What to Do When Something Bad Happens (Especially Don’ts)

Some experiences in our lives happen in a way that we cannot accept the fact that they happened to us. 

We try our best to make them “unbelievable” however, they were real, and they were something that someone would believe. 

You had an accident—it’s real, it’s believable. 

Your loved one is not in this world anymore—it happened, it’s true, it’s believable.

You are in pain, you want relief, and perhaps this is the reason you are reading this post—it’s happening in the present. You are making it happen—it’s believable.

Yet, we cannot. We cannot believe it happened to us. We cannot believe we’re the subject of a sob story.

The first reaction you’ll probably give when something bad happens to you is a face that has seen something unseeable. A face that was not ready for a showdown – jawdropping, eyes wide open, and multiple lines on the forehead.

women in shock

This kind of reaction in the heat of the moment is a natural instinct. It’s how our human DNA has been structured since human evolution. We are supposed to behave like that when something strange happens.

However, what’s hilarious is how we continue to react once the situation has passed a significant time.

Instead of moving forward:

  • We continue to ponder.
  • We continue to stay in shock.
  • We continue to complain about the facts.
  • We continue to regret our actions.
  • We continue like we haven’t moved a day or two since the incident.

This is the story of every person who has ever experienced something bad happen to them.

I was the same when I lost my father. I was the same when my engagement didn’t happen with the person I wanted to. And I was the same when I dealt with a near-death experience.

Although it has nothing to do with the incident in the first place, it’s all about how we react to it.

As Shakespeare said, “There is nothing either good or bad, but thinking makes it so.” 

But still, whether it’s bad or not, it’s our responsibility how we handle it and move forward in life without making the situation even worse. Or without affecting other areas of our lives.

So, if it happened to you – the bad thing – now is the time to buckle up.

Now is the time to learn what to do when something bad happens and really do it. Because knowing is not enough, you must do.

What to do when something bad happens (w/ don’ts)

In my life, I have faced several setbacks and lost hope, but I am still here to make the best of my life.

To live better and let others live better as well. 

And through the following practices, I have stayed in my sanity. I have stayed on my path, likewise, you can do that as well. And what’s prominent is that you focus on the don’ts as well.

Because when you ignite wood, your hands should not have the fuel you used to prepare the stock for the fire.

Often, we forget to focus on the minus under the light of the plus and later wonder why we haven’t got the result. So, try to practice the following tips if something bad has happened to you. Or when it does.

1. Step back:

We live in a fast-paced world. Our every action has a reaction. The technology we surround ourselves with has made it too obvious. So, when something bad happens, we might get into shock; don’t react for a while. However, as soon as we are out of it, we try to do something.

There, you have to press the pause. 

There, you need to step back and realise the situation. You need to carefully overview it from all angles.

Often, after such incidents, when we react, we react in bursts of emotions. 

We don’t see far. We don’t estimate the consequences of our actions from different views. We only see what we want to see. 

And once we do it; there’s no going back. If it doesn’t end up as we thought, we open doors for many other bad things, and the cycle repeats.

So… step back. Give yourself a lot of time to process. A lot of means a lot of.

Only react when you’ve analyzed all the views and your emotions aren’t heavy on you anymore.

2. It’s the best time to be grateful:

One of the bad things about people is that they don’t appreciate what they have. If they have a meal, they crave a burger, and when they get a burger, they long for pizza.

The same repeats when something bad happens to them. They don’t appreciate what’s left; instead, they cry for something that’s lost.

If one meets a fatal accident and loses their leg, they cry for it. But forget to be grateful for the life that has been saved. 

The thing with being grateful is that it keeps you positive. Whereas, comparing breeds negativity and makes it harder to bear what’s already heavy.

Therefore, reflect on what you have and what’s left, and be grateful for it.

Think about what you can even do with what’s left because many have done it. 

As Amberley Snyder said after losing her ability to walk:

“Attitude is a little thing that makes a big difference. I realize, maybe I won’t have control over every situation in my life. Maybe I don’t get to make every decision. But when I wake up in the morning, I get to decide my attitude. And if that’s the only decision I get to make that day – I better make it a good one. Because with the right attitude, who knows what you can achieve?”

She might have lost hope, but as soon as she realised how grateful she was, she did the unimaginable of riding and winning.

3. Don’t stop trusting yourself: 

You lost your money in the stocks, and it’s bad. 

You tripped, and something precious broke; it’s bad. 

You missed the deadline, and now the deal is off; it’s bad. 

But does it mean you have to blame yourself? 

Does it mean you have to hate? 

No, it doesn’t because things like that can happen to anyone. There are high chances of losing money in the stocks, failing to get the deal, or breaking something that’s susceptible to break. 

Furthermore, not everything works according to you. So, there’s no point blaming yourself.

And even if it was your fault, what change would it make if you stopped trusting yourself or started to blame yourself? 

Nothing. 

Therefore, instead of bitterness towards yourself, show love and forgive because that’s what is needed the most.

4. Step back again and slow down:

After something bad has happened to you, you need to step back often. 

