There are a lot of challenges in life. There are frequently hard times in our personal affairs or in our world around us. The strategies that most of us rely on to contend with such hard times tend to be self-defeating. When we face an uncertain future we often tend to feeling anxious, worrying, complaining, or being negative about events that may never occur.
Holding on to these feelings can have a devistating impact on our health. Studies have shown that a majority of illness is stress related.
Some people rise to meet uncertain times with hope and resilience. We need to develop such attitudes if we want to be successful in the face of life’s ups and downs. Learning to have hope in hard times and having hope reduces stress and can improve overall health.
What does having hope mean? Think of how you handle difficult situations. Do you offer a cliché like, “I hope everything will work out”? Unfortunately, this is just a non-productive way of dealing with difficult situation. True hope comes from a source much deeper, your inner being. At your core, there are vital qualities that help to determine how much hope you yourself feel, as well as what you can offer to others. Hope is an essential component in facing any type hard time, from layoffs, to promotions, to moving, and to the current state of the world.
Hope’s Primary Qualities
- Strength – You draw from inner strength to tap into your personal powers.
- Resilience – You bounce back when faced with setbacks and obstacles.
- Optimism – You stay positive despite the challenges ahead of you.
The above qualities are the opposite of pessimism, complaining, and worry. Rather than be self-defeatist, you can be strong, resilient, and optimistic. When you improve the way you look at the situation the situation has to improve.
Hope is essential for handling hard times but it can also serve as your core value on a daily basis. Uncertainty can arrive at any time, whether it appears in a personal issue, a business issue, a national event, or a global event. The situation doesn’t even necessarily need to be negative. It could be the uncertainty and excitement of starting your own business.
Now, let’s examine how the above qualities contribute to a positive outlook and will reduce your stress levels.
Most of us do not realize how much inner strength and power we have. Often, we are all too willing to give away our power, without even realizing it. What could be a more hopeless situation than being without power? This can happen in both business and personal relationships. You can find yourself going along with something you disagree with simply because you don’t realize you have the strength or power to speak up.
Finding your power means that you can stand up for yourself, that you can overcome resistance, that you can turn a catastrophe into an opportunity. True strength is in the core of your being. It’s a quiet calm that can’t be disturbed by events or the turmoil of emotions. It is in all of us and can be found by quiet contemplation.
Inner strength establishes self-power that will anchor, uplift, and encourage you.
Resilience is the ability to face hard times and bounce back. We often people celebrated in the media for reaching 100. They are always happy to share the secret to their long life. They all have different secrets, from a cigarette and a glass of whiskey every day, to 3 glasses of red wine a week.
The truth is that they didn’t win the gene pool lottery, nor were they immune to the woes of life. They were resilient. They faced hard times and bounced back, shook defeat off at every turn. Being resilient is the true secret to avoiding victimhood.
Some events in life are hard and it is natural for us to feel sad or grieve. Resilience isn’t simply about positive thinking. It’s healthy at times to deal with sadness; when we lose a loved one, grief is natural. It is unhealthy to be stuck in the grief or sadness.
Resilience and overcoming adversity comes from a strong sense of self.
Society has taught us that life is difficult, that struggling is the norm. Society wants us to believe that the safest place for us is behind a wall. In this environment, optimism seems foolish and unrealistic. Yet, when we meet people who are truly optimistic, we are jealous of their cheerfulness. Attitudes of pessimism, skepticism, and cynicism come from fear and distrust. Life can take care of itself, that’s the attitude of optimism.
Finding hope in hard times is can be done than. We all have the tools within us, and it is important to find them. Stress has been found to be the cause of many health issues. Click this link to check out my book on Stress Management.
Please leave a comment and share how you find the tools to deal with hard times in your life.
Dr. Christine Rose