Life’s hard, that’s just the way it is… or so they taught us.


What if life wasn’t hard? What if there was another way? What if life’s challenges were infact the very gifts that we’ve been waiting for on our path to awareness?We learn over and over that the only thing we have any control over in this life is our reaction, and yet still we struggle to take control and make the decisions that serve us.One of the key lessons we pass on as Mindfulness coaches is that you are not at the mercy of your external, environmental factors, you are the architect of your life and and you get to decide whether life’s stumbling blocks will stop you or whether you’re going to find a way round, over or even under. Deciding to take charge and turn your obstacles into learning opportunities.


Life doesn’t have to be hard, next time you find yourself with yet another seemingly insurmountable obstacle in your path try these five steps:


1. Assess

Is it really that bad? My son had ‘the worst day ever’ when he dropped his yoghurt and it spilt onto the floor. Yes, he is given to hyperbole but I know that I am guilty of overreacting from time to time (or almost always!). Before declaring it your worst day ever stop and check if it really warrants that title at all. Our words carry power, choosing to use hyperbole and over reacting to situations will make it seem worse. Next time see if you can temper your response with neutral language.


2. Observe

If you’ve assessed your situation and it really is quite dire, pause and observe. I know from personal experience that anything can seem impossible when I am in the midst of the drama. More times than I care to remember a friend has stepped into my drama and seen a very clear, very simple solution that was invisible to me because I was too caught up in the drama. Imagine you are the friend/family member whose judgement you most trust and see what they would see. Becoming the observer is such a powerful tool. Ask yourself how would an outsider view this situation and act from there.


3. Formulate a plan

This is the key to avoid being dragged into the drama! I spilt my yoghurt: I need to get a mop, clean the floor, serve myself more yoghurt. Problem solved. Of course not all problems are as easily solved as spilt yoghurt but there is always a way through. A phonecall to make, something to be mended, sometimes starting over and horror of horrors, sometimes the answer is to let it go.


4. Forgive

Forgive the situation, forgive yourself, forgive them. Once you have found a way through your obstacle forgive,forgive, forgive. Forgiveness is a powerful energy that heals you and lightens any situation.


5. Find the gift

It’s always there, even when its hard to find. How did this challenge make you stronger/kinder/more compassionate/empathetic? When we look hard enough the gift of opportunity for growth is always there.