People are facing a multitude of challenges today: COVID-19, unemployment, homeschooling, and a host of other problems. However, you don’t have to allow these obstacles to dictate your life, creating unhappiness and anxiety. (If you need some assistance in battling anxiety, here is a helpful read: “Stave off Anxiety.”) You can turn challenges into opportunities—it’s just a matter of perspective. Don’t let your situation define you; let your circumstances be a springboard for growth.
First, develop the habit of looking at problems from a different angle. For example, your recent job loss might facilitate the opening of your own business or a change to your career path. And working from home could allow you to spend additional time with your spouse or children. Note: a more positive outlook will not only help you but also prove beneficial to those in your life who depend on you.
Second, understand and embrace the fact you may have to work considerably harder than normal, at least for a while. Remember, there are no shortcuts or free rides in this world, so put in the hard work now; therefore, you’ll be able to reap the rewards later. What exactly does this mean? Well, you might have to work a part-time job for a bit, sell some unwanted items to assist with the bills, or tighten the preverbal belt some more. (Good article on cutting costs: “How to Tighten Your Belt in Tough Times.”)
In the words of Elon Musk, “No matter how hard you work, someone else is working harder.”
Lastly, be honest about the gravity of your current situation, but don’t overdramatize or awfulize to the point of undue stress, which is both unhelpful and unhealthy. Find the perfect balance between realism and Pollyannaism. In other words, look at how bad things are, sure, but not worse than they are. Too often, people invent catastrophes that do not exist; hence, individuals spend their life in a perpetual state of panic. Not good.
But what if your poor choices contributed to your current state? Then acknowledge your abysmal decisions of the past and make changes going forward. If you do not take responsibility for your situation, you will never progress in life. Part of being an adult is owning your mistakes and correcting them—without crying like a baby.
“When I was a child, I spake as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child: but when I became a man, I put away childish things.”(1 Corinthians 13KJV)
In closing, let me summarize it like this: look at your challenges from a more positive angle, work harder and be okay with that concept for the time being, and be realistic and honest with your circumstance—just don’t be pessimistic. And don’t let your situation define you, but instead, you determine you by the manner in which you face difficulties. Oh yeah, and don’t attempt to blame someone or something else for your situation.
As always, if you have any questions or comments, you can reach us via e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.