“I can choose to let it define me, refine me, outshine me, or I can choose to move on and leave it behind me…”
I repeat silently to myself each time the world gets quiet and my mind gets loud. Clinging to these words has carried me through the some of the hardest months of my life. As someone who has suffered with numerous bouts of depression related to circumstance, fully understanding this truth has taken an extended period of time (& grace upon grace).
In moments of despair, it’s instinct to feel helpless. And truth be told, sometimes we are. We can’t pick and choose what storms come our way. There is always going to be curveballs we can’t quite dodge no matter how hard we try, but the secret is that the story doesn’t end there. Each one of us has the opportunity every single day to react to our circumstances. To choose happy, to choose patience, to choose grace.
It’s about choices. Knowing when to laugh it off, to ask for help, and to take a break from chaos rather than submit to feelings of uncertainty, unworthiness, or fear.
Sometimes it seems that if someone were to relieve that one thing dragging you down, everything would be lovely again. But fulfillment is already within you waiting to be retrieved. You may have to dig a little deep to find it, but once you do- let it shine so bright all the darkness seems to fade away.
Taking control of my world doesn’t come naturally, at least not for me. It takes work and isn’t always easy or flawless. But there is growth in the process. A few years ago I couldn’t stand the words “you are in charge of your happiness” because I didn’t believe it one bit. How could all the hurtful actions, words, & behaviors of those around you not have an effect on your happiness?
What I’ve come to realize is that sometimes it really does take the hard stuff to truly understand happy. It has a new meaning when it is following triumph.
Happiness isn’t in your circumstance. It’s not in your present moment or the future one. Happy is about the choice to be seen and heard, to put yourself out there, to stand firm in your faith even on the days it isn’t so easy. It’s about the constant effort to strive, love, sacrifice, recognize, and enjoy.
Knowing that I have the power to choose how my circumstance shapes my world is in itself the greatest opportunity for joy.
The reason I love this quote so much is because it can apply to anyone and everything. No matter your struggle, you have the ability to write the ending. It’s like those choose your own adventure books- picking the movement based on the crisis given.
It’s hard to see this clearly when you’re in the midst of dark & foggy clouds… so if you’re there let me remind you----- your pain does not define you. You are not your hardships, big or small. Life is real and life is hard, but life is so beautiful.
I challenge you to take a step back and really look at your reactions to the movements around you this week. Take a deep breath. Recognize your feelings, but be purposeful about breaking the habits that don’t reflect the kind of woman you want to be.
For one week, write down 3 emotions each day that you feel in response to a trying situation. Each night, really take the time to look at those, understand them, and then choose one step you can take that will lead to improvement. Whether it’s calling a friend, taking a day off, or getting up a little earlier each morning. It’s amazing the difference a little intentionality makes. Let us know how it goes!
If you’re anything like me and need to be reminded of these words every single day, you can pick up one of our mood stone pieces in the shop to wear as a tangible reminder that life is about choices. Choose your mood, change your world.
>This powerful blog post is from our Senior Intern Madi Conrad who we are inspired from everyday. Thank you for making this world a better place Madi!