Recently, a friend whom I admire greatly shared with me some heartbreaking circumstances that she is facing. Truly heartbreaking. This is one of the most beautiful people you could ever meet – why is she facing such hardship? She doesn’t deserve this.
The unanswerable question: Why do bad things happen to good people?
The same day, I read the following by Hal Elrod, “I’ve been lucky enough to hit rock bottom twice in my life. Not once, but twice.” Once, he was hit by a drunk driver, severely injured and nearly died. Another time, he was $450,000 in debt and battling depression. He wrote how both situations pushed him forward.
The irony of hardship is that it forces you to re-evaluate your life. It drives you to become better. It takes either desperation or inspiration to change. Sometimes the hard times in our lives allow us to step back and see from a perspective we wouldn’t have otherwise.
But, I’m convinced, it’s not circumstances that change us. It’s mindset. Sometimes the circumstances serve us to see life in a new perspective – giving a new clarity, but it’s our choice how we respond, act, and think.
It is possible to have two people experience the same difficulties but their reactions and the way they handle things can be completely different – based on their life paradigm. Which, from personal experience, can often shift during difficult seasons. You can choose to push forward, despite whatever difficulties come your way, to keep going towards your goals and fight your way through to live your best life, or you can become embittered, entitled and hardened.
That said, I actually believe it’s healthy to express the pain and bitterness you feel if you ever suffer extreme hurt. Feel it. Express it. Then, rise above it.
“Whatever you hold in your mind on a consistent basis is exactly what you will experience in your life” Tony Robbins
The thoughts we think become our actions, our actions shape us and forge our very identity. But it all starts with our thoughts. We can’t always control the circumstances in our lives, but we can always control our thoughts. Sometimes, it takes sheer, raw determination.
There have been times in my life when I have carried positive, inspirational books with me, and read them through tear-blurred eyes, determined not to succumb to the pain of my circumstances. Little by little the choices you make to think differently, to think better, become natural. The way you see the world becomes your reality. Look for the best in it.