Have you ever experienced setbacks, encountered challenges, or failed miserably? Struggled, made a poor choice, or taken a wrong turn? Said words you regret, missed an opportunity, wasted time?
Do I even need to ask?
If you want to lead yourself and others you need to keep life’s troubles in perspective.
Tonight I got a phone call from a friend I’ve known for a long time.
She shared a struggle, one I could identify with immediately. It’s a familiar story to me, one I’ve lived — recently, even.
While she talked, I listened, and let it sink in, a realization: this is the moment when that bad thing turns good.
Why? Because without that experience, I may not be able to listen without judging (something my friend needed.) I certainly wouldn’t empathize so closely.
When we share the wisdom we’ve gained through hardships, mistakes, or shortcomings with others, we redeem what’s ugly, make wrong things right. We infuse the dark things in our lives with a deeper purpose and meaning.
All those bad things — even the worst things — complete the picture of who we are. If we try to hide or ignore our imperfections and past mistakes, we may miss out on the opportunity to allow those things to be used for good in someone else’s life.
So listen for it, look for it. When it happens, let it sink in, the realization: this is the moment when that bad thing turns good.
This was originally posted at Mountain State University LeaderTalk and is re-posted with permission.
I am the founder/CEO of the Weaving Influence team, the author of Reach: Creating the Biggest Possible Audience for Your Message, Book, or Cause, and the host of the Book Marketing Action Podcast. I’m a wife and mom of three kids, and I enjoy running, reading, writing, coffee, and dark chocolate.
The three prongs of Simple Encouragement are speaking life to potential, healing to pain, and light to darkness… and your article portrays “light to darkness” in a wonderful way. When we have experienced comfort and acceptance in our difficult and darker times, we bring a spirit of peace and acceptance as others are going through theirs. Our humble grace breaks their shame-filled bondage and of course, this creates the emotional and spiritual environment where everyone gains perspective and grows. For us there is deeper meaning and for the other, there is freedom to begin the journey of healing. I love the implications of your lesson to all relationships where we lead. Thank you Becky… Great article!
You would not believe how closely I relate to your post, and most recently. I call these the silver linings, and you are right – without our own personal behaviors of poor judgment and choices, or struggles of our own can we help others. There is so much truth that with age comes wisdom, if we’re open to it. It’s a really nice trade-off!
I’m glad this post resonated with you. I like the idea of the silver lining, also. Although it is certainly difficult to see that silver lining during the moment, I appreciate the opportunity to reflect on life’s experiences to distill important lessons.
Inspiring post! This kind of reminds me of another inspiring video post ‘zones of uncertainty’ by Vineet Nayar. You might want to see this. https://www.vineetnayar.com/zones-of-uncertainty/