Positive thinking is good, but when really bad stuff happens: the death of a loved one, the loss of a job, a marriage broken, a friendship lost; how do we get through these difficult times and make things better?
One way is to ask yourself this question: “How can I use this?”
Sounds selfish at first, but the design of the question is to get you thinking about how you can improve the way you feel and change your focus. Remember how your focus determines your reality? Well, by changing your focus to how you can use a tradgedy to move forward with your life and affect yourself and others in a positive way, you can take the pain of the loss and use it to grow and help others who have gone through similar circumstances.
This happened to me when I went through a really nasty breakup years ago. The pain I felt took over a year to get through. But when I decided to take my life back, and start thinking about how I could use this, I realized that so many of my clients went through similar situations or worse! SoI was able to use the tradgedy to empathize with others who went through similar tradgedies and I was able to help them through it.
I look back on that situation now and all the pain I went through, and I honestly don’t regret the experience at all. It may be that once you’re through your difficult experience, and use it to empower yourself, you may end up feeling the same way: that it was hard, and difficult, but through that bad experience…
…I grew as a person. I encourage you to think about how you can grow from your bad experiences as well. From personal experience, I don’t think you’ll regret it. 🙂
Jim Valeri, LMHC