We all at some point or another have wished for things to be different. Kids spend a great deal of time thinking and talking about how things are going to be when they grow up; adults, in turn, spend their time thinking and talking about what will happen when they reach their chosen milestone. There seems to be a perpetual feeling or belief that everything will improve as soon as we achieve a specific goal. But the truth is that there is no greener grass, and we will never be one hundred percent satisfied with every aspect of life.
There will always be ups and downs—there is always going to be a struggle. But the struggle is what gives us the momentum to move forward. If we were content with every aspect of our lives, there would be no drive to continue and improve. We would not be making our New Year’s resolutions to eat healthier, or get fit, or be more organized, or whatever.
It is easy to feel overwhelmed, to want everything to just go away because it feels like it is all too much to handle. It is often tempting allow the frustration and disappointment and hurt to shape our behavior in ways that create conflict with others. Those behaviors are most frequently associated with children and adolescents—individuals who quite literally do not have the capacity to maintain constant control of themselves—but adults are just as guilty of allowing their emotions to dictate their behavior.
What we seem to forget in those moments of frustration is that there are almost always other options. We get to choose how we react to situations. We have the ability to re-evaluate our goals and readjust them to make them more realistic or attainable. We may not have control of all of the circumstances that we encounter but we do have the power to move forward through adversity instead of wishing away our choices.