It’s easy to back away from life and just allow it to drag you down. Stuff happens and sometimes they bring us to our knees or even on our faces sometimes. Resolve to keep going. Each time get up and get going.
This thought came to me today and I decided to share it here for those who might need to see this.
It’s interesting how we can be moving and doing things, like busy bees but just be buzzing around in circles accomplishing nothing. It’s necessary to stop, relax our minds and allow them to refresh. To keep going requires a healthy mind that is active and working for us.
When you are tired, take time to rest and do what recharges you.
Keep going when others say less than positive things to you or about you.
Keep going when things are not going the way you want them to. See how you can be innovative and push yourself to live your best life at different stages.
Life is worth living intentionally, so know hard times will come as will good times. Resolve to keep going regardless. Remember better days do come as life cycles through.
As a teacher, I talk with my students often, about the importance of reflecting, as they go throughout their time in my class. There is often much focus on looking ahead to accomplish different goals and dreams. There is also merit in taking the time to reflect and look back as we prepare for what’s ahead.
What are some merits of reflecting?
One thing that reflecting does is to show us how we have grown. This can be physically or mentally; let’s focus on mental and emotional growth. I am gratified to see my growth in these areas. I can look back at past relationships, experiences and things that were very hard spots in my life. I have grown through them and learnt how to be a better me. I have developed and honed my critical thinking skills and effectively manage how I react to different people and situations. When you look back at your life, how have you grown?
I am learning to be content with where I am in life. I don’t have all the things I desire but when I see what I have accomplished in the last few years, I have peace. I am reminded that I have what I need and different things come at different times. This also reminds me that I will look back at where I am now and see some changes as time passes by. I tell myself be patient, remain hopeful and keep moving.
I also learn to value the people I have around me now because they may not always be here. I lost my mother a few years ago and I am glad I went to be with her often, though I live on the other side of the world. There is nothing like spending time with those near and dear.
Reflecting also helps me to remember that things may seem hard now but time will pass. Like the other unpleasant things before, they won’t last forever. My response to them and how I handle them is what is important.
I remind myself to be open-minded, flexible and positive despite what is happening in my environment.
Reflecting as you look ahead
Reflect to seek out the positives and negatives that you have learnt from life. Use this knowledge to prepare for the future. Know how you approach and deal with different situations and people in the past. Be proactive and think about how you can make necessary changes to benefit you as you look ahead.
Mistakes are great learning opportunities. What can we learn from some colossal mistakes to avoid pitfalls as we forge into the future? This can be anything from spending crazily at certain times of the year to trying different diets; just about anything. One mistake I made was to have developed the habit of buying clothes just because they are on sale. Have I learnt from the folly of my ways? I sure have. When you live in small Japanese apartments this can be quite a nuisance, so I have cut back on that.
From reading this blog, you have probably noticed that I am passionate about living on a budget and being debt free. I reflect quite a bit on how I spend and think about how I can save and reward myself more meaningfully. Travel is my extravagant hobby, so I make certain concessions for this. I travel differently now than I did a few years ago because though I enjoy it, I have other priorities like saving for retirement. You are never too young to begin saving for retirement.
Take time to reflect to understand yourself more, make some changes to benefit yourself moving forward and to see your growth. There are far more benefits to reflecting on your life as you plan for what’s ahead. I hope you’ll enjoy these as you reflect.
Do you have a dream that seems to become dormant as time passes?
Is there a dream you have that you are afraid of pursuing because it seems too big?
Has life just come and made you forget to dream or keep going after a dream you have had for a while?
Keep your dreams smouldering. You may have to expand the dream or tweak it in some way but look for ways to feed the fire for your dreams. A dream dies only when we lay it to rest.
Learn to unpack that seemingly impossible dream and look at it with new eyes. How can you shape it so that you can accomplish it step by step. Remember to look at how to build something you dream of and not only think of the final product. Dream, research and plan well to enjoy success. Remember to season your expectations with time – some things take time.
Do you want to go back to school, travel the world, start a business, live abroad or whatever other dreams you have? What’s holding you back from pursuing this dream and breathing life into it? Knowing this, is the first step to bringing a dream to life. Interestingly, many of us never take practical steps to birthing a dream before giving up on it or trying to do so.
There are some dreams though that take hold and won’t give up on us. We try to tamp down this dream and live around it but it is there smouldering. That one may be the very one to pursue. Don’t let fear hold you back or thoughts of what others will think. I know sometimes a lack of finances may be an hindrance. However, we should find ways to cut back and save up to pour into such a dream or find a side hustle to get funds to invest in it. Dare I even suggest borrowing a modest loan with a low interest rate to use for this purpose? Think about it.
Finally, never stop dreaming. It can be a simple thing such as wanting to be more active and outgoing. The dreams that I am talking about here aren’t fairytale things. I am talking about goals, short term and long term that add value to your life. Essentially, at every stage of life we ought to build on old dreams or generate new ones as we grow.
Go ahead, take the first step to bringing that smouldering dream to life. Do the research, set a timeline and map out different paths to bring it to fruition. We often think, “what if I fail, but what if you fly?’
We all have dreams and goals as well as aspirations. There is nothing wrong with having lofty ones as well as small safe ones. We also want to accomplish or fulfil these at specific points. Unfortunately, life often has different twists and turns that may mess with our timelines. This means that we may not be where we thought we would be and certain points. As a result, we may feel disappointed and even lose motivation sometimes. What do we learn at these times?
