Year over year I've learned that "bad" periods often precede a GRAND benefit. It's so hard to see it amidst actual struggle, but as we shape our mindsets growing older and wiser, we become self-aware enough to embrace moments of the highest highs as equally as the lowest lows.
Exhibit A: I've lost friends only to gain better ones along the way or reconnect more authentically with relationships once lost amidst adversity.
Exhibit B: I've taken the best jobs and/or promotions after overcoming professional turmoil and uncertainty.
Exhibit C: I've come to build such a loving and mature marriage after overcoming a period of brokenness and unhealthy coupling.
Exhibit D: I've met amazing goals after failing over and over again at the same goals.
I could go on and on about the periods of my life that were so "bad" or "hard" and yet those moments now attribute to success, developing and growing to become a better person and perspective to embrace goodness.
Adversity gives us contrast. We know sweetness only when we've tasted intense bitterness. This contrast is essential to life. In my opinion, we live life's journey as two sides of a coin with two parts of every emotion experienced. It's only until one devastating emotion is felt that we truly know and appreciate the opposite of set emotion.
The best marriage advice I ever received was from an unmarried woman who was the worst professional coach ever but was suppose to mold me professionally. Instead she ended up in one chance encounter counseling my husband and I in the midst of marital turbulence leading towards imminent divorce. She assured us to remain hopeful, faithful, and true and to remember how hard we once loved and possibly hated each other. Those emotions having been so intense and raw, we'd likely never love again in such a way without guarding our truest selves from future love. She was right. I came to feel such immense pain with my husband that to come to the other side of the pain and express immense love - well surely only greatness could result. This woman was right telling us to accept the adversity, we did just that and we've been married many, many years since. Plus, our marriage only grew from that lowest point in time to become one of our proudest accomplishments.
So again, to know a good friend, you must first have a bad one. To elevate your marriage you must first fail at it. To be professionally successful to the highest degree you must have also failed to the lowest point. May not make sense at all, but it is my truest belief that adversity is a good thing. Adversity brings success, so embrace it. Learn to live through it and know that when you're uncomfortable in it, that's a good thing with something amazing coming just around the corner for you! So hang on in the struggle because something big AND great is about to happen.