There is something incredibly affirming, hopeful, and calming about identifying the things you are grateful for in your life. Because this process is self-empowering, Coaches consistently ask their clients what they are grateful for in their lives.
Gratitude has a powerful first cousin, “The Bright Side,” which is born out of difficulty and can be challenging to identify and embrace. Major events, difficult or painful experiences, and periods of crisis, provide us with ripe opportunities to learn, grow, and make changes in our lives. How these experiences stretch or transform us is “the bright side” – the positive side of a negative experience.
Challenging experiences not only build perspective, they sometimes radically transform it, and sometimes it is this transformed perspective that is in and of itself the bright side. Whatever the bright side is, though, it usually isn’t something we can clearly identify during a challenging experience. Rather, it generally comes into focus after some time passes. But, taking the time to reflect on the positives that have come from a “negative experience” can be an extremely empowering one.
Ask yourself: What are the bright sides of the difficult times I’ve experienced in my life? What did I learn, what opportunities did it present to me that I’m grateful for, how did I grow? I have found from my work as a Life Coach and Personal Coach that asking ourselves these kinds of questions helps free us from holding onto loss or anger by inserting gratitude into our perspective as we move forward in our lives. It also helps us stay focused on the people and things that we value most. And, it helps energize us for the future, since it reminds us of our resilience, the healing power of time, and the fact that while events are temporary, what we choose to carry from them into our future has an enduring impact.