I was visiting my family in Southern California last month, and took a day to go enjoy the beach in Malibu with my husband and children. It was a gorgeous day, not too hot, and there was a nice breeze. There were many surfers there that day, riding the waves on their surf boards. They would hang out on their boards close to the shore, paddling with their hands through the water. They would wait for that perfect wave to come along, and once they spotted that wave, they would paddle faster, jump on their boards, and ride the wave to shore. I could almost feel the excitement and thrill as they got off their board.
Struggles and difficult times we experience in our lives may resemble waves crashing onto shore. Just like those waves they sometimes come unexpected and may feel very overwhelming and threatening. We do our best to try and avoid struggles, do everything in our power to have a “good life” free of difficulties and hardship, when sometimes it may be to our benefit to “ride the wave” and welcome the struggle as an experience through which we can grow and learn about ourselves and others. Facing difficult times can be very challenging and stressful, but if we try to stay on top of those waves and ride them instead of letting the struggles overwhelm us and ride over us, we will come out of those experiences stronger and wiser than we were before.
Losing a job can be a highly stressful event in a person’s life, especially if it happens unexpectedly. Like a huge wave coming towards us, it may feel very scary and threatening, create a lot of anxiety and stress in our lives. It may bring up a lot of questions as well as uncertainties about what the future might hold for us and our career. If we let that event ride over us, we will get depressed and anxious, lose sleep, and let that affect the relationships we have with the important people in our lives. However, if we look at the job loss as an opportunity or an open door, we will be able to see all the growth we can accomplish while searching for another job or choosing another career path, and seize the opportunities that may come our way.