I believe that everything in life happens for a reason. That at the right place and the right time, great things can happen (which you can read more about here.) But sometimes, bad things can happen too.
And when they do, it can be all too easy to throw in the towel and give up.
Every Up has a Down
Not everything is going to go your way. No matter how much you plan something, it can still go wrong. Bad things can happen at anytime, at anyplace, to anyone. You lose a great client, an unexpected bill pops up, someone gets ill, the car gets a puncture on the way to an important meeting (nothing to do with the way you were driving – too fast – or mounting that kerb! Maybe that one was just me!!)
Here’s the thing though, there is generally a good part. Just because something bad happens, doesn’t mean it’s going to STAY bad. And if nothing bad ever happened, how would you know what good looks like?
And even though you may not know it yet, ‘bad’ things generally happen for a reason. As I mentioned before, there’s a purpose for everything. And often negative experiences can be the driving force behind something new beginning.
The Power of Stories
Take Fairy Tales for example. When the clock strikes midnight, it seems like Cinderella is going to lose everything just as suddenly as she got it, only for her quick exit to kickstart the prince into looking for her, marrying her, and giving her the ‘happy ending’.
Or look at Jack and the Beanstalk, where he’s tricked into giving up the family cow for a single bean. It looks like all is lost, only for said bean to suddenly grow into a giant beanstalk which kickstarts a new adventure for Jack.
These are obviously children’s fable and not real life, but the meaning still applies. The hero of the story has something bad happen to them, whether it’s due to a mistake, or something completely out of their control, and then this bad situation soon becomes a new, more positive one.
Does that make sense?
What to do Next
Of course, when challenges happen, you can’t just sit around and wait for something new to occur. You have to take action and be the ‘hero’ of your own story. The action you take can be different for everyone. Remember this though – you may not be able to control everything that happens to you in life but you can control how you respond to it.
Some may decide to take some time to gain awareness of the situation. Assessing what’s gone wrong, and perhaps not wanting to look for solutions until they can understand what needs to change.
Others may continue going down their previous path, but feel motivated enough to push harder, to not be held down by any setbacks.
And sometimes you may decide this is the time to change direction and try a new path.
It all depends on the situation and your take on it.
For me, whatever the right answer may seem, I believe that anytime life seems down, it’s likely that a new UP will soon begin. Some of the greatest speakers I know have begun their public speaking journeys because of some sort of negative experience, and it can often be their driving force.
A Moment to Reflect
When something unexpected happens, you don’t need to waste time with any ‘this is all my fault’ or ‘I wish none of this ever happened’ self-talk.
Instead, take some time to reflect on how you are interpreting the situation. Question your self-talk around absolutes. ‘This always happens to me’ is probably not true and it IS OK to feel sad, annoyed or worried. Just try not to stay there too long!
Look at how you could reframe what has happened into something positive. If I am ever stuck in a traffic jam caused by an accident, my first thought is gratitude that I wasn’t 10 minutes earlier and actually IN the accident.
If your marketing just bombed, see it as learning what didn’t work.
When you get ill, see it as an opportunity to listen to your body, slow down and read that book you have been meaning to read. Whatever the situation, focus on moving forward.
Great things can happen, you just have to let them in.
Remember, a seed has to sink before it grows. And particularly since it’s Easter – a time for new beginnings and forgiveness – now’s a better time than ever to have some awareness and remember the positives.
PS – If you liked this blog and want to read more blogs surrounding female empowerment, you can find last week’s here: ‘‘Orange’ – You Ready to Start?‘
“I’m on a global mission to help 10 million disheartened souls, who are at a crossroads, to STOP asking why me? And START saying why not me!”