2. Honor your struggles: This idea perhaps seems counter-intuitive. Our struggles often run deep, are painful, ongoing and fraught with uncertainty and fear. So why honor them? Seems much better to push them away, think about them as little as possible. We honor them because these experiences are the very origin of our growth as human beings. It is in these struggles that we often find our strength, expansiveness, and ultimately, wisdom. These are experiences in our lives that teach us, that help define how we move through the world. They are as important as the lovely things we are blessed to experience…because they are as if not more defining. How we handle/recover from/communicate about the struggles we are experiencing becomes integrated into the very fabric of who we are. So we must manage this process closely in order to have a deliberate say about how we think, talk about and cope with these challenges. Life is messy, imperfect, and often unfair and it is extremely complex to deal with these painful realities. But we must develop a clear policy to do so. And the policy must start with honoring our struggles as growth opportunities and as the price to pay for being human. Honoring your struggles includes getting in touch with your true emotions about those very struggles, getting more conscious and deliberate about how you cope with those struggles, communicating these challenges to a trusted other, and seeking help from a professional if you are unable to find your way through a dark night. Getting closer, rather than farther away from one's difficulties paradoxically makes these very difficulties less daunting, less ominous, and ultimately opens the door for greater acceptance and growth. Anger: Our Most Active Emotion
3. Honor your life with gratitude: Gratitude must be included in the equation in order to take the full inventory of one's life. And it's not easy to do, especially when one is struggling and experiencing inequities or pains of life. But it is critical to set aside deliberate time to practice gratitude. Gratitude comes in many shapes and sizes. It's easy to have gratitude for the really big and wonderful things. Because we are so moved from emotion and pleasure or relief, it is almost an automatic, involuntary process to be grateful. But it is for the smaller, more intimate, more sustaining, mundane, and difficult parts of life for which we must practice regular gratitude. Gratitude for making it through the day, for a garden blooming, for a moment shared with a child/friend/significant other, for a kindness showed by a stranger, for a perfect cup of coffee, for an easy commute, for a quiet moment with a pet, for a sunset, a bird, a flower, are all part of what makes living in this world magical and tolerable and memorable. Life will change if you practice more gratitude. It’s guaranteed! Is Gratitude The Key To A Good Relationship?
More from YourTango: James Holmes; What Happened?