

I've enjoyed this tape for years, and thought it would be a good idea to share the transcript (taken from the inner flap) of the message with anyone else who might find it helpful.

How to Bounce Back - Ten Ideas

Idea No. 1 - Be Your Own Best Friend

It's hard to bounce back if you're always down on yourself. A low self-image and the way you act because of it, sets you up for failure and disappointment. It creates a downward cycle that leads to sadness and depression and feeling of not wanting to try again.

When you're honest with yourself and present yourself honestly to others, you start to feel good about yourself. You realize you are a good person, an important person. You've broken the downward cycle, and you've started to bounce back.

Idea No. 2 - Be Realistic

There's nothing wrong with making big plans for the future--even if they sometimes get into the realm of pure fantasy.

What's important is that you are able to keep your expectations realistic. For instance, a great job is not going to come looking for you. That's going to take some effort on your part.

But once you make up your mind about what you want and go after it, look out, World!

Idea No. 3 - Pick Yourself Up

Most of the time you'll have to take the initiative to get yourself out of the dumps. Don't wait for a friend to call to cheer you up. You make the call.

Sign up for an art class, take a tour of the city, try out for a play, invite friends to dinner. The important thing is not what you do, but that you do something.

It's funny how when you look for the positive, you find it.

Idea No. 4 - Give of Yourself

When you get involved with others and their problems, suddenly yours don't seem so overwhelming. Now that's bouncing back in the best of ways, because you're not the only one who benefits. And it can be as simple as being the listening ear for another's frustrations.

Giving of yourself is the best gift of all because it comes back in so many ways.

Idea No. 5 - Give Yourself a Break

More often than not, people are more concerned with what's wrong with themselves than they are with what's wrong with you. They don't spend all their time looking at you trying to discover your weaknesses.

The only real observer of your problems is you. And you know something? You're not half bad.

Idea No. 6 - Get a Move On

Don't put your life on hold waiting for your hopes and dreams to come true. Just because life has "cheated" you out of something doesn't mean you have an excuse for not living up to your potential.

There are so many exciting possibilities, so many wonderful things to do and learn.

Each life is precious. It's far too valuable to waste, just sitting around. The more you do nothing, the more powerless you feel, and the more you feel that life is living you instead of the other way around.

Idea No. 7 - Talk to Your Family

Talking about your problems is a good way to bounce back--especially when you can share them with someone in your own family. They love you. They care about what happens to you. They want to help.

But sometimes it's hard to start these discussions because you're afraid they won't understand or they'll be disappointed in you.

Yet, even though it might seem awkward at first, it's worth the effort. Your family can be a great source of comfort and reassurance when things get hard.

Idea No. 8 - Accentuate the Positive

fThe way you look at a situation has a lot to do with how you respond to it. It's the old question of whether the glass is half full or half empty. A little creative thinking and a concious effort to see things in a positive way can turn things around. The ordinary becomes the extraordinary. A stumbling block becomes a stepping stone.

Idea No. 9 - Learn from the Hard Times

Be glad for the challenges that come into your life. They're difficult to appreciate when you're trying to deal with them. But those are the very times when you grow.

Life is a series of good things and not so good things, and you need the bad to appreciate the good. Hard times build character. Negative events become positive lessons that better equip you to cope with future trials.

And it's during the hard times that you really get to know yourself. You are forced to look closer at yourself to find the hidden reserves of strength it takes to overcome adversity.

No person or thing can make you happy. You have to find happiness and joy within yourself.

Idea No. 10 - Realize You're Not Alone

The human spirit is remarkably resilient. We fall down--or get knocked down--yet somehow we manage to bounce back. But it can be hard.

When disappointments crowd in on you, somtimes you feel so alone, and so unable to go on. But when you look within yourself, way down deep inside, you come to the realization that you're really not alone.

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See Also

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints recently created a new website called Provident Living. Among other things, there's section on Social and Emotional Strength.

Some of the issues covered are topics such as self-esteem and self-worth, anxiety, depression, stress management, suicide, and many more.

For other Church products, visit the Online Distribution Center. Bounce Back is currently out of print.

Transcript copyright © 1985 Bonneville Media Communications

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