In Helpful Stuff, Latest Research by christine


We humans can quickly experience feelings of victimization when things go awry…and believe me: I too have been apt to think to myself “why ME?!” when I have been bombarded with some icky problem.  However, there is often something to be gained in our problems.

 For example: I work in Human Services.  Many mental health practitioners chose to work in this field because they themselves or someone close to them have experienced social injustices, trauma, or mental health and addiction issues.  The adversity they have experienced often makes them better able to assist others with similar circumstances.  Their “problem” has now become a “gift” to assist others – one that fosters understanding and compassion and offers hope to those struggling with similar adversity.

“There is no such thing as a problem without a gift for you in it’s hands.  You seek problems because you need their gifts”.                            
~Richard Bach (author of Illusions)

 Problems have been known to foster resiliency and creativity while deepening our hearts, mind, spirit….and problems often strengthen our belief in ourselves (that’s one heck of a gift, in my books). 

Problems and the disappointments we suffer often set us on a better-suited personal path.  Our challenge lies in choosing to reframe our predicament from one of pessimism to one that considers what lesson or opportunity is present.  Of course, many of the gifts that come from our problems do not present themselves in the moment. 

Take for example a house fire I experienced where I lost all my worldly possessions.  I was certainly not able to tally up any life gifts that event was bringing me at the time it happened.  But now, I am grateful that loss occurred, for it gifted me with so much more than material possessions.  The feeling of liberation by veering my life in a total new trajectory did not happen immediately, but it did happen.  That fire and loss assisted me in redefining how I want to show up in this life.  I was gifted with the freedom to start again, in a way that allowed for my belief system and lifestyle to better align.  I now believe that my house fire was the best thing that ever happened to me, for I shed all the things (not just material ones) that no longer served me. 

Check out how Lisa Kudrow’s pain of getting fired turned into a gift:


The most beautiful people we have known are those who have known defeat, known suffering, known struggle, known loss, and have found their way out of the depths. These persons have an appreciation, a sensitivity, and an understanding of life that fills them with compassion, gentleness, and a deep loving concern. Beautiful people do not just happen.

Elisabeth Kübler-Ross

What gifts have you received from a problem?