It feels like I'm stuck in the mud. No, not mud - quicksand. Nothing is coming easily; I've been buried more than once in the past few months.
This is life. Sometimes progress is made seamlessly out of goodwill and intention. Other times it's as if you forgot how to lace up your shoes in the morning. You better find some slip-ons.
I like to consider the advice I may give a friend should they be struggling. This advice is often much nicer than the kind I freely give myself. My inner dialogue is more akin to a bully than a friend.
If, like me, you have forgotten how to tie your shoes - it seems you are stuck - or worse, moving in the wrong direction, here is some encouragement for your day.
No matter how hard it gets, you are never stripped of control over your actions, especially in times of notable adversity.
“Forces beyond your control can take away everything you possess except one thing, your freedom to choose how you will respond to the situation.” (Viktor E. Frankl)
Do your best to look objectively at any situation. Don't allow your emotions in one sense to compound into a world of negative feelings. You lose control of the situation the instant you lose autonomy over your thoughts.
“It isn't the things themselves that disturb people, but the judgments they form about them.” (Epictetus)
You are strong enough to overcome the challenge - no matter how daunting. Prove to yourself - through small actions - daily that you can create progress. Eventually, momentum will be built.
“You have power over your mind - not outside events. Realize this, and you will find strength.” (Marcus Aurelius)
And one final note, as this is something I've leaned into more than ever in recent weeks… Do the things you enjoy. Spend time with those you love. Allow yourself to reimagine happiness as less about good fortune or materiality and more about gratitude and presence.
A moment is always just a moment, and a challenge is always just a challenge - until you allow it to be something more.
Note to Self: Don't sacrifice your power by allowing emotions to cloud your understanding of reality and your ability to overcome a challenge.