Are you feeling devastated?
Welcome to the human race!
The title of this blog, and the accompanying podcast by the same name, appear to have nothing to do with happiness. Yet they ultimately connect.
In the course of life, we will encounter people, events and circumstances that shatter our beliefs, threaten our relationships, undermine our values, and more. We face our deepest fears, confront our integrity and test our vulnerabilities under considerable pressures.
Devastation – the feelings of overwhelm, waste or destruction – affects us on many levels: emotionally, physically, financially, socially and even spiritually.
To demonstrate the many ways in which devastation can hit us, consider some of the following scenarios:
* Your trusted financial agent turns out to be a scam artist, absconding with all your hard-earned savings.
* Your newborn child is suddenly diagnosed with a life-threatening illness.
* After years of living together, your spouse announces that he/she is gay and wants out of the marriage.
* Your friend has exploited a close relationship with you for the purposes of twisting, injuring or otherwise undermining your reputation.
* The company or organization you’ve worked for – and esteemed for their mission – has been revealed as a complete fraud.
* A person in the judicial, legislative or law enforcement system betrays their fiduciary duties for the purpose of personal and/or career profit – and recklessly harms a loved one.
* The medical science to which you’d dedicated your life and career has suddenly been debunked, proven inherently flawed, and has caused harm to the people it should have helped.
* The firm you paid to assist you with a promising new life and career in a foreign country has sold you into human slavery.
Hope in the Midst of Despair
When life hits us hard, we feel overcome: exhausted, depressed, rudderless. We may even feel like the living dead. But in the midst of that despair, there remains within us a tiny sliver of hope.
Hope is the essence of eternal life. It’s the glimmer of light that shines perpetually in our deepest memories, reminding us of a New Day. Though barely discernible, it keeps our souls afloat even when we believe ourselves to be drowning.
In time, hope grows and glows anew. It may peek through for a moment before disappearing again from view but in that tiny space, what we see, feel and sense begins to inspire and infuse us with the promise of something better ahead. Like tiny buds first appearing on winter’s barren tree branches, life springs forth yet again.
If you’ve been struggling with one of life’s devastating encounters, I invite you to listen in to my latest podcast. In it, I share two stories, one of my own and a second from someone else. In both cases, expect to feel less alone and more connected to the promise of tomorrow for your life, too.
Click here or on the bar below for Podcast 148, Have You Been Devastated?
For a hopeful and happy ending to another story of devastation, check out this blog I wrote a few years ago. It’s about a special neighbor of mine and entitled, When Hard Knock Life Meets Tomorrow.
A second resource is this timeless song from the 1960’s that continues to speak wisdom to me today. Listen here for Turn, Turn, Turn from The Byrds.
Remember that devastation is common to the human experience. We can’t avoid it, but the manner in which we face and patiently endure its tumultuous waves can ultimately help us return to new life, peace and more.
Maura is an International Speaker on Leadership, Influence and Emotional Intelligence
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