Even when we do not meet certain goals on our timeline we are growing. It may not be in the way we envision and we may not be ticking off the goals we want to, when we want to, but…
How about other positive things that are happening that are helping you to mature and be a better you?
What can we learn through reflection about things that do not happen on our timelines? Embracing this is a part of growing. Something as simple as being flexible and changing how you view that situation is beneficial.
Remember to go at your own pace and remind yourself of this, when you feel like you are not where you want to be. Each person has his or her own journey. It’s so easy to forget this from time to time amidst expectations set out by society, family friends and even yourself. Give yourself a break. Applying that mindset when needed is a a part of personal growth.
Be on guard about mapping your timeline based on what others are doing or have done at a certain time. They are not you. You are not them. There is much growth in moving forward amidst disappointments and the unexpected events that delay dreams and goals coming to fruition.
There are some things that you can accomplish by yourself just by being disciplined and working hard, yes. There are others though that you can’t control – even though some people tend to differ on this. I am talking specifically about finding a committed partner for marriage and the ability to have kids and do so at a particular time or at all. It’s best to be open-minded and live life fully. Unfortunately, many people allow these disappointments to take away from the beauty of their lives.
My growth and the pace at which I grow looks different from everyone else’s. That’s life. Focus on finding another way to accomplish a dream. Embrace singleness, being childless or adopt a child (I know this sounds simplistic but getting into this mindset brings so much peace).
If you get nothing else from my diatribe, remember slow growth is still growth. Keep going and learn to be content where you are as you plot about how to move forward. Go at your own pace. This is something I remind myself of often. We all do well to remember this.
This is the first thought for many of us have when things start going awry.
How often do we say this when things are going suburb?
Why do we have this mindset that things should go well always? It’s actually a dangerous state of being that can cause life’s hits to knock us harder than they are meant to.
How about intentionally stopping and thinking about how you will grow through hardships. Look for how hardships stretch you and press through them knowing they pass. They are a part of the ebb and flow of life. Yes, it’s easier said than done. However, the way we respond to the ‘why me’ situations can break us or make us stronger.
It’s worth changing the narrative to the more positive, “how can I grow through this?”
Many hardships do make us strong in many ways. They also help us to lean on others and reveal who our true supporters are. It’s is empowering to look back on something that snared you, that you overcame and became better for it.
I will overcome, I will get through this and be better for it…
These are more mentally uplifting in the tough times. Speak these positive things over your situation and fight your way through.
Life sometimes gets rough and it feels like there is little hope.
Recurring or chronic pain, ill health, financial woes, relationship problems, job loss and a myriad of other afflictions blithe our way.
When life gets rough how do you cope and even thrive despite your circumstances?
As a woman who believes in the healing power of Jesus – whether it’s for my body, finances, relationships and so on – I, of course cry out to God in prayer. The circumstances often don’t change but my response to them do. This is essential because things do get better. It may not happen on our timetable and our ideal of better may not be what happens.
Good friends and family members are essential in these times. Their presence, an encouraging word and their prayers help me to know I have a network of people who care about me. This is fodder to give me reason to push on. This is why it is important to water your relationships. https://thisgracedlife.com/2019/07/06/water-your-relationships/
It is ok to cry and feel down for a bit. Staying in that frame of mind is defeating. Life is best lived as an active participant – in the good and bad times.
Be present for others in their rough times and help them to get through. We ought to live lives where we give and take and give and take – balance is key.
There is also nothing like some upbeat music to rock to and have that give you a ‘pick me up.’ I believe moving and activating your happy hormones is important. It helps to distract oneself for a bit when life gets rough. Read a good book, sleep, get out and have some laughs with friends.
Another good way to tackle the negative feelings that often accompany rough times is to think ahead. I enjoy envisioning when the rough patch passes. I make plans, write them down and pray over them. In this way, I am looking ahead instead of staying fixed on the present. Also it helps to look back and reflect on how you have overcome other rough patches in the past.
Prepare yourself mentally in the good times for when life gets rough. Some patches are way rougher than others as we know. Resolve to live life well in the good times to balance things out. Tell yourself that you can be joyful in all states and pursue this – yes it’s easier said than done but worth pursuing all the same.
Stay away from negative people.
When life gets rough, encourage yourself again and again and keep fighting. It is true that,”Anything worth having is worth fighting for.”
Cry out to God in the good times and bad times. God promises never to leave us or forsake us. If you have a habit of leaning on God then you will know of his faithfulness and have the assurance that you will get through.
Don’t ask ‘why me?’ Seek to see what you can learn about yourself and try to see tough situations as opportunities for growth, to become more resilient and to learn to persevere. “The race is not for the swift but for those who can endure.” I remind myself of this often.
Share your burdens with a friend or two. These are people in your life who are present, know how to pray with you, speak life into you and also know when to tell you to stop feeling sorry for yourself and give practical advice to get you moving ahead.
Seek professional help. See a pastor who is a trained counsellor,a psychologist or other health professional. Invest in your mental well being.
Think of practical things you can do to dig yourself out of the hole. If it is a financial smack down then you may have to cut back on some luxuries and/or get a second job.
Grieve, let the emotions out because suppressing them may not help. Cry, scream, put on some music, dance, go for a jog, clean like mad, do what works for you to get the negative energy out.
Change course. If something isn’t working and you keep trying then try another way or another thing.
Motivate yourself. Give yourself some pep talks and push and push.
Whatever it takes keep moving, keep trying, never give up on yourself and don’t compare your journey with others. Try to stay focused. What’s yours is yours, keep working for it.