Student Welfare Services

How to cope when things feel out of your control

Once again, we are dealing with circumstances that are seemingly out of our control. We have gone into another five day lockdown and have shifted back to an online working space. Although we have dealt with similar scenarios before, it is totally normal  to feel a little helpless in times of uncertainty.

You might feel like screaming, you might feel like the world is out to get you, or that things will never change… again, this is totally normal .

There are some things that can help when things feel like they are out of control.

The first thing we need to do is to accept that this is out of our control. By accepting, we shift the narrative from being a victim of a situation and focusing on the negative, to something we can control… how it affects you .

You can try to  determine your reaction to what is happening , and decide how to deal with it. Here are some things that can help us react more positively?

  1. Imagine what someone you respect would do/ imagine what your best self would do.

It is easy to get caught up in being upset and judge ourselves into a sadness frenzy. But a more helpful response would be to try and give yourself the advice you would give to a friend.

  • What would you tell them to help them out?
  • Would you judge them or accept their feelings?

Or maybe try putting yourself in the shoes of someone you look up to – how would they respond?

  1. Write down your thoughts.

Negatives thoughts easily find their way into our minds, and once you start thinking these thoughts it becomes even easier to believe them. This is known as a negative feedback loop. It is important to recognise that you are not your thoughts, thoughts are not  facts, and just because you keep telling yourself something negative does not make it true.

A way to break this negative feedback loop is to write down these thoughts. Then read them back as if someone else had written them. This will help you to accept your thoughts for what they are… just thoughts.

  1. Talk to others about what you are going through.

It is normal to be feeling grief, sadness, anxiety and frustration .it  is very likely that people around you are feeling similar ways.

Talking to friends, family, or anyone else you feel comfortable talking to is a great way to feel less alone, and sometimes verbalizing what you are feeling helps take control away from those feelings. It might be helpful to understand that other people are going through similar feelings of uncertainty and that may help in validating what you are experiencing.

It might be that you try some of these strategies but still feel concerned or need additional support . The staff are very willing to talk with you and can offer support . Please feel free to contact your mentor , year level co-ordinator or head of school . Support and counseling is also  available by contacting  Catie McNamara at Student Welfare Services .


Andrew Dellafiore and Jess Soccio

Student Welfare Services



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