I really wanted to share something today about one of my favorite things to talk to people about: being "better" not merely despite what you've been through, but even because of what you've had to survive.
Now, whatever has happened in the past — it could be really, really ugly — it’s played a part in the decisions you’ve made since. Sure, those decisions may not have always been the best ones, but you are trying.
Being here reading this is proof that you’re trying.
Finding good quotes is a favorite thing of mine to do because it just goes to show that there are a TON of people, past and present, who've been through some sh*t too, and they've found the words for it.
Someone out there gets you.
If you're here now, trying to be better for all you've been through (and by better, I mean truer, among other things) instead of bitter, fighting everything, then here's to you.
I get you.
That's not one of the easy decisions in life.
A situation that once hurt you can teach you to be a more patient and forgiving person.
A person who left you can teach you self-respect and to trust your ability to rise up and carry on.
A dream shattered can humble you to the point of despair, a vantage point (and sacred ground) from which a new story can be told.
Granted, we could use all the help we can get.
Which is why connecting with other people, understanding how they see things, sharing and listening is something to hold dear in this world.
These quotes inspire me to be a better, truer version of who I am. Somebody else thought these things, wrote them down, experienced them.
That sense of community — knowing someone else has made it through tragedy or betrayal and has come out the other side, more alive than before — is a lifeline for life's hardest things.
I hope one of these ideas can bring a little sunlight to you, too, wherever you're at in your own process.
(And it is your own process.)
11 Quotes about Being Better, Not Bitter
1. "Trauma permanently changes us. This is the big, scary truth about trauma: there is no such thing as 'getting over it.' The five stages of grief model marks universal stages in learning to accept loss, but the reality is in fact much bigger: a major life disruption leaves a new normal in its wake. There is no 'back to the old me.' You are different now, full stop.
This is not a wholly negative thing. Healing from trauma can also mean finding new strength and joy. The goal of healing is not a papering-over of changes in an effort to preserve or present things as normal. It is to acknowledge and wear your new life — warts, wisdom, and all — with courage." — Catherine Woodiwiss
2. “This life has been a landscape of pain and still, flowers bloom in it.” — Sanober Khan
3. “Don’t allow your wounds to transform you into someone you are not.” — Paulo Coelho
4. “Tenderness and kindness are not signs of weakness or despair, but manifestations of strength and resolution.” — Kahlil Gibran
5. “What happens when people open their hearts?”
"They get better.”
― Haruki Murakami, Norwegian Wood
6. “You cannot get through a single day without having an impact on the world around you. What you do makes a difference, and you have to decide what kind of difference you want to make.” — Jane Goodall
7. “In a gentle way, you can shake the world.” — Mahatma Gandhi
8. “First, it is an intention. Then a behavior. Then a habit. Then a practice. Then a second nature. Then it is simply who you are.” — Brendon Burchard
9. “You must not ever stop being whimsical. And you must not, ever, give anyone else the responsibility for your life.” — Mary Oliver, Wild Geese
10. "We think that the point is to pass the test or to overcome the problem, but the truth is that things don’t really get solved. They come together and they fall apart. Then they come together again and fall apart again. It’s just like that. The healing comes from letting there be room for all of this to happen: room for grief, for relief, for misery, for joy.” — Pema Chödrön
11. “But my heart is not weary, it’s light and it’s free.” — Bob Dylan, Mississippi
. . .
Which of these quotes speaks best to what you're trying to do now with your life?
Tell me in the comments. I'd love to know your point of view on these things.
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