Life Lessons in Difficult Times – What I’ve Learned
A long time ago, when going through a particularly challenging period in my life, I made some big changes to my way of thinking and living. These changes set me on a very direct path to who I am today. Three particular life lessons have stuck with me ever since.
#1 – This Too Shall Pass
The first of three significant life lessons was “This too shall pass.” I had never really given these words much thought before then. A relationship I was in had ended, and the break up shook me to my very core. It forced me to take a deep look at who I was and what I had compromised about myself to be with that person.
“This too shall pass” became my mantra. I was heart-broken and depressed and it was months of sleeplessness. All I desperately wished for was the passage of time. In my deepest despair, when nights seemed a hundred hours long, all I wanted was the morning sun so I could get up and keep moving through. I knew that one day from now, two months from now, six months from now, I would feel better. I knew, I KNEW, that all of that sadness would indeed pass, that I would not feel that pain forever. In the beginning it was just a very tiny bit of feeling better each day, but it was better.”This too shall pass” kept me going until, indeed, one day it had all passed.
#2 I Am Responsible For My Own Happiness
The second lesson was I learned was that I was 100% responsible for everything that happened in my life. I had chosen to be in that relationship and had chosen to stay as long as I did. That was no one’s responsibility but my own. It had nothing to do with the other person. I knew 2 months in that it wasn’t the relationship for me, but I stayed in it anyway. All kinds of excuses were created as to why it was ok. I willingly made that choice. At the end of it I had to accept the fact that my unhappiness was my own doing. I now know that my life path is mine and mine alone. If I am not content in any way, I have the power to change the circumstances.
#3 – Life Lessons Empower Us
And the third, and maybe most important of those life lessons, is that through despair amazing and powerful lessons are learned. As difficult as that time in my life was, I have no regrets and I am incredibly grateful that it all happened exactly the way it did. I am thankful for that person, I am thankful for my heartache. I am thankful that I was forced to look within and to start making choices that made me a happier person living a better life. Wonderful and motivational authors, whose wisdom I still hold on to with joy and gratitude, were my life line. The opening chapter of Iyanla Vanzant’s “In the Meantime” practically started with “Dear Siobhán,” and Wayne Dyer and Don Miguel Ruiz were heroes to my soul.
It took a long time to move beyond that chapter of my life, but it did pass. Since then, I have worked really hard not to blame anyone or any thing for any discontent in my world. I have heart-felt gratitude for that relationship and what the experience taught me. Those life lessons taught me so much and that made any of the pain worth it.