As we age, we eventually learn and recognize that hardly “anything” worth “something” comes easy. There may be a few exceptions, but the values that we hold onto the most dearly are usually well-earned. The harder the struggle to obtain a goal, the more cherished it becomes.

When we encounter the tough times in our lives, how we respond to them defines our character and subsequent quality of life. It’s during the tough times that we are forced to make a choice. We can choose to sit in perpetual sadness, or we can choose to rise and overcome. As dire the consequence, we almost always have a choice. It often requires looking deep inside one’s inner-being. Those who become the most content, do so by not showing their inner strength to the outside world, but by fighting and winning the inner battles that others do not know anything about. They use their own stumbling blocks to build a better constitution.

There will be times when we become so buried within ourselves that we feel that we cannot overcome the sadness and burden. We put up walls that eventually become impenetrable, even for those that care the deepest about us. When sunk to such depths, it is a good time to reach out to others. There are people who have felt similar pain and experienced deep sorrow, but in their darkest moments found the courage to become strong. We can benefit from soliciting their advice and encouragement. It is an individual’s choice to become astute and incorporate the wisdom of others into their own lives. The love from others can be powerful and used to overcome the darkness.

The strength to battle the natural feelings of apathy and discouragement is not a constant. The strongest iron is forged by fire. Before its solid state, iron is molten liquid that is both pliable and moldable. It is only after forging through fire that iron transitions to its solid state.

We can help ourselves by working hard, listening more than talking, learning from others, not always taking “no” for an answer, complaining less, and not making excuses. By doing these things, we decrease our chances of disappointment.

We need to push ourselves to be the best that we can be. We need hardships to help us appreciate all that is good in our lives. Life is often not easy and sometimes it feels insurmountable. Keep going…because you can.

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