Holding Onto Hope

From the age of wearing tutus and butterfly clips to playing with dolls and crayons, our worlds are filled with dreams. Dreams of falling in love; dreams of starting a family; dreams of making our wishes come true; dreams of achieving professional aspirations, and so on. Dreams are unique to each individual and ignite us with purpose.

Yet, in the midst of pursuing our hearts’ longings and goals, the difficulties of life can hurricane their way onto our perfectly sandy beaches and we’re left to pick up the pieces and rebuild. Why must we face life’s challenges? How, in moments of great despair, loss, frustration and grief, can we remain hopeful? Why is it vital to our well-being to remain hopeful?

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Take heart as we explore answers to these questions:

Why must we face life’s challenges?
When struggles come our way, the first thing we often ponder is: Why is this happening to me? Why do I seem to have it so much harder than everyone else? Hardships are destined to make port in each of our life’s marinas, but we have the ultimate control in deciding whether or not we sink or swim. Challenges are unique to each individual and have the capability to strengthen us as people. We must remember that life is a roller coaster of seasons, full of ups and downs, and each season plays an important role in molding us as individuals. Some seasons may bring great joy while others may bring deep despondency, but we must be mindful of not allowing the difficult seasons to dictate our future and disguise the simple joys that can be found in each day.

Challenges are guaranteed to come into our lives and test us, but we have power in deciding whether they spur us on or break us. When it seems as though your world is caving in, choose to turn the negative into a positive and utilize the strength you’ve built to encourage others journeying a similar path. Though our stories are personal to us, when we share them in boldness they can serve as great encouragement to others enduring a trial like yours.

How can we remain hopeful in moments of great despair, loss, frustration and grief?
The threshold of how much an individual can take before becoming despondent is different for everyone, but we can all relate to what it’s like to feel hopeless. The hardships of life are not to be ignored, bandaged or swept under the rug, but they must be confronted, dealt with and taken in stride. Just as time is intentionally devoted to life’s joyful moments (birthdays, weddings, and baby showers), we should also devote time to working through grief and hardships to acknowledge what we’re feeling. Only then can we move on healthily.

No matter the season we’re at in life, we should also remind ourselves of the hobbies, dreams and aspirations that give us life. When you feel as though you’ve lost hope, intentionally choose to partake in the activities that bring you joy. Whether it be going on a nature walk, painting, playing tennis, sewing, baking your favorite recipe or scrapbooking old photos, remind your heart that it can still experience joy and passion.

No matter the season we’re at in life, we should also remind ourselves of the hobbies, dreams and aspirations that give us life.

Why is it vital to our well-being to remain hopeful?
Not only are hope and positivity beneficial to one’s mentality, they are also life-giving to the body and increase good health. When our mind is in a constant state of negativity, we can become more susceptible to depression and illness. When you feel as though all hope is lost, remind yourself that even though life is continually changing and progressing, it’s still possible to uncover joy. Each individual has been given skills, talents and unique abilities, but ignoring these passions and talents prevents us from living a fully satisfied life. Intentionally choose to partake in an activity that inspires positivity and spend time with those uplifting friends that remind you of the hope that remains. Hope is always to be found, even when it takes an extra dose of effort to find it.

How do you remain hopeful in the valleys of life? What encouragement do you give to others that struggle with hopelessness? 

Image via Bethany Small

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Natalie works in the entertainment industry and loves traveling, the art of coffee, writing and deep relationships. Based in Los Angeles, she is passionate about empowering women to achieve their dreams.

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  • Ashlee Chu May 27, 2014

    This is such an encouragement to anyone in a life storm or fresh out of one. When we lose sight of our purpose and the purpose behind the things we go through; we lose sight of everything. Those challenging moments are certainly meant to spur us on.

  • Divya Mathew May 27, 2014

    Beautiful article and a much needed reminder!

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