To identify the source of your discouragement, it’s helpful to talk to someone who can offer you insight and guidance. But be careful—you can talk your problems to death and get nowhere! That’s why the Bible says, ‘Be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves.’ So,
(1) Always do what’s right. Few things increase discouragement like regret or a guilty conscience. It’s tough to apologise, admit your faults, forgive, restrain your temper, bear a deserved blame, or start over. But deciding to do these things when they’re appropriate always pays off. Be willing to view your life realistically, see yourself as you are, and accept what’s true.
(2) Remember, timing is important. Often, we look for relief in the valley instead of waiting for the clarity that comes from standing on the mountaintop. That’s because it takes a lot of effort to get to the top of the mountain! When we’re experiencing the darkness of the valley, it’s tempting to make changes we hope will relieve our discomfort. But as Dr Robert Schuller said: ‘When you are on top of the proverbial mountain… is the time to make decisions. Here’s why: You… see your situation more clearly. You are moving to something, not just from something. You decide using positive data, not negative. You are more likely to move from peak to peak instead of valley to valley.’
On the other hand, if you keep persevering while you’re in the valley, not only will you make it to higher ground where you can make wiser decisions, but you will have developed character, which will serve you well throughout life.