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It always amazes me how in times of adversity, our lives seem to take on a covering of darkness. We are quick to call it fate, being unlucky in life, or we are being punished by some outside force for not doing what we are told to do. We develop tunnel vision and list all the negative events in our lives to prove to ourselves that we are correct in our assumptions why a particular event occurs.

We rail against God, fate, or the unreasonable expectations of others. We criticize ourselves for the mistakes we make like trusting other people too much or relying on others instead of doing it ourselves. We tell ourselves we should be smarter, stronger, wiser, better equipped, and more self-reliant.

But the truth about adversity or negative events occurring may be as simple as reminding ourselves that life has always been full of positive and negative events. The sun rises and the sun sets, seasons come and go, and things live and things die. Good and evil exist in our world. We are given things and sometimes they are taken away whether we like it or not. Life happens and our sense of being in control fluctuates throughout our life span.

We can make our lives easier if we just accept that change is a part of living, and that evil exists but we can choose to be a force for good in our own lives, and the lives of those we come in contact with. We can learn better coping skills and teach ourselves to accept those things we can not change. We can also remind ourselves of our blessings and learn to enjoy them in the moments we are experiencing them. We can take them out and look at them again in times of adversity and remind ourselves that goodness and love still exist, even in the darkness.

In order to do this, we have to make a commitment to observe our thoughts and emotions. Our thoughts come and we can feel our emotions, but we don’t have to  allow them to overwhelm us. We can choose to become active participants in our own lives, or we can choose to focus on being victims in need of safety. It will take persistence, courage, and trust in ourselves to achieve this. In the end, we can also find peace.