There is not one person who will avoid some sort of struggle or hardship in life. In fact, there are things that happen in life that often shake us to our very core.
The essential nature of being alive and being human is to experience life in its purest form -- the wins and losses, celebrations and challenges, and the good with the bad.
Some of these experiences are not favorable. We might be in pain, physically or emotionally -- we hurt. Often we feel betrayed by life itself, we feel it is unfair and question why we have to go through these struggles.
What we don't realize is that these struggles are a gift from life itself. When we come face to face with a struggle, a low point in life, be it an illness, a relationship breakdown or financial ruin, at the time we are lost in darkness.
Having had two brain hemorrhages, I know what it is like to be lost in the abyss of darkness with no slither of hope of any light shining through.
You can't see your way out of it, let alone focus on the light at the end of the tunnel. Some refer to this as the "dark night of the soul" -- I call it the emergence of the soul. It is in this place that your soul speaks to you and you begin to realize that you are not your circumstances, but something far greater.
Everything you are going through, every struggle, pain or hardship, is actually a gift. It is a gift because it is in the struggle that you are brought to your knees, where you question the purpose of your life. It is a gift because it asks you to go deeper into yourself and find the gold of who you are.
The common saying "What doesn't kill you makes you stronger" has a very profound truth to it. What you overcome in life makes you richer in every way. When you are in that dark place looking for a way out of your hardship, you are faced with two choices: give up or tap into the inner resources that you didn't even know you had, and come through it stronger and more humble than you were before.
Life never hands out things that you can't handle. How you approach it will determine how you come through the other side. You can assume the victim role and feel sorry for yourself, or you can reach into the essence of who you are and find your inner strength. Then demand the self worth and ability to rise up and meet your challenges heart on. You need to believe you can do this -- you are powerful, you are amazing and you are inspirational!
I am sure you have heard many stories of people saying that they feel blessed to have gone through their hardship as this defines who they are today. This is not something that people just say, this is something they know.
Through darkness comes light, through fear comes love and through pain comes triumph.
This is the triumph of the human spirit; it is not in a select few, it is in every one of us.
Your struggles and hardships are your gifts so that you can reach deep down inside of yourself and discover your inner power and the glory of who you are. Use them to share your message of hope and love with the world.
The world needs your voice, your message and your experiences so that they can resonate in the hearts of others and give hope and courage to show that it is possible to overcome anything.
Let us share our gifts with each other as we will be far richer for the experience.
For more by Mary Paleologos, click here.
For more on emotional wellness, click here.