THE BLOG

3 Lessons to Eliminate Hardships

12/16/2013 08:19 am ET | Updated Feb 15, 2014

The joys of life are sometimes anything but joyful. There are moments that enrapture us with delight: falling in love, the birth of new life, incredible accomplishments, and so on. Then there are scenarios that shake our very foundation: death and tragedy and sudden loss. True joy is achieved through stability. But even the most stable grounds are struck with unexpected earthquakes.

Recite these 10 truths to steady your emotions and uplift your spirits during trying times:

My pain is momentary. It will not span into my future.
This situation is teaching me a necessary lesson.
Through this hard time, I am learning and evolving.
I have the power to turn this setback into a victory.
My path is clear. I know exactly what I must do.
I am sustained by people who support me through anything.
My suffering is heard. I will be rewarded with pure joy.
I will resurface after this storm, stronger and better.
Determination and ambition surge through me.
An unexpected blessing awaits me.

The emotional toll of adversity is best mediated by our mindset -- Is the glass half empty of half full? Our reaction to a difficult situation is the deciding factor in becoming stuck or surpassing our struggle. And our response is, fortunately, completely up to us to create. Act on my three lessons for eliminating hardships to regain a sense of inner security and overcome your challenges:

See beyond the moment.
Seeing beyond a moment in time takes great wisdom. After all, we live in the present and are most affected by the contents of now. But future projection is our saving grace during misfortune. You may hurt today, but understand that this is only temporary. Everything resolves itself in time: sometimes when you least expect it and oftentimes better than you expected. Ask yourself, "What is the greater purpose of this painful moment? What am I meant to learn?" See every obstacle as an opportunity for personal growth. Close your eyes and take a deep breath. Allow reality to set in and understand not only the scope of what is happening but also the reasons behind it. Then envision the best possible outcome to your dilemma. Don't be afraid to imagine a solution to your every problem. This is your starting point to reaching that solution. When we see past the worries of the moment, we regain hope -- hope that, yes, this too will pass and lead to a brand new chapter of life.

Do your best to resolve it.
Be it in your hands or out of grasp, putting effort to eliminate a hardship means doing everything in your power to make things right. And whether this does or does not resolve the issue, at least you know you truly tried your best. Some occurrences are simply beyond our control, and people are sometimes more complicated than we can comprehend. But being proactive helps ease the burden by offering a sense of closure and clearing your conscience of lingering guilt. Instead of immediately giving up, try wholeheartedly to resolve every unpleasant situation that arises. If you notice that your efforts are met with constant opposition, take a step back and hand your hardship over to the universe. You will thank yourself for having done what you can.

Replace with positive action.
Many people choose to adopt a new pet when their old pet passes away. This is their way of replacing a loss with a gain. We are faced with two choices whenever trouble surfaces: we can dwell on the moment and perpetuate the pain it causes or we can choose to act against it. Acting against adversity means cultivating positivity in whatever way you can. If you've lost your job, seek not one but two. If you've recently separated from your significant other, take time to rediscover your personal needs and improve your natural abilities. If you're unhappy with a certain aspect of your self, change to become exactly who you dream to be. Most important is not allowing yourself to fall victim to your circumstances; you have the ability to counteract negativity with positivity. Choose, instead, to outsmart your affliction by productively working against it. That we hold the power to influence our circumstances is a very reassuring thought.

Hardships can catch us off guard and cause us grief. But we can learn to work with situations that arise by seeing beyond the moment, seeking a resolution, and replacing negative events with positive action. Practice my three lessons to deal with hardships and turn your trials into personal triumphs.

To your stability,
Dr. Carmen Harra

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