Britney Spears’ song “Lucky” got me thinking. I am so blessed. I wouldn’t change a thing –except paying bills…- So why do I feel empty when I live such a blessed life?
Society tells me I have a blessed life. I am wife to a fabulous husband who serves his country. We are financially stable. We have good health. Our family is loving and happy. I am blessed to stay at home and raise my daughter, and have a career that can follow my hubby anywhere.
But that lingering feeling of emptiness is there. So why do I feel empty when I actually live a blessed life? Am I just ungrateful? No! And you’re not ungrateful, either. We just need a little tlc. Here are 9 common reasons you feel empty inside, even when your world is happy.
9 Reasons Why You Feel Empty When You Actually Live a Blessed Life
- You’ve been so busy all your life that you feel empty without it.
- You aren’t feeling challenged.
- You don’t feel important.
- Your blessed life is society’s dream, not yours.
- You hide your true self to keep up your “blessed life” image.
- Your mental health is suffering.
- You are not chasing your passion.
- You’re feeling lonely.
- You’re stressed and need a break.
- What does feeling empty signify to you? Tell me in the comments!
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While I have hacked mental health for over 20 years, that experience does not make me a mental health professional. This content is educational and informative and is not to replace the advice of your mental health team or doctor. For more information, please see my disclosure.
“She’s so lucky she’s a star. But she cry, cry, cries in her lonely heart, thinking if there’s nothing missing in my life then why do these tears come at night?”— Lyrics to “Lucky” by Britney Spears
9 Reasons Why You Feel Empty When You Actually Live a Blessed Life
You’ve been so busy all your life that you feel empty without it.
Life keeps you busy. Even a blessed life is filled with work, hobbies, kids, pets, bills, etc. But kids grow up, we lose interest in hobbies, or we found the secret to being “un-busy” –if you find that secret, let me know! I want in too!-
When your routine and schedule change, you feel lost and empty. Like something is missing in life. That’s just us learning to adjust to change. It is perfectly normal to feel empty, lost, or even confused when you suddenly find yourself suddenly un-busy.
As a military wife with a young child, I was constantly finding myself running out of hours in the day. At one point, I was so busy that I fainted from exhaustion! –Thankfully, I fainted when I was home alone. My husband had taken our daughter to school that day.- Life was so hectic in those years.
These days life is slower. My daughter is almost an adult. My husband has better work hours. We’re an un-busy family now, and I find myself with much more “me” time. I felt completely empty at first. I felt I had failed as a mom since I had extra time on my hands. But in reality, it meant I succeeded. I raised a thriving young adult who didn’t need me to do everything for her.
Now, I am taking better care of myself through self care and personal development. Hobbies and time with loved ones make me have more fun. I started a career in blogging so I can help others take charge of their mental health. My Kindle has never been so full of books I have actually purchased and read! –Now I have an excuse to buy new ones since I am running out of reading material.-
Show yourself some kindness and remind yourself that being busy isn’t your life’s goal, but enjoying your life. Pinterest has some great ideas for how to enjoy your free time!
You aren’t feeling challenged.
We all want to be mentally stimulated. And let’s face it. Boredom is a bitch. You know the feeling that no matter what you do, you just can’t seem to stimulate and entertain yourself.
When we sit in our comfort zone for too long, we can experience boredom and feel like we’re stuck in a rut.
Here’s a few quick suggestions for conquering boredom:
- Try a new hobby
- Work on getting fit
- Take on a challenging task at work
- Get the creative juices flowing
- Read a different genre book
- Go to forums and help others.
- Work on creating a positive mindset
- Change your routine
- Assess your dreams and create a plan to reach your goals
A great way to add a challenge to your life is to take part in day, week, monthly or yearly challenges! When I was a beginner photographer, I joined a Facebook group that sent out a weekly challenge to test our skills. I learned so much! And it challenged me to try new techniques and have new experiences. You can find many 30 day challenges on Pinterest.
You don’t feel important.
When I feel empty, it’s usually because I feel what I am doing doesn’t matter.
Recently, I felt anyone could do what I do. I wasn’t needed anymore. But that’s not true at all. Even though I am no longer that go-to person who everyone relies on in my family, doesn’t mean that I am replaceable. And you’re not replaceable either. You may be the person for someone that will give them an honest opinion, has a kind word, or you are their support system.
When you are doing your job right, especially as a parent, you’re actually are needed less. It feels very counterproductive, and can leave you asking, “why do I feel empty?”. When your mechanic does his job right, your car needs less maintenance; not more. Same goes for you!
I also realize, I don’t have to be the star of life’s movie to be an important character. Just like a great movie, there is a main character and many great supporting characters. And sometimes those supporting characters are the most loved. –Where would Harry Potter be without Ron and Hermione?-
In my role as a military wife and mom, I have a very important big job of supporting my family so they can rise to their challenges. Being happily married to a soldier means that, for many years, my big goals and dreams have been on hold so I can support my soldier. It doesn’t mean I can’t have my dreams; it just means I have to change what they look like. Fulfilling my role in my family means I don’t always stand out. But it’s doesn’t mean that I am not important.
When my husband got his promotion last year, he brought home flowers and did a big speech to his coworkers that none of it would have been possible without me. I was flabbergasted. I didn’t realize how important I had been to his success. Those little trivial things I had done that I thought weren’t important helped him feel confident enough that he could focus on his career goal while being a loving husband and father.
So a shout out to all the supporting characters in life who make life easier for wonderful kids, our first responders, those hardworking executives, animal activists, and so many more important jobs.
