Will I use this situation as an opportunity for personal growth or will I beat myself up about it?
One of the prerequisites to personal growth is a challenge of some kind. It is certainly possible, and even beneficial to create these challenges for ourselves. But we all know that life itself will consistently and at the worst possible times offer us circumstances beyond our control – of which may need our immediate attention, likely pulling us away from what we thought was so important. Priorities sure become clear in certain unexpected situations.
Negative experiences are a part of life. Question is, do you see it as a problem or a challenge? Do you ask yourself, “What can I learn from this?” or do you cry, “Why me?”
Some say that everything happens for a reason, and that we each need specific experiences in order to evolve. If we don’t learn from an experience it frequently repeats itself until, if ever, we do learn. And once we truly learn from it, we know how to change or avoid it again in the future. Most things don’t happen to us, they happen from us. We can either use life for us or against us.
There is a saying, “Life is a teacher to the wise man and an enemy to the fool.” By seeing the lesson in each circumstance we can transcend our suffering.
You know the line: when life gives you lemons, make lemonade!
Originally published June, 2004 under the title “Good Question: Personal Growth”