Not once or twice, but multiple times. 

You need to go into that place of silence where you can find yourself again. Stepping back and slowing down needs to be your regular because, after the chaos, choosing to find your way isn’t easy. 

Multiple shits will happen again that could make it harder to bear what’s already overwhelming.

So, pause whenever you feel like you have had enough.

5. Show courage and ask for help: 

If you fall, what would you do? 

You’ll use your hands to shake off the dirt and stand yourself on your feet. 

But what if you fall into a pit that’s way too deep? 

You cry out loud and ask for help. 

That’s what you need to do if something’s way beyond bad, and you can only get out of it by asking for help.

Don’t be a loser. Show courage and ask for help. Otherwise, stay in the pit.


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6. Don’t avoid food, water, and exercise:

Food, water, and exercise are what are needed the most when you’re going through a tough time.

These are the ones that will help you stay strong when everything’s telling you not to.

When we are sick, then it’s time to take our medicines. 

So, don’t avoid them at any cost.

7. Don’t drink, smoke, or hang out with negative people: 

Physical pain can be eased through proper medicines and physio sessions. But when something bad happens, in addition to physical pain (if it was an accident), we go through emotional pain as well.

That pain is heavy and makes us feel like we’re nothing. Many thoughts come to our mind, mostly the bad ones. 

We don’t understand them. We don’t want to experience them. They seem out of the world, and therefore, we think no doctor or someone close to us would be able to help us. 

So, we choose a path that somewhere helps us to numb it. And there you need to stop. Because if you numb an injured leg, you’ll move it till gets worse. 

Smoking, drinking alcohol, or taking drugs might seem helpful to forget what happened, but they only work till they’re into your system. 

As soon as you’re over them, you start to wonder again. 

But healing happens when you let go of your urge to get better quickly.

8. Read spiritual books: 

Reading spiritual books might seem a dull idea to one who’s already into books.

They know the philosophy, they know all things about good and bad, but they’re the definite people who need it the most. 

And if you’re not into books, reading would give you a new perspective. 

They won’t free you from the memories, but they can guide you on how to move forward. Putting your faith into something when everything is going bleak provides a magnificent strength you can never imagine.

9. Watch spiritual movies: 

If you’re not into books and the idea of it makes you puke, you can try watching movies based on spirituality or true stories. I would recommend you give a try to the following:

  • Unbroken
  • Batman Begins (yes, not a spiritual one, but it has something to move you.)
  • The Pursuit of Happyness
  • The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind
  • Miracles from Heaven

10. Stop recreating the incident. Accept it: 

When something bad has happened, it’s hard to surmount it. It’s hard to believe. It’s hard to accept. But you need to accept it and forgive yourself for whatever happened. 

If whatever happened has our role, we simply cannot accept it. 

We think, think, and think over and over and try to create different storylines other than what happened, which puts us into the guilty field, and we regret whatever happened. 

But you need to accept and assure yourself that if you had the chance to do something different, you would have done it.

11. Be patient and listen:

When we are going through hard times, it’s challenging to be patient and listen to people. We just want to change what happened or try to become someone who doesn’t care anymore about anything, which is a path to arrogance and self-destruction. 

You need to stop, you need to think, and you need to breathe because one who doesn’t care about anyone cares about themselves the less. 

12. Believe in the high power: 

Sometimes, we need friends. Sometimes, we need people who don’t like us. And sometimes we need whom no one can see. 

By higher power, it doesn’t mean you have to believe in GOD. 

For you, a higher power could be anything–things that bring hope to you. Things that help you see good in the world and what great you can do after whatever is left. 

I believe in GOD. 

I believe there’s a higher power beyond this universe that sends the flow of energy helping us to move and do our things. 

When we are down, it lifts us. When we are lost, it helps us find ourselves. 

And when we cannot see, it shows us the miracle no one can ever believe. 

So, whether you need strength, hope, or restarting, believe in the higher power you always believed in. 

13. Don’t quit on life: 

Quitting on life can never be the solution

It’s not the way out; instead, it’s the way that’ll make your loved ones follow when they face the bad, too. 

Do you want them to follow it? No, you probably won’t. So, why for yourself, then? 

Yes, it’s hard, but so you are. 

It’s time to do it (One by one)

Life is unexpected; it can be short, or it can be longer, who knows, no one.

But with the right tools, we can bear the unbearable without giving ourselves the hardest of the hardest times. 

The above dos and don’ts are for those unbearables, which you can only overcome by remaining true to your purpose. By remaining calm and believing in yourself. If you miss these two, no matter what you do, you can never overcome whatever happened.

But if you have the steadiness and willingness to understand, the points allow you to come back even stronger.

Therefore, whatever bad thing has happened to you, it’s time for you to choose differently. 

It’s time you move forward because this life won’t be given again. Whatever you want to do, do it right now, right here.


Thank you for giving your precious time to this article. I hope you got many good things from it, and will try in your life to make it better. Or at least stay humble.

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That’s it;

Nathawat Brothers

Putting thoughts for everyone.

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