Your Circumstances Are Tough, But You Are Tougher

Your Circumstances Are Tough, But You Are Tougher
Adriana Reyes Zendrera

Written and verified by the psychologist Adriana Reyes Zendrera.

Last update: 21 December, 2022

Sometimes our circumstances overwhelm us so much that we can’t see a way out of our problem. We tend to forget that we have power over our minds, regardless of what’s going on around us. What we think and believe about our lives determines how we feel. 

For example, if you think you are capable of overcoming a certain challenge, it’s more likely that you actually will be capable. We are, at least in part, the result of our decisions and actions.

In that sense, our circumstances are like a starting point: from that moment on — and even before — we have the power to start making decisions. You are more than the sum of your circumstances, make no mistake. Your personal power is immense. All you need to do is connect with your inner self so that you can go through life with strength and consistency.

The power of belief

Beliefs are preconceived ideas that we acquire as we grow. These beliefs affect you on a subconscious level. They make such an impression on you that you can’t understand the world any other way but through your particular mental “lens.” Sometimes, our lens gets blurry and cloudy and makes it impossible to see the light within us.

When we say things to ourselves like, “I can’t do it, I’ll never be able to do it, I don’t deserve to be happy…” we turn off our faith in ourselves to be able to turn hard situations around. This is so often the beginning of chronic dissatisfaction, which is so damaging to our emotional health.

Negative beliefs are very limiting because they truly destroy our dreams and passions. Changing the way we think depends only on us. And the first step is deciding that we want to get better.

“Whether you think you can or you can’t, you’re right.”

-Henry Ford-

Good self-esteem helps you overcome obstacles

Good self-esteem is where we must start if we want to transform our thoughts and feelings. We can’t expect others to give us love that we don’t give ourselves. How else could we get back up when we fall? We will never transform our minds if we don’t believe in ourselves. 

Instead of telling ourselves: I’m useless, I’m not enough, I can’t do it… we must try to change our language. We need to talk encouragingly to ourselves, saying things like: I accept myself just as I am, I am enough, I am capable, I love myself, I can meet my goals… If we do this, it will be much easier to look out at the world with hope.

For example, if you are in a relationship that makes you unhappy, why stay? Why should you keep feeding something that’s doing nothing good for you? Maybe you think that you can’t end the relationship because you don’t know what you would do without it. Or maybe you have children or financial difficulties. But if you don’t change what you don’t like, who is going to do it for you? 

Your circumstances won’t get the best of you

Life is full of ups and downs. We may have gone through grief, loss, or seriously unjust situations. In spite of the trauma and hard times we’ve had to go through, we are capable of recovering and actually taking strength from adversity. This is a concept called resilience.

Being resilient means that we dare to see and know ourselves honestly. It also means we are able to look pain in the eye. Instead of avoiding pain, we can accept and transform it, and then learn from it. If you don’t identify with this description, don’t worry. The good news is that resilience is a trait that can be learned and practiced. 

Resilience gives us the opportunity to accept and learn from our experiences, no matter the circumstances.

One of the most important aspects of resilience is flexibility. Being flexible improves our chances of adapting to adverse situations. So there’s no reason feel trapped by our circumstances. Instead, we should accept our vulnerability and pain and find emotional supportInstead of covering up our wounds, we can choose to heal them through acceptance. 

woman on a mountain triumphing over her circumstances

Start with reasonable goals so you can get where you want to go

One thing intelligent people do well is setting realistic goals. They are achievable, but not easy. They take work, but they aren’t exhausting. They require effort, but not wasted time. At the same time, intelligent people divide the path to their main objective into smaller goals. They are rest stops, where they can recharge and reevaluate the most important aspects of the next stage. Time to stop and see if they need to make any adjustments.

Good self-esteem and a strong sense of self can help us have more control over what happens to us. If we think that we are more than able to handle the situation, we’ll grab the steering wheel and not allow strong winds to decide for us. But if we’re unsure of ourselves, we are more likely to just blow around in the wind.

If we believe in our ability to make change and take action, we’ll see new possibilities appear. Changes will happen, ones that give us the opportunity to grow emotionally. If we set realistic goals, do things that are good for our well-being, and stop worrying about what others think of us, we will be able to enjoy our inner strength once again.

This text is provided for informational purposes only and does not replace consultation with a professional. If in doubt, consult your specialist.