What Doesn’t Kill You Makes You Stronger – Does It?

South Padre Island: A person takes advantage o...

South Padre Island: A person takes advantage of the early morning for peace and quiet. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

How many times have you heard the phrase “What doesn’t kill me makes me stronger?”  Probably countless of times, and usually from someone who is going through rough times.  I always agreed with it, that is, until I had to say it.  The issue with it is that it doesn’t tell the story.  It assumes that the person will have a quick recovery from what almost “killed” him or her.  The truth is that unless that person struggles and fights to stay afloat and takes action to become stronger, that person can become paralyzed, stuck, traumatized, and remain a “living dead,” broken and far away from being “strong.”

What if you went through a significant circumstance in your life which marked you in a way that although you know you have to keep going, it has become very hard to do so?  You may stay alive but with little to no strength to fight.  This may apply to different situations.  One thing that I have learned is that what doesn’t affect someone may paralyze another – we respond and deal with situations in our own way.  The struggle can be brief, or long, and the longer it takes, the outcome becomes either,

  • you become paralyzed in your own situation and fear – and stay iddling,
  • or you come out a bit wrinkled, tossed, teared, just as a thin piece of paper, but those creases are what made you hold on and keep it together.

In either case, you must take a step to come out.

Pondering about this, and notebook in hand, this is what I was inspired to write.

One way in which you can become stronger is by,

  • Asking for help – the kind that you might need, whether professional, financial, spiritual, from a friend …  However, there is so much that outside support can help, and you must help yourself.
  • Pick yourself up.  Get dressed everyday, take care of your physical appearance, force yourself to look your best even if you don’t feel like doing so.  It is easier to wear your pajamas all day than taking the time and effort to look yourself in the mirror and work on your image.  This is only one of the pieces in the mirror that you might have to pick up.
  • Talk to your spiritual source – the fountain of your inspiration and divinity, whatever you may call it.
  • When you wake up in the morning, just say Hello.  It means that you are still here and ready to try once more.  If you happen to believe in a Divinity, then you are also greeting the divine source, and if you don’t, you are greeting the world in which you are waking up.  One more day, one more opportunity or thousands of them.
  • Love the people and pets that you hold dear to you.  Appreciate them and watch them be, and be grateful that they are in your life.
  • Pick up your environment, your home, and make it pretty again.  Right now, where you are is your home.  Clean, yes clean, as you clean on the outside, you are cleaning in the inside.
  • Talk to people and share, whether in person, phone, or online.  A bit of isolation helps you find yourself, but eventually you must emerge.
  • Do things one at a time.  Do things with loving care, taking time and minding them.  Don’t try to multitask.
  • Every night when the lights are out, in silence, give thanks for whatever you are thankful that day.  This is not so much to thank the divine or the universe but to acknowledge the good in your life, and make room for more blessings in your heart.  You will have more blessings, but for that, you have to make room in your heart.
  • As for your purpose, to each its own, and all it is, is a plan to make you happy – the ultimate goal.  Now go on, blessed be your life and the ones under your wings.


4 thoughts on “What Doesn’t Kill You Makes You Stronger – Does It?

  1. Well said and thought out. It’s good that we test expressions taken for granted like; Experience is the best teacher. Not so.

  2. This expression says it well, “swim or sink” and so does this one, “until you walk in somebody’s shoes … I think collective knowledge helps the individual, however, experience tests that knowledge. Thanks for sharing your comment.

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