Defining Moments

Are you an optimist who views life through rosy colored glasses, always looking for the up-side of a situation? Are you a pessimist who is discouraged by the little things and casts a gray cloud on a situation? Or do you fit somewhere in the middle? Chances are, throughout your life, you’ve encountered people who fit into each of these categories. Sometimes, even the greatest optimists among us have a hard time finding the silver lining. The important thing to remember is to trust that you are right where you are meant to be.

In life, the road you’re traveling on may seem to be never ending. You may hit bump after bump with no relief in sight. “Bad” things continually happen, and yet you cannot figure out why. Although it may be hard to see when you are in the middle of turmoil, at every single point in your life, you are right where you are meant to be. Let’s test out this theory a bit.

Look back on your life, starting with your childhood. Write down every major memory you can recall, whether positive or negative. Continue recording events that you experienced in adolescence and through your adulthood. Once you have a comprehensive list, reflect on each scenario, one-by-one. How did each of these things shape you? Did it lighten a situation, creating humor and laughter? Did it make you stronger and more resilient? Or did it prepare you for the next hurdle you were about to hop over, making what would have been a difficult situation just a bit easier? Attach one word to each experience.

Reflect on those words. They become the defining moments of your life. Would you be where are you today without those experiences? How might your life have changed if you had taken one or two of those positive experiences away? How about the negative ones?

We all go through situations in life that we wish we could have avoided. But as we travel through them, we learn and we grow. We become stronger, braver, more confident. The hurdles, failures and successes that we work through help shape us. Can you see the good in all of it?