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How To Grow Through Hard Times


You may be facing one of the toughest times of your life at the moment, but what is to follow could be the greatest gift you ever receive, even if it doesn’t seem like it right now.

It’s easy to let life drift by without really considering if how we are living is right for us. Then something happens out of the blue, which causes us great despair and we have no choice but to evaluate our lives. As though through the eyes of someone else, we are given rare insight and everything becomes clearer; allowing us to see things for what they are.

It is not until we experience extreme pain, whether physical, mental, the pain of a loss, or any other type of suffering, that we are offered moments of enlightenment like this.

And along with self-realisation, we are also provided with a new-found inner strength that we otherwise wouldn’t have known. Instead of ignoring what needs to change, it becomes our focus.

Precious Moments To Follow

In life, we experience a series of events, positive and negative, which are intended to give us a nudge to lead us onto our destined path. Although getting onto that path can be painful, we must accept it as part of our journey and roll with it.

As Lao Tzu once put it, “new beginnings are often disguised as painful endings” – out of suffering comes the most precious opportunity to evaluate our lives and find out how we can shift things around so that the way we are living matches what we really want.

Use it While You’ve Got It

Let’s be brutally honest, so many of us accept an average or below-average life; we accept average jobs, opportunities, lifestyles and, worst of all, we accept an average mindset. It is not until something huge happens and shakes our world that we stop to acknowledge that an average life is a choice.

Coming to the realisation that things need to change is one thing, but putting it into action is another; if you don’t act fast, your habits will slip back into old ways, and before you know it nothing has changed and once again you are back to living an average life until the next tragedy strikes.

The Mind/Soul Dilemma 

Making quick life decisions isn’t always easy, especially when there’s a mind/soul dilemma.

The mind uses logic and excuses to deter us from taking positive steps. It feeds the mind doubt, like: “what if it doesn’t work?”, “it’s safer this way”. But relying on the mind for decision-making is very risky – we risk wasting our lives!

The soul, however, which is the true essence of who we are – the most stripped-back, raw, authentic version of ourselves, knows what we want and how we can get it. When something feels good in our gut, that’s because it is. Listening to the soul and the messages it speaks, allows us to be guided by a higher force, and always in the right direction.

We are often at battle between mind and soul, and unfortunately the mind usually wins because it appears to make the most sense. Logic can be useful in some circumstances, but not when it comes to our destiny; logic steers us away from our destined path, whereas irrational ideas and quick decisions will lead us right onto it.

The trick is to have faith and worry later!

The Signs Are There

The Universe is also constantly trying to divert us onto the path meant for us; we receive signs in the form of unlikely happenings, hunches and coincidences. The more we notice the signs, the more they show up. Once we’re tuned in, we’re turned on, meaning we’re “awake”.

When we allow ourselves to be guided by the signs, and act upon them with urgency, we are led closer to our destiny. It requires letting go and giving up trying to control the next steps; allowing life to unravel for us, while knowing that, at a much higher level, everything is being taken care of.

Make the decision to get back onto your destined path, and use any pain and suffering to propel you further towards where you are meant to be. Don’t use it as your excuse to stay stuck.

Stephanie Dunleavy
Co-founder of Soul Analyse

Stephanie is a professional writer, blogger and the co-founder of Soul Analyse.

While she always tries to live in the moment, she feels it's equally important to look back at past experiences with open eyes to connect the missing dots and work out what we can learn for the future. She uses writing as a way to share her story with others in the hope that her past experiences can help someone else moving forward. She's also keen to gain knowledge from others' experiences and believes we can learn a great deal from one another!

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