The Beauty of Trials

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Are you in that time and space where …

the nights just seem so long,

the winter just seems to drag on,

the rough patch just got rougher,

Are you in a difficult lot in life right now?  Wandering and wondering …

Why is this happening to me?

This isn’t fair!

How can I carry on?

What will my future be?

 

Much as we hate it, life has its ups and downs: disappointments and betrayals, broken relationships, creditors on the door, lost a job, lost a home, lost a loved-one. For some people, it may have seemed like it’s an all-time low or that the roller-coaster is never coming back up.  Trying times like these leave us hurt, frustrated, anxiety-filled and even depressed.

In the darkest of my nights, tears just rolled down; the grieve was so deep, no words can describe.  During these deepest moments of despair, I cried out, desperately to Jesus and guess what – He met me there!

There and then, He called my name and told me ‘to let go of the past’ and that ‘He is there for me’ and ‘He is enough for me’.  Through it all, I’ve learnt that He loves me more than I can ever imagine and He is always there with me.

So then, why the suffering and pain? I’ve learnt much from these trying times, how to forgive some people and rejoice with others, how to be content with what I have and quit complaining, how to feel for people, how to give and receive love.

Just like there’s no victory without a battle, no rainbow without the rain, no dawn without dusk (and we know the darkest hour lies just before dawn) – There can be no growth without pain.

When life gets overwhelming, everything can seem to crash in together simultaneously, leaving you with no room to breathe. This is when you need to breathe in the air of Jesus – cry out to Him. He will come and hold you, heal and love you, and take you through this season.  He’s been there for me, I’m sure He’ll be there for you.

 

Whatever your circumstances, know that God is working behind the scene, 24 x 7.

Whatever happens know that God has not left you.

It may not be what we expect but then again, how would He be God if He always meets our expectations?

Nonetheless He will bring you to a flourishing end and it will be more beautiful than what you can imagine.

 


Isaiah 55:8-9

“For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways,” declares the Lord. “As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.

James 1:2-3

Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance.

Maslow’s Self-Actualisation Theory

For the Psychology inclined, dig this:

 

The fulfillment of one’s potential, or self-actualisation is regarded to be critical to psychological well-being and optimal mental health (Rogers, 1959).  Maslow proposed that self-actualisation is achieveable only when basic needs (physiological needs, safety needs, belongingness and love needs, esteem needs) are fulfilled.  According to Maslow, self-actualisation includes being reality-focused, problem-focused, opened to experiences, receptive of self and others and autonomous (ruled by own values).  Self-actualised people may show negative attributes including stubbornness and detachment (Maslow, 1943).

In a study that investigated personality characteristics which correlate with self-actualisation.   Self-actualisation correlated negatively neuroticism but positively with extraversion, openness, agreeableness and conscientiousness.  All correlations were significant.  Self-actualisation is an important concept within humanistic personality theories.  These theories believe that everyone has the capacity to develop their full potential and achieve self-actualisation (which is important to psychological health).  Hence, the focus is on helping people become more competent and achieve optimal mental health (Rogers, 1959).  In this light, further understanding of self-actualisation will be useful in counseling settings as psychologists help clients advance towards optimal mental health.

 

Further Reading

 

References

Chan, R., & Joseph, S.  (2000).  Dimensions of personality, domains of aspiration, and

subjective well-being.  Personality and Individual Differences, 28(2), 347-354.

Costa, P.T., & McCrae, R.R. (1980). Influence of extraversion and neuroticism on subjective

well-being: Happy and unhappy people. Journal of Personality and Social

Psychology, 38, 668–678.

Costa, P.T., & McCrae, R.R. (1992). Revised NEO Personality Inventory (NEOPI-R) and

NEO Five Factor Inventory (NEO-FFI).Odessa, FL: Psychological Assessment

Resources.

Costa, P.T., McCrae, R.R., & Dye, D.A.  (1991).  Facet scales for agreeableness and

conscientiousness: A revision of the NEO Personality Inventory.  Personality and

Individual Differences, 12(9), 887-898.

Dahl, R.J., Wakefield, J.A., Kimlicka, T.M., & Wiedersteik, M.   (1983).  How the

personality dimensions of neuroticism, extraversion and psychoticism relate to self-

actualisation.  Personality and Individual Differences, 4(6), 683-685.

DeNeve, K., & Cooper, H. (1998). The happy personality: A meta-analysis of 137 personality

traits and subjective wellbeing.  Psychological Bulletin, 124, 197–229.

Draguns, J.G., Krylova, A.V., Oryol, V.E., Rukavishnikov, A.A., & Martin, T.A.  (2000). 

Personality characteristics of the Nentsy in the Russian arctic: A comparison with

ethnic Russians by means of NEO-PI-R and POI.  American Behavioral Scientist,

44(1), 126-140.

Hayes, N., & Joseph, S.  (2003).  Big 5 correlates of three measures of subjective well-being.

Personality and Individual Differences, 34, 723–727.

Heylighen, F.  (1992).  A cognitive-systemic reconstruction of Maslow’s theory of self-

actualisation.  Behavioral Science, 37, 39-57.

Jensen-Campbell, L.A., & Graziano, W.G. (2001). Agreeableness as a moderator of

interpersonal conflict.  Journal of Personality, 69, 323- 361.

Jones, A., & Crandall, R.  (1986). Validation of a short index of self-actualization.

Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 12, 63-73.