But, if you feel you are being taken advantage of, have a conversation with your loved one and tell them what you need to feel loved and appreciated. Many times our loved ones get so caught up in being busy they forget to slow down and appreciate others. My hubby, being a super busy guy, needs a gentle reminder to be more appreciative. And don’t forget to show your appreciation to others as well. There may be those that do not feel comfortable expressing their needs yet.
Your blessed life is society’s dream, not yours.
Our society is full of opinions –yes, they’re opinions and not facts- about how to live an ideal life.
For the “ideal life”, society deems we marry, have 2.5 kids –at least-, work ourselves to the bone while also simultaneously raising a perfect family. If you’re a woman, you also have to adhere to society’s beauty standards. And men, well, they are supposed to be workaholics who don’t have emotions. It also demands we keep our schedule busy from sun up to sun down, and sacrifice our happiness to fit in.
Life is not a “one size fits all” scenario. And it is exhausting trying to shove your amazing self into society’s tiny box. We are so blessed to have a variety of different people. There are women and men who gave up having families just to progress medical science. We have stay at home parents of all sexes now. Women can also have those high power careers now. Men can be emotional and still be strong.
You do not have to live up to society’s ideal version. You get to choose your version of a blessed life. It’s your life, not anyone else’s. Live it so you’re happy!
You hide your true self to keep up your “blessed life” image.
We all want to fit in. Who doesn’t want to feel part of the crowd? But by pretending to be, like, and feel things you aren’t; all you’re truly doing is alienating yourself from your tribe.
Embracing your uniqueness and showcasing your quirks allows people to love you for you. Hiding behind a false persona is exhausting. Not to mention that you just feel unhappy that people cannot accept your true self.
I use to “fake it until I made it” to fit into groups of people that were accepted. But I really felt a deep depression that no one knew the real me. No one knew what I really loved, felt, or experienced. I just always felt that I did not fit in. My deep desire to fit in was what was actually keeping me feeling empty.
By accepting that I was different, I learned not only to like myself, but found people that liked me. My life feels much fuller and rich by truly enjoying myself and the people that love me for my uniqueness.
Your mental health is suffering.
When your mental health is off, you can feel numb to your surroundings. It’s very hard to appreciate your blessed life when you feel terrible. A few mental illnesses that can cause you to ask yourself, “Why do I feel empty?” are:
- Post Traumatic Stress Disorder
- Bipolar Disorder
- Borderline Personality Disorder
- Anxiety Disorder
- and other mental health disorders
Whether you need self care, medication, therapy, or psychiatric help; prioritizing your mental health can help you feel positive again and appreciating your blessed life in no time.
You are not chasing your passion.
We all have experienced jobs we hate. They zap our energy fast and leave us feeling empty and numb in our life. It becomes a chore to get out of bed and start the day. We feel our lives have become meaningless.
While not everyone can navigate a big career change in their lives; you can pursue your passion! Start that dream garden, volunteer your time and work with pups that need help, or start a blog and start writing!
I volunteered with local dog rescues to help train foster dogs for their new lives. In later years, I started photographing rescue pups to help them get adopted. And now I have a blog to help others with their mental health. I am a woman of many loves and passions, so I dabble in all of them and really live a blessed life now.
Adding your passion to your day will give you a reason to look forward to your day. It may even give you the confidence to make big changes!
You’re feeling lonely.
Face it, making friends as an adult isn’t as easy as it is as a child. Back then, all we needed was to go to class together. Some of us are truly blessed to find true friends through work. I was not one of them.
We’re a military family, which means every few years, we move. And we’ve done this 5+ times now. Each time, I have to get new (in person) friends.
I wish I had this book when we first started moving around. This is a workbook that helps you navigate the waters of making friends, identifying healthy relationships with friends, and how to meet new friends!
I had to learn to make friends the hard way. In former cities, I was lucky that people adopted me into their friend groups. As an introvert, it took me 2 years to find the friends that I have now in our current city!
This book has sections to help introverts and extroverts make friends. As well as many exercises to help you create lasting, healthy, and strong friendships.
Some of my best friendships have come from joining groups with interests similar to mine. In our last city, I tried Dungeons & Dragons. I wanted a weekly outing that involved people and having free fun. Well, the free part turned out not to be true as I started buying a surplus of snacks for the games -I should have known as I love to snack!-, but the friends that I made are some of my most cherished. We still get together each week virtually to chat and play.
I have made friends through volunteering with dog rescue groups, church activities, local neighborhood get activities, Facebook groups, and even made friends by creating a doggie playgroup for my new puppy.
A blessed life should always include good friends!
You’re stressed and need a break.
Even the most positive of us get stressed. And with all the tragedy and heartache in the world, we’re bound to feel drained and empty.
It’s when we’re feeling empty that we need to love ourselves the most. Self care will help you feel like yourself in no time.
When I am feeling excessively stressed, I take a sabbatical. I ditch social media and the news. “Ignorance is bliss” is a saying for a reason. I take a day(s) off work to clear my mind and reduce my stress levels. Getting away from my stressors helps me refocus on feeling good.
On my self care day, I partake of some of my favorite hobbies! On terrible days, I play video games. My favorite game that helps me relax –and is super cute- is Stardew Valley. The cute animals and simple graphics help me destress. Farm games really mellow me out.
I also take up my favorite hobbies! And mine involves power tools!! It’s like getting your anger and frustration out, but in a safe and acceptable manner. I repurpose and repaint furniture, which can require sanding, drilling, cutting boards, power spraying, and more! After a day of working with my hands, I feel happy and tired.
I end my day with a hot bath with lavender essential oil to help soothe my senses and help promote a restful sleep.
Feeling empty in your life is a sign that something needs to change. Whether that means you need to express your needs, take a break, or spend time with loved ones. Remember to take time to love yourself.