A new client called yesterday hysterically crying. Her son was having problems and she didn’t know what to do.
She said her constant worry has turned into anxiety and it has affected her concentration, energy, mood and even her eyesight.
Being a mom, I understand. When my kids have problems it’s much worse than my own. It is painful to watch our children suffer.
Problems are a part of life. We will never reach a point where we have none. One goes away and another takes its place. Even solutions can create their own set of problems.
The problem is not that we have problems. The problem is thinking that having problems is a problem.
I love to help people shift their perspective. When we see something differently, it changes how we feel, how we act and many times it changes the entire situation.
We create our own perspectives and meanings to make sense of the world. Sometimes those perspectives can be disempowering and even create more problems in our lives.
I like to call problems “challenges”. The doom and gloom is replaced with empowerment.
A problem is seen as unwelcome or harmful and needs to be dealt with and overcome.
A challenge says, “Bring you’re A game”. It won’t be easy but you will test your skills and push yourself, like running a 5k or solving a difficult crossword puzzle.
What if our challenges are our greatest assets?
Nothing happens by chance. We are constantly getting signs and signals to direct us on our path. Our challenges are like road signs.
When you have a challenge, ask yourself, “What is this trying to tell me? What is saying about my choices, lifestyle, beliefs and actions? What do I need to learn from this challenge?”
Feeling bad or worried when challenges come your way is a waste of valuable time. You could spend that time focusing on the solution, strengthening your faith and finding the hidden lessons.
You are ultimately in control of your own life. You get to choose your actions and reactions. Because you are the master of your challenges, you can make every situation serve you.
Not everything is meant to be fixed.
We are programmed to fix things. We want to make it better and change the way we feel or help those we love.
We sometimes forget that we all have our lessons to learn. Our kids, spouses, parents… everyone has their own roadsigns. Sometimes we have to drive 1000 miles to get to the place where we can have lasting change. Everyone’s process is different.
Remember years ago when toys were hidden in cereal boxes? I made my mom buy 10 boxes of cereal so I could find all the surprises. Opportunities are the toys and the box of cereal is the challenge. There is an opportunity hidden in every challenge you have.
I told my client that her constant worry about her son was sending him a message that she did not believe in him and his ability to solve his own problems.
Shifting from worry to faith would help him believe in himself and give him the strength he needed to get through this. She can still help him, but with the intent of empowering him. Then she can guide him to access his own lessons from his experiences and use them to make his life better.
The moment you stop accepting challenges is the moment you stop moving forward.
And remember…. The greater the challenge, the greater the opportunity!