New here on my blog, The Game of Life is an ezine I have been sending to subscribers via email for three and a half years. To receive your copy direct to your email inbox click here.
This edition is focussed on surviving and thriving during difficult times. It's inspired by the global economic crisis that is causing widespread stress and despair, and so there are a few resources that focus directly on dealing with being unemployed right now.
However, "difficult times" aren't limited to financial hardships, and can apply in every area of our lives. So, there's also some resources that look at dealing with difficult situations in general. I hope you find something of use to you.
"We’re living in a time where nearly everyone is feeling overwhelmed with the changes and problems in the world. Some of us feel stuck, uninspired and fearful. Others have suffered major losses and feel hopeless and helpless. Some people find ways to thrive even in bad times. They refuse to fall into 'the sky is falling mode'.”
In this post Tess of The Bold Life outlines no fewer than 77 ways to lighten up in tough times. And here she provides a list of the simple joys in life that money really and truly cannot buy. Just reading it will give you a lift.
Life is like climbing a mountain!
"We’ll stumble along the way in life. Our ego’s will be bruised. We might be broken financially or emotionally. Yet, that doesn’t mean we’re finished, or that our mountain peak isn't attainable."
In this post Lance from The Jungle of Life beautifully describes the various life lessons we can gain from this metaphor. If it feels like you're climbing a mountain right now, you may find some solace in this.
Meditation is the perfect antidote to stress!
I am just a few weeks away from being certified (hopefully) as an instructor in primordial sound meditation, and I believe that meditation could actually be the perfect solution to all of the worlds ills! It's a big claim I know, which is probably why I have yet to blog about it!
Whether you'd go along with such a huge claim or not, there is plenty of scientific evidence as to the wonderful benefits of meditation. And happily, Roger from A Content Life has posted a wonderful six part series on meditation for beginners.
There are many, many different ways to meditate, and how you do it isn't really important. We don't judge our meditation by the experience during the practice but by the results in our lives afterwards. So, the key is to experiment with different techniques until you find one that suits you. Roger's series is perfect for people new to meditation and walks you through a few different techniques.
If you are out of work:
Although the landscape is very bleak at the moment, there are jobs out there to be found. The difficulty though in the current climate is that the competition is fierce. Because unemployment rates are so high the sheer quantity of applications for vacant positions is overwhelming to those doing the hiring.
The first hurdle in a job search is just to get noticed. Sending out blanket job applications is a surefire strategy to receive blanket rejection - and that will begin to knock your self confidence, the one thing you really need to nurture right now.
If you're in the job market, you'll need to get a bit more creative about your approach and this article outlines many real-life examples of how people have gotten hired during the current recession. Be sure to read the last two paragraphs too - they're important!
This Wall Street Journal article looks at the benefits of volunteering, not only for the feel-good factor of doing something worthwhile with your time, but also because of the opportunity to upskill and open yourself up to a potential new career.
And here, Bob Lotich writes about how maintaining a positive attitude in the face of being laid off can help you find your next (maybe even better) job.
In this book Dyer takes a prayer by St Francis of Assisi and breaks it down into a series of lessons. He proposes that, if applied in your day to day life, these concepts will raise the vibration of your energy. What this means essentially, is that you'll live your life in closer relationship with your Spirit, and thereby find a spiritual solution to any issue that arises.
Dyer's own sense of inner peace pervades his writing, and he provides many, many practical examples from his own life and the lives of his readers as to how these principles really do provide solutions that you wouldn't logically expect.
The book is divided into two sections. The first provides an easy-to-grasp theoretical foundation to what it means and why it's important to align your energy with that of Spirit. Part two gives you the practical steps - how to align your energy with Spirit by following the principles outlined in St Francis' prayer.
Maybe you have some serious problems in your life right now, and maybe you don't. But one thing is for sure, you will have serious problems to deal with between now and the end of your days. That's a given. And our challenge in this life lies in how we deal with each issue that arises. Reading this book will (in my humble opinion) help you to prepare for, and cope with those challenges as and when they come up.
Lord, make me an instrument of thy peace.
Where there is hatred, let me sow love;
Where there is injury, pardon;
Where there is doubt, faith;
Where there is despair, hope;
Where there is darkness, light;
Where there is sadness, joy.
O divine Master, grant that I may not so much seek
To be consoled as to console,
To be understood as to understand,
To be loved as to love;
For it is in giving that we receive;
It is in pardoning that we are pardoned;
It is in dying to self that we are born to eternal life. ~ Saint Francis of Assisi
"Difficulty need not foreshadow despair or defeat. Rather achievement can be all the more satisfying because of obstacles surmounted." ~ William Hastie
That's my round up of resources on surviving and thriving during difficult times. Next issue (end July/early August) the theme will be self-esteem and giving it a work-out.
In the meantime, any other links to resources on dealing with difficult circumstances will be very welcome!