Knapp, R.R.  (1965).  Relationship of a measure of self-actualisation to neuroticism and

extraversion. Journal of Consulting Psychology, 29, 168-172.

Lolla, D. (1974). An operationalization and validation of the Maslow need hierarchy.

Educational and Psychological Measurement, 34, 639-651.

Luyckx, K., Soenens, B., & Goossens, L.  (2006).  The personality-identity interplay in

emerging adult women: Convergent findings from complementary analyses.

European Journal of Personality, 20, 195-215.

Maslow, A.H. (1943).  A theory of human motivation.  Psychological Review, 50, 370-396.

Maslow, A.H.  (1954).  Motivation and Personality.  NY: Harper.

Maslow, A. (1968). Toward a Psychology of Being (2nd ed.).  NY: Van Nostrand Reinhold.

Maslow, A. (1971). The Farther Reaches of Human Nature. NY: Penguin.

McCrae, R.R., & Costa, P.T. (1983). Joint factors in self-reports and ratings: Neuroticism,

extraversion and openness to experience. Personality and Individual Differences,

4(3), 245-255.

Pettit, J., & Vaught, B.C.  (1984).  Self-actualisation and interpersonal capability in

organizations.  Journal of Business Communication, 21(3), 33-40.

Rogers, C.R. (1959). A theory of therapy, personality, and interpersonal relationships, as

developed in the client-centered framework. In S. Koch (Ed.), Psychology: A study of

a Science. Vol. 3: Formulations of the person and the social context (pp. 185-256).

NY: McGraw-Hill.

 

Shostrom, E.L. (1964). An inventory for the measurement of self-actualisation. Educational

and Psychological Measurement, 24, 207-218.

Spielberger, C.D. (1972). Anxiety: Current trends in theory and research: I. NY: Academic

Press.

Stöber, J.  (2003).  Self-pity: Exploring the links to personality, control beliefs, and anger.

Journal of Personality, 71(2), 183-220.

Sumerlin, J.R. (1995). Adaptation to homelessness: Self-actualisation, loneliness, and

depression in street homeless men. Psychological Reports, 77, 295-314.

Sumerlin, J.R., & Bundrick, C.M.  (1996).   Brief index of self-actualisation: A measure of

Maslow’s model.  Journal of Social Behavior and Personality, 11(2), 253-271.

Sumerlin, J. R., & Bundrick, C. M. (1998). Revision of the brief index of self-actualisation.

Perceptual and Motor Skills, 87, 115-125.

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reconceptualization.  Journal of Clinical Psychology, 33(4), 1001-1005.

 

5 Ways to Eliminate Negative Emotions 2

2. Acceptance
This is another part of being in the now. Most people try to run away from their negative emotions. They eat, watch TV, have sex, read, or hang online.
When you get curious about the feeling and accept it as a part of you, it tends to disappear.

But how do you accept it when it feels so painful?
That’s the first hurdle you have to overcome, because when you do, you will realize that the pain was only half an inch thick.
You can either learn to let go of your negative emotions, or you can keep doing what you’ve been doing up until this point.
3. EFT
EFT is weird, but it works. Nowadays I use something called FasterEFT, which is more efficient and uses a few tricks from NLP, or Neuro-Linguistic Programming.
It’s faster, and it works better than classic EFT, at least for me. The mistake most people make is they dismiss EFT because of how it looks.

Another mistake is that they use it a few days and give up. Changing how you feel means going in and cleaning stuff up, and most of us have a lot of garbage stored in our brain, so it takes time.
But after a while you start feeling a deep sense of peace, joy, and wholeness. At that point you know that it’s all worth it.

Stay tuned for the more ways

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Written by Henri Junttila

What To Do When You Have To Take a Step Back – 2

In the process of any form of achievement there will be times where you take a step back
where things don’t go as planned and you fall into a bit of a slump.
These moments can hurt. But don’t quit…

step back

ladder to success

Inspire yourself…
Music, good books and the videos from Gary Vaynerchuk rarely fail to get me back in my groove. Discover your muses and then exploit the hell out of them in your down times.
Stop doing anything. Be still and relax. Taking a step back can be spurred from burning out and you can’t recover from that by running your engines even hotter. Don’t feel guilty for purposeful unproductiveness. Enjoy it.

Blast some music…
Nothing gets me pumped up more than playing some Ben Harper at a most likely unhealthily loud volume. Get some good speakers (fan of the Logitech Z-10 system myself) and get lost in the melodies.

Get something done…
Make some form of progress. Whatever it is doesn’t particularly matter, just kick your mind into gear by realizing that the step back was only temporary.

Hang out with friends…
This is essentially “Stop doing anything” but with the added distraction of your buddies to help take your mind off your step back. If you want to take a more active approach consider joining a mastermind group. Then you can hang out with like-minded individuals and take steps forward at the same time.

Solidify your plan…
What is your current plan of action? Run through it, slowly, and begin revising or removing any weak links. Make your plan a flawless sequence of events to take action on – there’s no room for mediocrity.

Smile!
Force one if you have to. Just smile. It’s proven that the physical act of smiling has the same effect as being genuinely happy. Sit, smile and breath.

Step forward…
Don’t live in the past. Take action that takes your forward towards your goals. Stepping back is an inevitable part of life – make sure it doesn’t become he only part of life.

In life and work, we’re bound to face many obstacles, What’s your motivation for carrying on?

Written by David Turnbull, the founder of DavidTurnbull.com(Categories: self improvement )

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