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Reframing Struggles into Strengths

The other day, I was speaking with my own expat coach about the last year of living here in Italy.



I was telling her that, while there haven't been too many giant obstacles, it's often felt like death by 1,000 cuts. Figuring out how to buy a car. Making mistakes in the language. Finding a dentist. Many small things that have added up to be stressful over time.


But then she challenged me in an interesting way. She invited me to reframe that phrase, "death by 1,000 cuts," into something that showed my perseverance.


So I came up with:


Strength by 1,000 cuts.


Rather than focus on the problems I've encountered, this reframing helped me to acknowledge that I have survived them all and come out all the stronger because of them.


Acknowledge Your Pain...as Well as How It Made You Stronger

Now I invite you to do the same. Where in your life have you focused on all your trials and tribulations?


Maybe it was your long, nasty divorce. Or the loss of a loved one.


We humans tend to wear our pain like a badge of honor. As if to say, "look at all I have suffered! Have pity on me!"


But instead, we're better off seeing how going through that pain made us better. How it was necessary for our growth, even if we didn't understand how or why at the time.


How can you shift how you see that pain and instead congratulate yourself for surviving it? Reframing struggles might shift your perspective to one more optimistic and one that proves to you that you are capable of anything.

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