Life is often stressful. Events can throw you into a depression and make you feel like a prisoner. It doesn’t help if you’re surrounded by negativity and people who try to leech all of the joy out of you. So, how do you survive and maintain a better attitude?

First, don’t allow others to dictate what you feel. When someone is feeling mad, frustrated, disappointed, or sad, they will often blame others or try to get you to feel as badly as they do. You can’t shoulder their pain. Even when they’re blaming you for their problems, it’s rarely the truth. Don’t let them unjustly convince you otherwise. Empathy for another person is a great thing, but allowing them to make you feel bad will not help them or you. Get some distance from the person, even if it’s just going into another room. Release all of the negative emotions as best as you can. Make a choice not to look at life with a defeatist attitude just because someone else does and thinks that you should too.

Repeat positive affirmations to help you to stay strong. Saying positive things about yourself to yourself will toughen your resolve over time. Repeat statements such as, “I can handle anything. I am strong. I am smarter than anyone thinks. I will make a good life for myself, despite what others say.” Carve out a future of your own and a change of attitude. Don’t do this with feelings of revenge or anger. Employ positive steps with a positive attitude so that you can be happy.

Deep breathing and exercise will also help, especially if you can do it outside in the fresh air. Nature has restorative powers and the ability to cleanse any negativity that you’re feeling. Getting away from all of the electronics, news, social media craziness, as well as anyone in your life who’s stressing you out will give your body and spirit time to heal. Even if you can only take a small amount of time for yourself, it’s imperative to do so on a regular basis.

Lastly, immerse yourself in something that brings you joy. Whether that joy involves reading, photography, journaling, going to the park, interacting with animals, or something else, it’s essential to have an activity in your life that makes you feel at peace while you’re doing it.

In many instances, you won’t have control over what happens in your life. However, you always have control over how you react to what happens. Don’t let anyone drag you down. On the inside, you need to remember that you’re a unique individual and are worthy of good things. Approach and respond to situations with a better attitude and trust that everything will turn out in your life. Believe in yourself, and good things will happen.