20 Hope Filled Reminders To Hold Onto When Life Gets Hard
Often times things have to go wrong in order to go right. In fact, if the road in life is always easy, you’re likely going the wrong way.
Here’s what you need to keep in mind when life gets rough:
1. You need to lean into it
Accept that the situation sucks. Don’t run from it.
2. You are being tested for a reason
Have you ever gone through a tough situation, and after the dust has settled you realized that you couldn’t have ever learned the things you learned if hand’t been for that season of adversity? I think we’ve all been there. Trust that when times get tough, you don’t have to understand why it’s happening. Just know that the reason will reveal itself one day, even if it’s not on this side of history.
3. Learn to realize teachable moments
If you adopt the skill to look for teachable moments and learn in every situation (good and bad) you will become filled with wisdom and increase your personal potential in life. A simple way to start this practice is to ask yourself, “what did I learn from this moment?”, and jot down your thoughts in a journal, tablet or smartphone.
4. You’ll be back on track again soon
You’re on your daily commute. You then realize your exit is closed and you’ve got to find another way to your destination. It’s not ideal and inconvenient, but you have to find a detour. You look up an alternate route on your GPS, you get back on track, and eventually arrive at your destination. This is a lot like life. You’re moving along doing your thing, and BAM! Plans fall apart, somebody doesn’t show up, your laptop doesn’t turn on, you put hand soap in the dish washer, you get the phone call from you doctor. When these things happen, it’s not a license to close up shop and give in. Much like your commute, when the exit is closed, you immediately find another way that will get you where you need to go. Unexpected circumstances happen. Don’t fight the detours. Learn to love them. You’ll find a another way and you’ll be back on track soon enough.
5. This will add to your experience resume
Today, with the amount of resources we all have, becoming talented or skilled is easy. Being experienced is rare. By going through life and accumulating experience through times can actually benefit you. The key is to evaluate and learn from your rough spot in life.
6. Hunt for humor
We all have different taste for humor, but we all have a taste for it. You need to hunt for humor when times get tough. Laughter literally changes the chemicals released in your brain, offering a positive mood shift.
7. Not getting what you want, may be the best thing you ever get
Pastor Rick Warren puts it wisely.
“The greatest detriment to tomorrow’s success is today’s success”
8. Remove the pile of crap on your living room floor
Austin Kleon, author of Show Your Work, amusingly paints this picture with words.
“If someone took a dump in your living room, you wouldn’t let it sit here, would you”
He is referring to internet trolls who’s aim is to leave nasty comments, for the sake of leaving them on your blog or social channels. This quote actually comes from his wife, who suggests you delete the comment and block that person from interacting with you via leaving comments on your blog or social channel.
Here is my point, “If someone took a dump in your mind, you wouldn’t let it sit there, would you?” You might have friends or family members who all they do is drop negative dumps into your mind with their words. You need to get that kind of crap out of your life. The old saying still remains, “you become what you think about,” and if all you’re getting is negative reinforcement jammed into your brain, you’ll probably just be full of crap one day.
9. Perseverance wins
Life for everyone, isn’t about one struggle. It’s a string of many. To win you must persevere and simply not give up. The Germans call this Sitzfleisch: Staying Power.
10. Maybe this is the worst scenario
What if this is the worst scenario? Is it what you imagined to be? Probably not. We often times let our minds fabricate worst case scenarios that falsely lead us to believe that the worst case scenario is worse than it actually is.
11. This is your chance to get creative
Your most creative moments will come when things get shaken up. It will force you to think, which oddly enough is a disappearing skill. When you’re feeling the pain of your situation, pushing yourself to get creative in order to respond to the circumstance will help you realize that you can turn your pain into gain. It’s probable that what you’re going through, is something that somebody else one day, will go through as well. There’s not a better of a person who has experienced the same kind of pain that can help one who is currently going through it right now. That person could be you. Get creative on how to respond to your circumstance and one day you’ll help someone else get through it as well.
12. Adversity and failure are like success
It’s not somewhere your arrive or something you are. Both success and failure are dependent on how you deal with the current moment.
13. Anger doesn’t help
Seth Godin, author of the Linchpin, illustrates that being angry doesn’t solve much by trying to teach fire a lesson.
Fire is hot. That’s what it does. If you get burned by fire, you can be annoyed at yourself, but being angry at the fire doesn’t do you much good. And trying to teach the fire a lesson so it won’t be hot next time is certainly not time well spent.
Maybe you’ve gotten burned by somebody in a relationship or bad business deal or cut off on the highway. Being angry at this person and trying to teach them a lesson or change them isn’t the best use of your time. It’s not your job to change what can’t be changed, so stop wasting energy being angry.
14. Let people in
When you’re going through a rough patch in life, your friends and family want to help. Many times the best help they provide is simply just reassuring you that you have someone that cares about you and is ready to help if you need anything.
15. Nobody is perfect and that’s how it should be
Often times we blind ourselves with the pursuit of perfection. When a slip up occurs or when something doesn’t go according to our plans, we crumble and are fast to label ourselves as failures because of it. Here is the good news: Nobody is perfect and we all make mistakes. Failures and adversity in life should be viewed as lessons that we learn from. With that in mind, if you aren’t making honest mistakes, it’s a sign that you aren’t learning. And when you aren’t learning, it’s a sign that you aren’t growing.
16. A setback sets you up for a comeback
When you workout, you cause damage to your muscles. The time in between your workouts is when you recover. This recovery time allows you to come back to the gym and train harder with more volume and heavier weights. Without the damage in previous workouts, you wouldn’t be able to progressively lift heavier weights, thus increasing your strength and physique. The same concept applies in your life. Every time a setback hits you, it toughens you up and causes a little damage. You do what you need to recover from the blow, and you comeback with more wisdom, knowledge and experience making you stronger for life.
17. Somebody has it worse
One of the most fascinating ways to get unstuck when you’re in a tough time, is to find somebody else to help. It takes the attention of you and you do good at the same time. Somebody always has it worse, train yourself to find people to help.
18. This feeling will pass
When you’re in a storm in life, you feel unpleasant. This feeling won’t last forever. It’s a season that will teach you a few things, and then it will pass. Feelings, good and bad will all pass regardless of how intense the might feel right now.
19. Great things take time
Typically, something achieved overnight is of little value. That’s not to say it’s good or bad. If you’re on a quest, understand it will take time. It will also take grit, because things probably won’t go as planned. If you’re on a quest that takes longer than 48 hours to complete, I commend you. Many people perform tasks, which are done in short time spans. Quests on the other hand, take a lot longer and while the immediate rewards seem dismal, if you stay in the game long enough you’ll certainly reap some big time benefits. Press on.
20. Giving up and moving on is ok
Giving up doesn’t always mean you’re weak, sometimes it means you are strong enough to let go.
What about you?
How do you creatively manage yourself and your thoughts when life gets tough?
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