Monday, November 5, 2012

Cultivating Happiness

“If you will call your troubles experiences, and remember that every experience develops some latent force within you, you will grow vigorous and happy, however adverse your circumstances may seem to be.” –James Russell Miller

This quote charmed me as soon as I read it. I am always searching for words of wisdom which can help me maintain a positive perspective on the trials I face as a military wife. These words suggest that there isn’t any burden I could possibly endure that should prevent me from being happy. They propose that by viewing the difficulties in my life as mere experiences which build upon my character and strengthen my soul, I can learn to accept any circumstance I am dealt without forfeiting my happiness.
Though I wholeheartedly believe this to be true, putting it into practice is easier said than done. There have been many times when my circumstances led me down the path of negativity and any attempt to take a positive perspective was overpowered. Deployments, demanding schedules, distance from family, and moving are a few of the situations which have troubled me over the years. Many times I knew exactly what it was I should be doing to get off the pessimistic path, but the will to do so was simply not there.
When I hesitate to see what is positive, I not only hurt myself but the rest of my family as well. The kids, with their remarkable intuition, can sense the anxiety emitting from me which, in turn, affects them negatively. My husband, as if he doesn’t have enough on his mind, must take extra care not to upset me even more, and we all know there is no defined line between what does and does not make a troubled woman upset. Furthermore, if I am stressed out it doesn’t make it easy for him to feel content. So basically, an anxious mommy equals no fun for anyone.
There is no denying that there is a time and a place for pining, but imagine if we put as much effort into positive thinking as we did into brooding.  We must remember that our troubles are part of our life experiences. They allow us to grow and change and become better versions of ourselves. They allow us to more fully appreciate the good times. They give us a reason to rely on others and create great friendships. It may sound contradictory, but our troubles are the things which make our lives all the more fulfilling.
It takes a lot of perseverance to overcome our negative tendencies, but with diligence we have the opportunity to create a new force within ourselves, a force which will conquer negativity and cultivate a spirit filled with happiness.

No comments:

Post a Comment