Difficult Life Journeys


Journeys That Change Us Can Also Transform Us


The journeys you do not choose, and do not want to take, are often the ones that change you – for better or worse.  Part of Integrated wellness is taking on such journeys in such a way that they do not destroy parts of you, but instead bring depth of spirit and greater meaning and understanding that enriches the rest of your lives.  These unchosen journeys that open us to suffering, distress, and anger can open whole new dimensions of being.  For those reading this during such a journey, open to the possibility of the following.
    • Difficult journeys often involve very negative factors. When you do not give in to the negative, you are developing an inner strength you never knew you had.  Sometimes, each day is a battle between losing personal ground, and gaining personal ground with the negative that comes from distress, anger that “this” happened to you, etc..
    • Another difficult personal challenge is to release the attachment to what you had grew comfortable with – ever so hard – and instead, realize the future is where you will take your focus and strength.  If the journey involves losing a relationship to a loved one – the most difficult journey – you must grieve.  Enough is known about grieving that there is help and assistance available, and you deserve to receive that.  You have an opportunity to develop even deeper bonds with those who “step up” to help, with your “self” (during such times reading or reviewing the Relado page can be helpful).   Each day, look, and develop the capacity, for appreciating the little moments emotional release.
    • Depression and anxiety, to some degree, have to be dealt with. Take the reality of this as part of the journey and seek help from grief counselors. So many individuals do not know that the suffering can be lessened by such counselors, and should be considered simply as part of the journey – do not trap yourself with “I really don’t need that,” “I don’t have the energy,” or “I cannot add anything else during this.”
    • Perhaps the greatest treasure is that heart break of any kind and degree can open the way to a very quiet and deep realization that you have the will to get through any situation; and you can stay loving in life no matter what.
To Best Live Through These Journeys, Find Support that Sustains You — These Journeys Should Not be Taken Alone When Possible


Regardless of who is around us and with us, fears, anxieties, as well as loss of hope and positiveness take hold within us at times throughout difficult life journeys.  You are not ‘losing ground,” just emotionally cycling through these emotions. No matter how strong your will and positiveness, there are times when you will experience these.  Hold yourself with compassion and care.  Tears, weeping, and sobbing are not a sign of weakness but of the emotional strength to hold such times.

No one can crawl into our thoughts and emotions.  So, in these journeys, sharing and processing with others often has to be a conscious and intentional act.  Part of Integrated wellness is learning the personal skills of how, what, and when to share with whom.  Here are a few tips:

First level of sharing: During very difficult life journeys you may find a friend or acquaintance who contacts you genuinely offering their help and understanding. You may be surprised who approaches you, and you does not.  Let go of judgment of those who do not (there may be deeply personal struggles that hinders the offer of help.)  You must discern (see Discernment page) if the individual(s) reaching out to you will be positive and strengthening influences or expose you to their own negativity and generalized anger.  If the person shows caring, without wanting to direct or tell you what you need to do, then they can help. One strong indication if this is a person that can help is if they offer to help out any way they can,

You need to have the strength to say, “I do not know how to get through this, but I will, and I will monitor myself so that I place too much dependence on you.” This takes an amazing amount of pressure off everyone.  If a friend is chosen, the agreement is that the friend does not have to make the decisions that you must make for yourself; and that you may make decisions that your friend can have input in, that you will seriously listen to.  And, most of all, the person(s ) will help you process what you need for you to find your way through what you are facing.

When more is needed: A person trained in Transitional Psychology, not just a therapist or counselor, is an excellent mentor.  Astute and compassionate questions can lead to those inner riches to be found in these journeys.   These mentors should be both compassionate and provide insights that give direction as well as relief.  Each session should give you one or the another.  However, choices and decisions are understood to be yours – this is actually to help you develop that inner strength.  If no one with this training is available, use the internet or library, or have a willing friend gather information about Transitional Psychology, and use it.  I have experienced times when no one could step up and help.  Reading Transitional Psychology information, looking for books by people who survived difficult journeys, and the like, saw me through, and I can recommend.

In general:  When sharing and mentoring in these journeys is possible, a huge inner pressure can be released.  Others’ perceptive sharing can be so valuable. So asking for assistance, without expectation that the person “should, of course, help” should not be neglected.  Then, whether alone, or with the help of others, remember that this journey is yours, not theirs.  Keep developing inner strength each step through the journey, which probably will include learning what you have not had to before, learning to allow and hold yourself the tears during those times of feeling a hopelessness/helplessness; and, even what grieving is and entering into its process.


Always Remember


In the difficult and unchosen life journeys, remember that each day, no matter how difficult, will give way to the next.  Sometimes you have to get through one hour at a time.  Also, you cannot find the true riches in life until you have to reach into the depth of your being – these difficult and unchosen journeys do provide this.  And remember, the will to love life in each and every day no matter what is the very best compass to the greatest treasures.