When Life Gets Tough: 5 Ways To Move Through Turmoil

“Any situation you are in has been perfectly planned for you by a self-organizing universe, invested in your growth and designed to foster your self-actualization. Whatever is happening, what lesson does it contain for you? Given that it’s not random, what is its importance to your growth? What are the strengths you’re being invited to more fully develop, and the weaknesses you’re being invited to let go? “ – Marianne Williamson

Life doesn’t always unfold the way we intend it to or the way we want it to. Life is meant to throw us curveballs in order to wake us up. If there were no curveballs, we would lack the impetus to ask some of the deeper, harder, more profound questions.

Why is this happening?

What does this mean?

Even better…What does this mean for me?

It is said that nothing happens to us, but rather that everything is happening for us. What does this mean?

Think back over your life. Think back over your past difficulties. Now that you’ve got some space and distance from these tumultuous times, are you able to see that these challenges actually grew you up in some way? Are you able to see that you’re stronger, wiser, more resilient because of them? Are you able to see how these difficult times have intricately shaped your life?

For me, being sick for over 20 years informed almost everything that I now love, seek, practice and even think about. If I hadn’t been chronically ill for so long, I wouldn’t do what I do now as a health and wellness coach. My health wouldn’t mean nearly as much to me. My health likely wouldn’t be nearly as good as it is now. My interests would be different. I might not have the compassion, empathy or intuition that I now rely on so much.

So instead of drowning under our difficult times, can we instead see these times as teachers that have come to graduate us to new levels?

Here is how you can navigate your difficult times so you can get as much out of them as possible:

  1. Realize that the current forecast will change and that you’re meant to sit in this storm for awhile. Surrender to the storm and you’ll likely pass through it more quickly and with more ease.
  2. Meditate.  Sitting in some silence everyday changes you. It opens you to new possibilities that have always been there, but have perhaps gone unacknowledged. In other words, the unconscious becomes conscious.
  3. Talk with someone. Perspective changes can change an entire life. Talk with someone that you trust and that you feel sees life through a broader lens. Gain a different perspective.
  4. If it is true (and let’s assume that it is) that everything is happening for us, what greater purpose can your challenge present? How could this be changing you for the better?
  5. Write a letter to the Universe. Pour out your thoughts on paper. Write to the Universe and perhaps you’ll get a response. I wouldn’t expect a verbal, linear response (in the way that a friend would respond). But anything is possible. Instead, look for some synchronicities in the coming days and weeks. Look for something that keeps showing up. Be present in order to see what’s happening.

I always think of difficult times as your soul’s way of clearing away the clutter. Making room for something new. It’s like it’s saying, Chin up, Sweetheart. We’re seeing if you’re ready for the next step in your evolution.

Meet the challenge. You’ll be glad you did.


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