Look Up!

How often have you struggled and asked ...

Why doesn't he love me?

Why do they treat me like this?

Why am I so overwhelmed?

How can I do everything right?

How often have you struggled and said ...

I have too much to do and too little time!

I'm frazzled and need to find balance.

My life is spinning out of control.

There must be a better way!

How often have you struggled and thought ...

I need to let go, but I don't know how.

I want to have friends and be social.

I want my kids to see me laugh and have fun.

I tired of trying and wishing I was different.

How often have you struggled and swallowed fear thinking ...

I want to love my family better.

I want to be loved better.

I need to love myself better!

I need to love God better and believe His plan for me.

I’ve Been There. There is Hope!

Laugh More!

Too often we turn even minor struggles into negative self-talk we then internalize.

I'm worth-less.

I'm stupid.

I'm unlovable.

I'm the problem.

It's my fault.

I don't deserve better.

I can't change.

If only...

Struggle should not define you; it should shape and grow you!


You were made to be Courageous!

You were made to be Strong!

You were made for Love!

You were not made to struggle, but struggle can make you who you are meant to be - if you let it!

It is in struggle that you find courage to seek bluer skies. It is in struggle that you learn how strong you can be. It is in struggle that you learn the power of choosing to love.

Struggle comes from a variety of sources. We give parents, siblings, spouses, children, friends, coworkers, and even random strangers and unfortunate events control over how we think about ourselves that defies logic.

If a friend spoke to us about the same insecurities we privately face, we would easily dispute them, yet we allow our secret fears and doubts to eat away at our psyches. Without realizing it, we allow ourselves to be fundamentally transformed piece by piece. Eventually we have given so many pieces of ourselves away that we can't define who we would be if we were whole.

We give our God-given power to choose who we want to be to those who have no idea who we are created to be.

This is not another criticism of you. It is merely an observation of your behavior that is a result of your training. The good news is you can, at any moment, begin to retrain yourself!

Like a military hero or an Olympic athlete, your ability to perform is based, in a large part, on how you are trained. While they attend boot camp and elite gyms, your training occurred in the home beginning before you were born and continuing to this very day. While they learned from Master drill seargents and internationally reknowned coaches, you learned from people who probably weren't much different from you. While they learned to be astute warriors and diligent competitors, you learned to love and be loved - or not. 

How you are trained matters. 

Training does not affect just our physical prowess. Mental toughness, gentleness of heart, spiritual well-being, and more are products of our training. If we want to discover love, find balance, and persevere, we must retrain ourselves. 

Our thoughts should not stem from how others thing about us.

There are people who have been treated horribly and go on to confidently do great things. 

The love you feel for yourself should be independent of how others feel about you, but how do you learn to love yourself when you have been so beaten down?

Retraining gives you actionable steps toward discovering who you were meant to be. "When you are who you are meant to be, you will," as Saint Catherine said, "set the world afire." It is in the blaze that you discover warmth and the ability to love yourself and therefore love others around you too. 

You may think negative feelings about yourself result from how others feel about you, but

Love starts with a decision.

Few people know how to change. Many know something is missing but can't identfy what that something is never mind figure out how to attain it. Many realize there is a disconnect between their desires and reality, but few can find the path to connect the two. Fewer still are willing to challenge the status quo in order to make needed changes when the opportunity presents itself.

Most continue doing today what they did yesterday while hoping tomorrow is different.

That's where you are already different from most people. You are already taking steps to learn how to retrain yourself to deal with struggle. You are already seeking leadership and like-minded community that will support you in where you want to go. You are already beginning to look at planks in your own eye so you can see more clearly tomorrow. 

You are already standing on the edge. 

Now, you must decide if you will jump, retreat, or continue teetering on the precipice. 

I hope you jump! 

I did and it has taken me far further than I'd ever imagined. Many others have jumped and been grateful for that jump too. 

Overcoming suffering and growing through struggle begins with a decision then moves to

We often think the first step to changing our feelings is changing our thoughts. This skips two very important steps. First, you need to decide to make a change. You can't be wishy washy or half-hearted. You have to take the first step. That doesn't mean you won't ever struggle with doubts. That's part of why making connections and being part of a community that is on a similar voyage with a common destination is so important. That is why your community must be built on a foundation of stone rather than sand. We will help build you up in those weak moments. And, hey don't worry - we all have them! Again, these weak moments are part of the struggle that chips away at who we are not to create who we are meant to be. 

Second step in learning to love yourself and your life is to act. Remember, the things you struggle with are most likely a result of your training. Training usually involves some sort of action. Think of the young military recruit entering Boot Camp. He thinks he knows what he is getting into, but until she actually goes through the day to day grunt work, she cannot learn to feel

Thoughts control feelings. Behavior  is a result of you accepting defeat one too many times. It is a result of you not making the decision to change. It is a result of you preferring the comfortable yuck to the frightening prospect of courageous growth.

But there is good news - you can retrain yourself! People do it all the time (I have a page full of videos of inspirational overcomers who started out no different from you!)

Struggle does not have to define you, but it does make you who you are.

Strahlen Grace Life Coaching

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