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Step 2 – Recognize and Accept What is Difficult

MP900439455When adversity and hardship hit hard, questions and doubts rush to the foreground.

Why? Why me? How could this happen? What did I do wrong?  What will I do? We will experience a lot of emotions such as shock, anger, fear, anxiety, and even panic.  As comprehension reveals the depth of the problems we face, we may have misgivings about how to successfully resolve them.

Adversity and hardship turn our world upside down and inside out. We find ourselves in unfamiliar territory, where our vulnerabilities are exposed and our capability questioned.

If we have never examined and accepted those parts of our personality that are weaker, less pleasant and difficult, hard times will amplify and exaggerate them.  Instead of resolve and determination, our focus will remain on defeat and failure or anger and blame.

While it is important to recognize and affirm our assets, qualities and strengths, it is equally as important to acknowledge what is not easy and problematic.   When we have acknowledged and affirmed both, our weaknesses become less of an issue and we can use our mind and energy to problem solve instead of questioning ourselves.

Being aware of our weaknesses provides a harmonious and emotional balance between what we can do and what we can’t. It stabilizes and grounds us and provides a balancing pole between two opposing forces. We are reminded we are not all powerful, all capable, or all-anything. We need others and we need God.

Pride often leads to arrogance.  Adversity will reveal this in unpleasant ways. Humility is a quantifying scale against pride and arrogance.  In the grand scheme of things there will be areas where we excel and areas where we do poorly. One does not outweigh the other.  When we recognize both, we are able to ask for help and take on the responsibility to find solutions.

Humility brings us back to what is important in life and what we believe in.  It is not just about me – but what I have been given to work with and a God who leads, guides, and directs. We don’t always have to be right; only be willing to learn.

Life can be a hard taskmaster.  Tough times can be either debilitating events or opportunities to become more than we were.  If we play the “blame game” or continue to beat ourselves up, we will spend an enormous amount of energy and time going nowhere. But, if we ask God for guidance, assurance, strength, and faith,  we will find we have the tools to handle the worst adversity.

What is difficult for you?  Perhaps you are afraid of making mistakes, appearing stupid, or incapable.  Perhaps you fear rejection and isolation. When we accept that we will make mistakes, will appear stupid at times and won’t always be capable, our fears can be turned into tools instead of huge obstacles.

We can’t learn unless we are willing to risk. When we have evaluated ourselves honestly and genuinely, we can establish a mindset and attitude that says, whatever happens, I will, with the help of God, be able to turn it into something good.

Marlene Anderson


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