1. Look for the good.
Look in the simple details. It may be tough, but start small and get creative. I promise there is goodness to be found. If you don’t see it, ask someone else and trust his or her elements of good until you find your own.
Once you see goodness, grasp it and place it at the front of your thoughts. Make a list, write it in a journal, post it on the wall, or repeat it as a mantra. Choose to focus on what you have and the goodness that surrounds you. Cement it in your mind and heart.
I remember one day writing, “The kids are screaming and at each other. They’re not hitting.” With four young kids close together, that may not have made the list the next day! Another particularly difficult day, the list read, “Someone stopped to help load the groceries into the car.” Some days are easier than others.
2. Express gratitude for something.
Express gratitude verbally, through the written word, or an expressive piece of art. (In my world that means doodling!) Whatever the medium, capture your thoughts of gratitude in a tangible way. Later, use this space as an anchor and reminder for when frustration increases and hope begins to fade.
I remember standing in the hospital room after my sister passed away feeling gratitude for the nurses who cared for her. I was so relieved that we didn’t have to go through that experience alone. Even in the darkest moments, find something…find anything and express gratitude for it.
3. Identify what you need and ask for help.
Most mountains we face in life are not meant to climb alone. Find someone. It may be a family member, a friend, a coach or counselor, or even the cashier at the grocery store who offers a helping hand or shares an insight. Be open to new offers of friendship that come your way. Bottom line –- we all have needs and you don’t have to do this alone.
Our circumstances are unique, but consider where you’re at right now. It is time for a new pair of sunglasses and a fresh perspective? For most people, it doesn’t come naturally, but takes effort and consistent practice.
Whatever it is you’re facing, there are elements of good to be found. I’m not talking about perfection, bliss, or a pathway of ease, but there is reason to hope. With that hope comes clarity of vision and the strength to keep pushing forward one moment at a time.