Struggle today, Strength tomorrow – #FridayReflections

“Keep Going. Your hardest times often lead to the greatest moments of your life. Keep going. Tough situations build strong people in the end.” -Roy T. Bennett.

hard times

When the going gets tough, I often ask myself, “Why is this happening to me?”. At times, I know I have the answers, mostly I don’t. But, through all the knocks and the grinds, the heartaches and the tears, I’ve almost always come out stronger with the knowledge that fighting through the bad days has earned me the good days of life.

How?

I’m confessing I’m not the kind who gives up easily. Through all the difficult times, no matter how challenging, I’ve stuck at it, trying to make my way around those difficult situations, whether working through my broken relationships, working through the rough patches of my marriage, braving ill health and physical problems, or even charting a path when I’ve reached a dead-end.

It has never been as easy as it sounds now, let me tell you. There was a time when it felt things would never ever change, the roller-coaster ride of emotions and the unexpected turn of consequences, was a lot to bear, as I grappled through these situations suffering emotional breakdowns ever so often. I find it difficult to talk about those days but I’m beginning to open up slowly. There was a time when the stress and the emotional upheaval I’ve suffered were enough to make me physically sick. As a result, I saw myself sliding down into a tunnel of depression from which recovery became a herculean task. We’re talking of years of trauma and stress here. What came to my rescue was my inner reserves of positivity- something I believe, not only kept me going through it all, but also pulled me out of the crises, as they came in quick succession. A sense of unease is still hidden somewhere within me even today, because let’s face it, you never know what life brings us tomorrow. I have my apprehensions and the fear of uncertainty comes knocking every now and then.

When I look back at those days, I can say, that without all those difficult people and the trying times in my life, I wouldn’t be where I am today. I am grateful that I’ve made peace with my battles now, I feel blessed because those testing times have taught me to rise and come out stronger and braver as a fighter.

None of us wish to struggle. Who doesn’t want to project his/her life as a perfect picture of happiness and success? I don’t. I find it all a sham. Having seen it all, I am happy being myself as I am, with all my flaws and imperfections, because that is what makes me ‘me’. Having neither the patience nor the inclination to fit myself into any bracket or compete with others, I firmly believe our battles and our victories are all unique to our situations. No two lives or for that matter, no two situations could be the same. Where is the question of comparison, then?

The biggest plus from being in this situation is when you’ve gone through tough times, you can say with conviction that these often lead to the greatest moments in our lives.

And why not? There are some essential life-lessons that we are only taught through difficult times. Like testing who our real friends are. Sometimes it’s comforting to know what/who actually does stick, after the world goes awry. This has definitely helped me to streamline my friendships in life. I know who is with me. To hell with those who no longer matter. Ask me. I’ve been there.

Then, of course, hard times are very good in testing our grit. You never know how strong you are until you’re dipped head to toe in hot water. Ask me. I’ve been there too! Tough times build character, yes, but that’s also when we discover our inner reserves of patience and strength, like never before. When you survive something, it gives a positive boost to your efforts. You suddenly find something to cling onto, in the midst of uncertainty. I did, trust me.

I guess more than anything, what I’ve personally taken away from such hard times is the wisdom to shift the focus away from the petty things since our concern now lies with those significant issues in our life, that really make or mar us. I’ve learnt to choose my battles. Trust me when I say that not all battles are worth losing your peace of mind.

After every difficult chapter in life, I keep coming back with a deep sense of gratitude for this life. Difficult times alter us and change the way we view everything around our lives. With the knowledge gained about what really matters, we have a greater appreciation for all the blessings that come our way. I’ve learnt to enjoy every moment as it comes now. Mindfulness – that art of living in the moment, has been the biggest blessing that hard times have taught me.

When something bad happens, you have three choices. You can either let it define you, let it destroy you, or let it strengthen you.

What has been your learning from the tough times you’ve faced in the past? What advice will you will give to someone who is struggling to cope with such moments in their lives?

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(Linking with Corinne of everydaygyaan.com and Sanchie of livingmyimperfectlife.com for #FridayReflections)

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7 thoughts

  1. You spoke my heart , it was as if I wrote my story here. When life becomes so complicated I used to wonder why ?? But over a period of time I learned the lessons from it.

    1. Glad you thought so, Shilpa. When times get tough we often ponder to listen to our hearts and the answers may come late but they do come and tell us that we’ve not just weathered a storm but have also learnt something very important from it.

  2. I will not say this one was an easy read for me because in each and every line of this post I kept finding a piece of me – the broken one, the one with roughly glued pieces, eventually the stronger one. At this point I do not remember the life altering incidences which brewed negativity but I do remember to feel gratitude for those tough times and people because without them I would not have been the strong person that I am today. I do remember the lessons – spiritual as well as worldly, to be audacious and authentic enough to speak straight and follow my mind and heart. Many a times, I have felt that the difference in years notwithstanding, we, both of us, come from the same nucleus. And similarly I feel the same about a few other bloggers.

    1. Thank you for sharing your thoughts on this one, Anamika. Yes, life altering experiences have a way of nudging us every now and then. We’ve discussed this when we met how our lives and the events therein seem to run parallel at times between us even though we’re separated by time, distance and place, not forgetting the years. I too have found solace in the fact that I have a few people who seem to echo my thoughts and experiences and yes, perhaps you are right, we do come from the same nucleus which is why we can relate to so many things in a similar way. I’m glad to see that in your own way, you too have come a long way from those days of trials and tribulations and nothing feels better than knowing that the worst is behind us.

  3. I’ve had struggles in the past, but the coming struggle is something I never expected. A new administration in my country, turmoil, threats against people of my religion, and supports for my disabled brother in law in danger of disappearing. We are girding for a fight – and, in a strange way, it is giving me moments of happiness. Perhaps some part of us needs to struggle, because the struggle gives us purpose in life.

    1. Oh yes, absolutely. I get you. Apprehensions are there everywhere…we can feel it sitting here so many miles away from your country and can only imagine what it must be like for the citizens who are facing unrest and uncertainty because suddenly nobody knows what coming ahead. I can only agree that the struggle does give us a purpose as you know you’re fighting for something that you desperately need. Makes a lot of sense to me to hear this from you.

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