All of our experiences come with opportunities, we just don’t always see them. That’s because our brains are too busy categorizing and defining these moments as either ‘good’ or ‘bad,’ to be able to see the bigger picture. When we jump out of the present, we block our ability to see potential opportunities that can come from it all, especially the challenges we face.
An awesome way to open ourselves up to possibility in times of upheaval is to remember that we’ve also been given an opportunity here to learn, love, reflect, build strength and live more authentically. With this in mind, problems seem to transform into solutions and we find new ways of being in the process. The less energy I put into resisting adversity, the more space I create to receive guidance, direction and eternal love from the universe when I really need it. Here’s just a few doors that can be opened by the winds of challenge for all of us:
We can react with fire when we’re faced with the hard stuff or respond with water. Either way, we can learn a lot about ourselves when we reflect on how we’re behaving in challenging situations. This part of the personal development puzzle involves pure self-expression in whatever form works for you (mine’s journaling), as well as observation and inquiry. We ask ourselves questions and then sit in unanswered silence.
Challenge can throw us off balance, which is actually a good thing because it requires us to consciously re-stabilize before moving forward. Self-reflection can be very powerful when we’re getting grounded in the wake of the storm. It gives us a moment to pause and catch our breath.
Reflection paves the way for personal growth. When we step back from a challenge and observe how we’re behaving in it, we have the opportunity to respond differently in the future. It’s not about judging ourselves, it’s about becoming aware of how we are and taking the steps necessary to be the best human being we can.
The lesson I seem to be learning over and over again is about self-love and total self-acceptance. Therefore, each challenge and experience I have brings me the opportunity to grow my heart muscle. In this way, I view many traumas, changes and pains as balancing, necessary and fueling.
Just like we bulk up in the winter, we build strength in the darker hours of our lives. Challenge asks us to find that inner reserve and keep going, stronger than ever. In this way, uphill battles provide us with opportunities to build up our superpowers within.
I lost my Dad a few years ago. I mourned, crumbled, cried and then eventually…I found gratitude. Losing him made me profoundly grateful for the people and relationships I still had in my life, and ever more aware of the fragile nature of existence. I was given the opportunity to fall in love with my life all over again. If you ask me, that’s a pretty big silver lining.
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