It could be anything ranging from cancer, to a death in the family, to breaking up with your boyfriend. The event that shatters one’s reality differs from person to person, but what is similar is how it makes us feel in the process.
Yes, there are the 5 stages of grief (denial, anger, bargaining, depression and acceptance), but beyond acceptance lies the risk of giving up on the very thing you wanted most in life. Many people think that the “accept” part of the healing process means internalizing disempowering truths about life (Ex. all men are dogs, eat or be eaten, I don’t need anyone, etc.). Healing from grief, however, isn’t the same as numbing the pain of grief with anger or hate or by placing walls around the heart.
Truly healing means resuming the journey to achieve your initial goals in a healthier mental state than when you first made them.
So your marriage might be over, or you might never walk again, or you might lose everything you’ve dedicated your entire life to building … ok, what now? Don’t think for a second that this horrible hand you’ve been dealt is unique to you. Yes, YOU are special and unique but what you’re going through is not.
Undesirable events are experienced by wonderful people around the world every day. The only difference among every person on the planet whose husband has suddenly left them is how they process the event and the decisions they make to move on with their lives. Some people perpetually mope, never move and accept a state of victimization. While others use the same painful event to launch themselves into a life they’ve always wanted but never thought possible.
Failure is not a denial of your life goals. It’s the critical diversion you needed to grow into the next stage of your life so that you may achieve them. Cherish the path, for it is uniquely yours.
Every time something “bad” happens, imagine that instead of cursing the sky you took a deep breath and said to yourself, “wow, this pain I feel means this is a massive opportunity to grow and learn.” What would your life be like then and how would you perceive life’s challenges? While most others got angry, burned up precious emotional energy and gave up, you would be gaining momentum, inspiration, and wisdom as life unfolded.
If you do it right, you will look back one day and be thankful that you experienced that darkest period of your life because it made you a stronger, wiser person.
The pain of failure most people experience is tied to a very specific target goal that is the main source happiness and success. So instead of a goal of growing and one day owning a thriving business, they give themselves an all or nothing ultimatum of succeeding at Company X. Or instead of learning about love and finding a healthy relationship, they invest all of their emotional well-being into the person they are dating. When the company goes bankrupt or the relationship ends, that doesn’t mean you’re a failure. It simply means you had something to learn about yourself and life itself.
It’s only the end if you give up on what you truly want. SO DON’T. Instead, double down on achieving the life you know you deserve.
Convert all that negative mental noise into the energy needed to keep going. Gently open up your mental aperture and relax the rules of how you think life is supposed to be, so that you can learn what life is trying to teach you. If you do this while staying focused on the path leading to your goals, you will reach your life’s most treasured destination.