Yesterday I began discussing strategies to live above trying and difficult circumstances. Although difficulties and turmoil cannot always be prevented, I still can control my mood, attitude, and disposition. Rising above circumstances is a skill that can be developed. Here are three more tactics to help.
3. My story isn’t over; the best chapter is yet to be written.
My positive nature allows me to take what happened and accept it as it is. I can do this knowing that tomorrow is another day, I’ll have more opportunities, and even through difficulty I am making progress. Focusing on my character, as mentioned above, keeps me from judging my life and happiness by circumstances only. I know that the future is bright and that even in the darkest night I am confident that morning is coming. I refuse to let dreary days or stormy nights dampen my mood. Instead, because my mood, attitude, and disposition are linked to my character, they can stay steady even when circumstances rise and fall.
4. I choose to celebrate my successes and learn from my mistakes.
Perhaps you think that because I’m positive, I never make mistakes. That is, of course, not true. The point here is that I choose to focus on what goes right, not what goes wrong. I focus on my abilities and not on my limitations. Also, as I stated earlier, my goal is not perfect performance, my goal is positive character and an optimistic attitude. Every mistake is an opportunity to learn and grow. This is not to say that I enjoy this process; but I have learned to appreciate growth in character and attitude. I have learned to enjoy life as it comes.
5. My strength is best demonstrated when I lift others up.
This helps me live above my circumstances because I am not focused only on myself. I desire to assist someone else in overcoming their struggles rather than solely concentrating on my own. If you compete against someone, especially if you are trying to tarnish them in some way, it only serves to demonstrate weakness, inferiority, and inadequacy. Instead, I can encourage, support, and build others up whether traffic is slow, the economy is down, or there is another storm on the horizon.
Being Peaceful Despite the Storm
Living above my circumstances allows me to live in peace, and not be upset by every wave of negativity that spills upon my shoes. For those of you who work or live with substance use disorders, this can be an essential trait, a skill to be honed. When things don’t go right for me, I will be okay because I am the one who chooses how I will respond. Even during the darkest night, I’m going to be standing strong and confidently waiting for the sunrise I know is coming.
Recovery is a Journey. Enjoy the Ride!