February 27, 2023

What to do when you’re not coping?

Are you feeling low, overwhelmed or stressed? We have a list of resources to help you understand why you are not coping and what you can do to feel better.

There can be times when you feel like you cannot focus or you are not coping well. While it can be difficult, it is important to understand what it means when you are not coping. In this article, we’ve created an extensive guide on what to do when you’re not coping.

Before we go any further: if you feel like you are in a mental health crisis and need immediate support reach out to the First Response Service by calling 111 and selecting the mental health option.

What does ‘not coping’ mean?

Everyday life can be overwhelming. It can be hard to recover from these feelings. It can make you feel hopeless, emotional and exhausted (both physically and mentally). Everyone feels this way at some point in life.

When pushed to your limit, it can feel like you are not coping well.

Why am I not coping?

Whether you are overwhelmed with a big to-do list or going through challenges back-to-back in life, it can affect your wellbeing. It is difficult to find a healthy balance and manage stress and anxiety.

But there are some signs that you can look out for if you are too stressed or anxious and not coping.

The signs to look out for:

  • Feeling tired all the time
  • Difficulty in focusing
  • Frequent mood changes
  • Difficulty in sleeping
  • Not feeling like talking to people
  • Suicidal thoughts


What to do when you’re not coping?

Smiling woman by a window

Here are some things that you can do when you are not coping. Remember, you are not alone. Help and support is available.

Take time for yourself

When you are constantly going through difficult circumstances, it is important to take time out for yourself. Pausing allows you to distract yourself and realign your focus. Use this time to learn a new skill, pursue a hobby, exercise or even relax.

Take a break

Give yourself a break. Try resting to make sure your body and mind have recovered. Are you finding it hard to unwind? Try meditation or some relaxation exercises which can help you calm down.

Be kind to yourself

Coping takes time. Be aware of your feelings and accept that it takes work. Be confident in yourself and believe that you can do it! And most importantly, be proud of yourself for making it this far in life.

Spend time with people you are close to

Spending time with the people you trust and sharing your thoughts and feelings with them can help you de-stress. It can also help you understand things differently and get solutions easily.

Do you want to meet new people? You can join one of our Good Mood Cafes. Read John’s experience at our Good Mood Cafes and how it has benefited his mental health journey.

Reach out for help

If you feel like you cannot open up to anyone you trust, you can reach out to organisations and charities for support. Not sure who you can contact? Here are a few helplines you can reach out to:

In an emergency dial 999.

In Cambridgeshire and Peterborough, you can access the NHS First Response Service to speak with a mental health crisis team by calling 111 and selecting the mental health option.


Call 116 123

24 hours a day, everyday


11am to 11pm, everyday

You can find more information on helplines on our get help now page.

Here at CPSL Mind, we provide a variety of services and have resources that you can refer to for your wellbeing. If you haven’t already, head on over to our wellbeing wheel. It’s a fantastic tool that will help you get the right support in Cambridgeshire and Peterborough.


 What to say to someone who is not coping?

Has someone opened up to you about not being OK? Is a loved one having a difficult time? If you want to assist them, here are five things that you can do to support them:

  1. Listen to their thoughts and feelings without any judgement.
  2. Tell them that it’s okay and you are there to support them.
  3. Help them come up with a solution.
  4. Remind them to look after themselves.
  5. Check on them and keep the conversation going about how they are feeling.

Also have a look at our guide on how to help someone who is not coping.

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