“Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.” ~ Galatians 6:9 — Be encouraged today!
Welcome to my blog! I’m Ashani Mfuko, Social Media Strategist, Business Coach, TV Host, and Dance Entrepreneur. Today I am going to share some very valuable advice with you on, “How To Stay Strong and Positive During Difficult Times & Life Challenges”.
Lord knows, I’ve seen my share of difficult times and life challenges: from the unexpected death of a loved one, to almost being evicted, to dealing with the aftermath of a failed long-term relationship, I’ve certainly experienced some very low times throughout my life. But one thing has remained the same, no matter haw bad things got for me, and that is:
God has been so good to me! Even through all of my trials and difficulties, I am a living testimony that you can overcome sadness, depression, discouragement, and despair, by the power of His name.
I want you to know that, all of my advice, and tips, are based on biblical principles, so you’ll hear me reference scriptures from the bible that relate to what I’m talking about, throughout my blog posts here. All that I am, and all that I am able to do, stems from my faith in Jesus Christ as my Savior. He is the foundation of my joy, peace, and my life, and I’m so glad that I don’t have to go through life on my own, and in my own strength, as a result of my faith.
On that note, let’s delve into some of the challenges we all face on a day-to-day basis, and my 3 power tips for staying positive and overcoming your life challenges.
There are 3 main tests, trials, or challenges we all face throughout our lives:
1. Daily Challenges: Examples – leaving your keys in the car, missing the train for work, being overlooked for a raise at work, or rejected from an audition, having a sick child, a minor car accident, or getting surprised by an unexpected expense.
2. Major Life Challenges: Examples – the death of a loved one, a major sickness or serious injury, losing your home, being evicted from your apt, or the end of a serious, long-term relationship.
3. Extended Life Challenges: Examples – chronic pain or illness, unemployment, debt, finishing your higher education, waiting for your prayers to be answered, making major life changes (like overcoming an addiction, or unhealthy lifestyle or relationship habits), the journey to pursuing your dreams and goals, or starting your own business.
One thing that all of these challenges have in common is, they are all here to develop specific character qualities in us, that God wants all of us to have, which are:
Faith and trust in Him, patience, gratitude, empathy and compassion, and a desire to live our lives His way, based on His word, not on our own selfish desires.
All of the challenges we face each day, can develop these qualities in us, if we allow God to do the work that only He can do in our lives.
In my Motivational podcast entitled, “How To Live Your Purpose With Passion, Patience, and Perseverance”, I talk about how God calls all of us to: “love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind’; and, ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.'” ~ Luke 10:27.
Well, I think the hardest part of that is to “love your neighbor as yourself“. If you disagree, just take a ride on a New York City subway during rush hour, or at Christmastime, and you will feel my pain. 😉 But at the end of the day, we don’t have to try to over come these challenges on our own. God is there for us, guiding us, strengthening us, and encouraging us, every step of the way
So today, I’d like to share with you…
3 Tips To Stay Strong and Positive During Difficult Times and Life Challenges
1. Start the day right. Prayer, Bible, Meditation. If you have a journal, write in it. Write down what you are thankful for, and a some of the blessings that you currently have in your life.This can be anything from: “Thank you Lord for clean, running water, for heat, for being able to breathe, see, smell, and touch. Thank you for the ability to walk, for my food, clothing, and shelter, an dfor where you’ve brought me from , and what you’ve brought me through”. Let your first thoughts of the day be positive ones, and thoughts that uplift, empower, and strengthen you for the day ahead. Let go of disappointments and failures from the previous day and focus on all that is wonderful and positive about your life. Get centered, and let God give you divine guidance and strength to tackle the day ahead. Connect with inspirational and positive people on social media, so that your spirit will be filled, and surrounded with positive energy, all day long.
2. Know That There Are Seasons In Life, & Your Tests and Trials are Temporary. When you’re going through tough times, it can feel like they are never going to end, i.e., you’re never going to get over that ex, you’re never going to get out of debt, or move into a larger home, or a better neighborhood, or that you’ll never get the victory over an area of your life where you’ve failed time and again. But that’s simply not true.
“There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under heaven:” ~ Ecclessiastes 3:1 Just like the seasons of the year, winter, spring, summer, and fall. They begin, and they end.
I was talking to a woman at church last week, who’s a new mom, about child birth, and she said something to me that really stood out. She said that the pain of labor and delivery is easier to bear if you just flow with it, instead of trying to resist it, or fight it. That really resonated with me, because it’s the same with our life challenges. When you take your worries, problems, and difficulties to God in prayer, and actually leave them with Him, and not try to take them back, he gives you perfect peace. And even though you still have to experience the challenges, you have confidence that God is still in control, and that things will eventually work out, and get better, because God has promised that to you.
“The temptations in your life are no different from what others experience. And God is faithful. He will not allow the temptation to be more than you can stand. When you are tempted, he will show you a way out so that you can endure.” ~ I Corinthians 10:13
3. Be aware that you will have negative thoughts and feelings of self-doubt from time to time, and be prepared with the proper action steps to overcome and combat those thoughts immediately.
John 16:33 says, “I have told you all this so that you may have peace in me. Here on earth you will have many trials and sorrows. But take heart, because I have overcome the world.”
For every negative thought you have, think of three positive ones. For every one thing that you think is wrong in your life, think of three things that are going right. Your mind is a muscle, and it’s up to you to strengthen it, and train it how to think, respond, and react to challenges. Keep your thoughts positive, and your mouth will follow.
“Death and life are in the power of the tongue, and those who love it will eat its fruits. “ ~ Proverbs 18:21.
Speak life, speak hope, and remember that God loves you and has created you for a divine purpose. Remind yourself of times in the past, where God has proven himself faithful to you, and know that He has given you everything you need to get through your difficulty, and to experience all of the great things that He has promised you. You just have to hold on. Always reinforce the truth that, you are fully capable of reaching your goals, and getting through this difficult time. Speak the word of God over life: “With God All things are possible”, “I can do ALL things through Christ who strengthens me”,
When in doubt, refer back to your purpose, and know that your presence is needed in the world, and no one else can replace the unique value that you have to offer. The purpose and passion that you feel in your heart is there for a reason. Remember that you are a gift to this world, and your voice, your talent, and your unique perspective is of high value. Your presence on this earth will change lives, and could possibly save someone’s life.
Even if you don’t feel motivated at times for yourself, let the fact that you are influencing others in a positive way motivate and empower you. So when times get tough, say to yourself, “This may be tough now, but I WILL come out of this, and when I do, I will be stronger, smarter, wiser, more sensitive & compassionate, and equipped to help someone else who is going through the same thing. This is not just about me.”
- Write down all of the challenges that you are facing today, and all of the things that are bothering you/stressing you out.
- Now, write down all of the things that you are thankful for in your life, and write down three different instances where you went through a difficult time/trial, only to experience success and God’s faithfulness thereafter. Say a prayer, and thank God for His faithfulness, and for all that He is about to do in your life, and in the life of your loved ones.
- Encourage someone else today who may be going through a difficult time, and post an inspirational quote, or bible scripture on your Facebook page to uplift the people in your social network.
- Post your comment below, and tell me what resonated with you, or what your “A-Ha” moment was.
And lastly, sharing is caring. Please share this post with your friends and family on Facebook, Twitter, and your favorite social media sites. Let’s work together to uplift, inspire, and encourage one another! 🙂
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