Facing struggles throughout life is inevitable and can feel debilitating, or even impossible to overcome at times. There is nothing that can be said or done that could ever change that truth, but the mentality in which we approach our individual hardships is what brings forth the greatest probability for rising above all of life’s great obstacles.

We all experience those dark and rainy days, but you have a choice. You can either succumb to the dreary nature of the weather, or remain hopeful for the beautiful days to come. To fully appreciate the sunshine, you must first experience the rain. Through that rain, the earth is filled with beautiful botanicals that deepen the serenity that can be experienced when that sun finally does illuminate the world. It may sound cliché, but this metaphor can impeccably allude to the ups and downs experienced on a day-to-day basis. In order to appreciate our successes, we must overcome hardships. With patience, work, and time, the pain you once experienced will bloom into the most extraordinary flowers.

There is no denying the fact that we are constantly overwhelmed in a variety of degrees by different stressors that orbit our lives, so when you are oversaturated by life, you need to relieve the excess. Just like a sponge that is oversaturated with water, you must wring it out and rid yourself of the non-essential factors. The superfluous weight could be toxic friendships, debilitating habits, or anything else that does not enrich your life in some way. As you begin to remove the excess from your metaphorical sponge, there is a much higher probability that internal and external improvements will be made.

If you are tired of feeling down, you will have to work hard in order to reverse it. Wear clothes you feel great in, smile when you’d rather frown, and strike up conversation with a coworker when you don’t feel like talking.  The more you emulate positivity, the more likely you will be to actually feel positive even when the odds seem stacked against you. Whatever output you give to the universe is most likely going to come back to you in some way. Again, nothing can change the fact that life will never fail to challenge us with obstacles, but the mentality in which we approach those obstacles will determine whether or not we will emerge from the ashes.

When life hits hard, you must dig deep within your soul to find your inner strength, and when you don’t think you have any more fight left in you, dig deeper. Put one foot in front of the other and get through each day, one day at a time. You’ll need to channel your frustrations and negativity and redirect them into something positive. However, it does not stop there. Of course, finding the right mentality to deal with hardship is the first step, but working to change the situation is the key. Always think creatively to problem solve, and make the most of whatever challenges you face. Don’t allow whatever difficulty, pain, or overwhelming situation you might be experiencing be in vain. Challenges, and the way we choose to face them, elicit some of the most transformative moments of growth in our lives. So, take the world for all that it is, accept the things you cannot change, and keep working to learn something from every aspect of life. This way, when things get tough, you will be able to rise above it all.