I once read that people who journal to identify lessons from painful situations generally move on more quickly and easily than people who write merely to vent their emotions.
In discovering opportunities for growth, we empower ourselves to see whatever we’ve been through as something that can be ultimately beneficial, even if it’s tremendously uncomfortable in the short-term.
Every cloud has a silver lining; there is a meaning and purpose to everything that happens to you. When you’re facing a problem, ask yourself the following questions:
- How did this happen?
- How can I view this situation differently?
- In what way can this loss work for me?
- What can I learn about myself here?
- What is there that is positive in this situation?
- What is the first step I need to take so that I can bounce back quickly?
Make a ‘Feel Good Folder’
One of the best ways to stay optimistic when times are tough is to focus on what you have instead of what you lack. If, for example, you’re going through a really difficult break-up, instead of focusing on the things you’re going to miss about your ex, make a list of things you have in your life right now: good friends, a steady income, unique talents, a cute pet, etc. Gratitude is one of the best tools for overcoming any difficulty and it’s particularly useful when things aren’t going well.
Try to look on the positive side
When you’re in the midst of hard times, it’s certainly a challenge to see the benefits of your situation, but there’s almost always something good that could come from the bad. For example, if you just lost your job, maybe this means you’re going to find a career path that’s even more fulfilling for you. Almost every difficult situation has a silver lining, but most of them you won’t be able to see unless you really look closely and focus your attention on finding it.
Note Your Mindset
Why is it when one bad thing happens, it starts to feel as if everything is going wrong? It’s because, as the quote above says, we see things not as they are but as we are. Everything we experience is filtered through our own internal dialogue and perspective. When things are great, we tend to see the whole world through rose-tinted glasses. When times are tough, a darkness tends to tint everything. The wonderful news is: you have the power to control how you see the world. Take note of how you’re viewing things and make the choice (even when it’s hard!) to seek out the good rather than the bad.
It’s one thing to stay positive and present when things are going well, but it’s really challenging when times get tough. If you’re going through a tough time, I hope these tips help you and I hope you continue to remind yourself that things will get better.
“Life is always going to contain a little darkness, but we get to decide whether or not we recognize and appreciate the light.”