When life is “falling apart,” it could actually be falling together… for the very first time. Which is why it feels so darn uncomfortable. Consider that what’s in front of you may be serving you in valuable ways you don’t even understand right now.
“Today, on my 47th birthday, I re-read the suicide letter I wrote on my 27th birthday about two minutes before my girlfriend showed up at my apartment and told me, ‘I’m pregnant.’ She was honestly the only reason I didn’t follow through with it. Suddenly I felt I had something to live for. Today she’s my wife, and we’ve been happily married for 19 years. And my daughter, who is now a 21-year-old college student, has two younger brothers. I re-read my suicide letter every year on my birthday as a reminder to be thankful – I am thankful I got a second chance at life.”
That’s the opening paragraph of an email I received last night from a reader named Kevin. His words remind me that sometimes you have to die a little on the inside first in order to be reborn and rise again as a stronger, smarter version of yourself.
People and circumstances will occasionally break you down. But if you keep your mind focused, your heart open to love, and continue to put one foot in front of the other, you can recover the pieces, rebuild, and come back much stronger and happier than you ever would have been otherwise.
Angel and I have dealt with our fair share of adversity over the years too – losing loved ones to illness, financial and business turmoil, etc. – and we’ve written a lot about it. But today, in light of Kevin’s email and a dozen other emails I’ve received this past week from readers who are struggling with hard times, I want to revisit and discuss seven key actions Angel and I take to find strength when everything seems to be going wrong.
1. Fully accept the reality of what is.
You cannot find peace by avoiding life. Life spins with unexpected changes every hour; so instead of avoiding it, take every change and experience as a challenge for growth. Either it will give you what you want or it will teach you what the next step is.
Finding peace and happiness in life does not mean to be in a place where there is no noise, no challenges, and no hard work. It means to be in the midst of those [Read more…]