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Written By: DiveThru Team

Reviewed By: Natalie Asayag MSW, LCSW


Feeling Miserable: A Guide to Your Emotions

PUBLISHED Apr 20th, 2021 & UPDATED ON Nov 30th, 2022

We all know that feeling miserable is a state of being…well, not super happy. On the outside looking in, your life might seem really great. But inside, there’s a whole other situation happening. It feels like you keep chasing happiness, but you just can’t seem to find the positives in your life right now. Despite some of the good things you have going for you, maybe you don’t feel the joy you’re supposed to be feeling. Instead, you wallow in misery and let the feeling completely take over. It’s the kinda feeling that makes you wanna lock the door, close the curtains and pull your blanket over your head to shut out the rest of the world. Basically, you start to shut down emotionally instead of looking for a way out. It’s self-sabotage and the longer it goes on, the harder it becomes to pull yourself out of this funk. But we promise, it’s not impossible to overcome this miserable feeling!

Everyone feels unhappy or miserable at times. We’re human, after all! And no matter how much we want it to be, life isn’t perfect. We still run into problems, challenges and periods of stress. But you’re not alone. Let’s dive thru feeling miserable and how you can cope with this negative emotion.

A Deeper Look at Feeling Miserable

What does it really mean to be miserable, anyway? Dictionary.com defines miserable as: “adj. wretchedly unhappy, uneasy, or uncomfortable.” Well, that sounds…not so pleasant. “Wretchedly unhappy” does have a fancy Victorian ring to it, so we might have to keep that term for future use.

Anyways. What causes us to feel so miserable? Well, when we’re unhappy with one or more aspects of our life. Maybe you compare yourself to other people constantly to the point where you’ve become unhappy with your life because it doesn’t look like someone else’s. Or you might set unrealistic expectations for yourself, so you constantly feel disappointed when you don’t measure up. You might be a bit of a people pleaser who worries constantly about failing the people who count on you. Defining your self-worth by your accomplishments, meeting milestones and always striving for “the next best thing” can also make you miserable. You become so caught up in a cycle of negative self talk and not feeling good enough, that you lose sight of all the positives. Maybe you’re also neglecting self care or making time for the things that bring you joy!

It’s not just you. We all get stuck in a pit of misery sometimes. It could be a lack of satisfaction from our careers, school, family, social lives, romantic relationships, you name it. But no matter what the reason, we’re here to help you get through this!

How Feeling Miserable Shows Up Mentally

If you’re constantly feeling miserable, it could be a sign of depression. The symptoms are very similar, so pay close attention to your thoughts and how you’re feeling! If you have difficulty pulling yourself out of this miserable rut, it would be beneficial to reach out to a mental health professional. Here are some of the mental signs of misery and depression you might be experiencing:

  • Difficulty focusing and completing tasks
  • Feeling empty, sad and hopeless
  • Becoming irritable and angry more easily
  • Anxiety and restlessness
  • Loss of interest in things you usually enjoy
  • Thoughts of self-harm

Again, these are normal feelings to go through sometimes. We all feel miserable at times, or have bad days. That’s part of being human! But you don’t have to go through this alone. If you feel like you’re constantly feeling miserable and your outlook isn’t becoming positive, reach out for help! There’s no shame in admitting you could use it.

How Feeling Miserable Shows Up Physically

Feeling miserable obviously impacts your mental health, but it can also affect your body in different ways. Here are a few physical symptoms you might notice when you’re feeling miserable and depressed:

  • Fatigue
  • Difficulty sleeping
  • Headaches
  • Body aches
  • Digestive problems
  • High blood pressure
  • Changes in appetite or weight
  • Weakened immune system

Feeling miserable and depressed can be rough on your body, obviously. It can also make you more susceptible to health issues in the future, and we don’t want that. Definitely consult a doctor if many of these symptoms hinder your ability to function on a daily basis. You deserve health and happiness, so don’t be afraid to get the help you need and deserve!

5 Ways to Cope with Feeling Miserable

Okay, so you’re feeling miserable. Now what are you gonna do about it?! Don’t worry, we won’t make you fend for yourself. We’re here to help! Try out some of these coping strategies for yourself to turn that frown upside down.

1. Practice Gratitude

When we feel miserable, it’s hard to see all of the positive things in our lives. But showing gratitude is how we give appreciation for the good, no matter how small! That might include writing a list of things that bring you joy, volunteering in your community, or showing acts of kindness to the people who make your life better. It feels great for everyone involved!

2. Journal

This method right here? We love it. Swear by it. And 10/10 recommend it! Writing down your thoughts and feelings can give you a ton of clarity. Plus, it’s helpful for reframing negative thoughts into positive ones. It also feels very therapeutic and will help release all of those bad feelings you’ve been harbouring! So what are you waiting for? Grab a pen and get to writing!

3. Comfort Yourself Like a Friend

You have probably heard the saying “misery loves company” before. Well, sometimes we don’t always have someone available for us to vent about our feelings exactly when we need them the most. If you don’t have someone around who can be there for you right now, be there for yourself as best as you can. Pat yourself on the back, order some of your go-to comfort food and remind yourself that everything is gonna be okay.

4. Engage in Something Creative

What’s a sure way to pull yourself out of a rut? By getting creative! Do something artsy like drawing, sketching, doing calligraphy or painting. Write poems or try blog writing. Practice an instrument, sing, dance! Whatever creative activity lifts your mood and makes you feel better, do that. The possibilities are endless, plus it’s just really fun to create something from your own imagination!

5. Find a Positive Distraction

There’s so many positive ways to take your mind off things! Pick up that book you’ve been meaning to read. Watch an episode of a show that never fails to make you laugh. Clean out your closet. Listen to a podcast. It’s defs beneficial to focus on something other than the negative thoughts you’ve been having. 


That’s all for now, friend. Remember: this emotion doesn’t define you. We hope these tips help you get through this negative feeling! ‘Cause you deserve all the happiness.


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