But It’s Not the Way I Imagined It!

Letting go of our expectations is hard. Detaching ourselves from mental and emotional fantasies is rough. Coming to terms with the reality that what you were so sure would be will not be is more than a notion.  Working to understand that what we hoped for may not be what’s best for us presents us with unbelievable adjustments. However, our career paths, relationship statuses, financial outlook and physical states are very seldom what we planned.

How do you adjust to and accept reality without having a defeated or pessimistic attitude? I think the secret is embracing the now while looking forward to the future. Understanding that although today influences tomorrow, it doesn’t necessarily dictate it. There are so many possibilities and endless chances for beautiful experiences and discovery right where we are. Another important factor in adjusting to an unfavorable reality is the grief process. Allowing ourselves time to mourn or feel sad about our circumstances is natural and healthy. The key is to not overdo it but limit yourself to a time frame that does not lead to despair and depression.

Once we embrace where we are (and the fact that we will not always be there) and have given ourselves time to grieve, we must move forward. Moving forward is a process and, as you know, it’s not like talking about it – it takes effort. We have to look for ways to allow the place and season we’re in to work for us. Every experience provides experience. Everything we face adds to our repertoire of knowledge and understanding. Life isn’t just something that happens to us but it’s a journey – one that strengthens, teaches, changes, humbles, shapes and molds us into better people. It’s this type of thinking that will empower you and give you the strength and insight to move forward. Stepping away from the victim mentality of rehearsing what has happened to you and instead choosing to control the circumstances is crucial to the process of moving forward.

We are human and it’s important that we acknowledge and accept our emotions. At the same time, it’s important that we don’t solely on them. Life is so much more then an emotional state. There is no room for pessimistic and defeated thinking. We cannot allow ourselves to continue in a state of being the victim of circumstance. Overcoming obstacles and dealing with the unexpected in positive, intentional ways is what will propel us forward.

Life is rough but life is beautiful. Most importantly, life is mostly what we make of it. There is so much we have no control over but there is more we do control. Our thinking process and the way we view ourselves and our circumstances will either help us reach our goals or forever keep a stagnant. We have to make the decision. It’s up to us to choose the type of life we live. Either we lay down and die or we’ll fight for more and better.

I’m no stranger to disappointment. I understand the frustrations that life brings. However, I have learned through overcoming depression, abuse and suicidal thoughts, through God’s love and grace, that life is worth fighting for. God wants us to live happy, productive lives. No circumstance and no one should be more important than your wellness and well-being. Your happiness, peace of mind and sense of identity must be your priority. I’m reminded of a scripture that states this concept so beautifully.

“The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.” John 10:10

As you continue your journey, may you always know that you are not alone. When fear, frustration and sadness visit you, may you acknowledge them and then boldly rise above. May you know that you are not a victim but a warrior. May your challenges make you better. May you reach out to others and be a beacon of hope. May you be a survivor who learns to thrive. May God bless and keep you.