Beauty in the Breakdown

When we are no longer able to change a situation…we are challenged to change ourselves. ~ Viktor Frankl

Photo credit: Kristina Leonardi

I recently read about a pill being developed that would erase unpleasant memories, kind of Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind-ish. Of course I was appalled. It’s bad enough the American public is seduced by quick fixes to deal with many physical ailments that a simple change in diet and exercise, a reduction in stress, a healthy dose of self-love and/or a little mind/body/spirit elbow grease would take care of. Now they want to get rid of negative memories?!?! We’re already a society who overeats, overdrinks/drugs, over sexes, over technologizes, overworks and over reality shows to avoid what we’re feeling!

There’s a saying that many athletic coaches and trainers use: No pain, no gain. Yes, that can certainly apply to losing 20 pounds or training for a marathon, but it also applies to our inner workouts. As humans we like to avoid pain as much as possible, but pain can be a very useful tool if we let it. Emotional, mental, physical or spiritual/soul pain shows us where we’re out of wack and where attention needs to be paid and adjustments must be made in order to learn and grow in any area of our lives.

To the extent that you are “asleep,” the Universe is going to use some big ol’ version of its alarm clock to wake you up and give you a big kick in the butt to do something about it. And a kick in the butt doesn’t feel too good, but we all need one now and then to propel us into action. Most of us don’t want to endure prolonged suffering, so the pain forces us to take action. In other words, as I mentioned in an article I was featured in on Well & Good.com, we often need to have a breakdown in order to have a breakthrough.

Remember that without pain we wouldn’t know joy. When we are experiencing something akin to the “dark night of the soul,” think of the caterpillar who thought the world was over just before it became a butterfly, and that “it’s always darkest before dawn.” Sometimes we just need to go there; these are the times that are meant to test our mettle and force us to rise up like the phoenix from the ashes in order to evolve into a better version of ourselves — and who wouldn’t want that?

So if you’re feeling like you’re about to crack, have been sleepwalking a little too long, or need someone to push you off that diving board, just Let Go, jump in, what are you waiting for? Give me a buzz and we’ll find the amazing beauty in whatever type of breakdown is occurring in your life.

(Originally published on www.kristinaleonardi.com on April 24, 2012)

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About the Author:

Kristina Leonardi is a career/life coach and motivational speaker who has a proven record of getting “stuck” clients empowered to make lasting changes aligned with their true passions and talents in a short time. She provides a practical framework for each individual to make the most of their personal and professional lives, allowing them to recognize, connect to, and fulfill their role in the world at large and live with clarity, balance and direction. For more information visit www.kristinaleonardi.com or check out her profile on The Muse’s Coach Connect.

Click here to check out Kristina’s book of 131 “thought-provoking, inspirational and entertaining essays to keep you connected to yourself and this journey called Life” Personal Growth Gab (PGG) Volume One from Amazon.

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Read more about me and my work in these essays, which I refer to as PGG’s:

All Roads, Same Place | And Now, A Word from Our Sponsor | Strong Medicine | 10,000 Hours | Express Yourself