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What to Ask Yourself When Things Are Going Wrong

What if what’s going wrong is subject to interpretation?  It is possible that there are gifts in everything that happens, even painful and unpleasant experiences?

If, just for a minute, we can take our focus off of our suffering, we make space to discover what we are learning and gaining. One way to do that is to get in the habit of looking at both sides of a situation rather than making the negative aspects the only truth.

To explore this idea, think of the situation in your life that keeps you up at night and ask yourself one or more of these questions:

  • What is my “story” about this and could there be another way to view it?
  • What is the “everything is alright” version of the story?
  • What inner and outer skills and abilities am I stretching and strengthening through this experience?
  • In what ways can I learn to be more compassionate with myself and others right now?
  • Imagine that your life is a classroom and this situation is one of your lessons. Ask, what is my life trying to teach me with this experience?
  • What are three things I’m gaining from this?

Working with yourself this way acknowledges that, although it can be challenging when you’re navigating a painful or worrisome situation, you get to choose your interpretation of events and what you take away from it.

Deb Purdy, is a transformation coach, speaker, workshop leader and author of
Something Gained: 7 Shifts to Be Stronger, Smarter and Happier After Divorce.

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