How To Hang On and Press Through Life’s Storms

I got a tattoo. There. I said it. For the past month I’ve wanted to tell everyone, but I was too scared of what people would think. (Yes, life coaches get scared, too). After all, who gets a tattoo when they’re thirty-seven years old?

Me, apparently. And I love it! It replaced my wedding rings after:

  • one of my kids threw out my engagement ring in a fit of foster-child rage.
  • the heirloom ring from grandma went into hiding in a child-proof vault.

That my ring faced such hardship is only a shadow of the reality our marriage has been through. The tattoo is a symbol of the fighter inside, and an answer to the storms. It’s impervious to the effects of life with three pets, four kids and some special-needs. It will never get lost or broken. And it made my husband’s initials a permanent part of me, a symbol of the fact that in 15 years together, no adoption drama, special-needs challenges, job losses, personal crises or financial setbacks have managed to tear us apart.

You’ve been through challenges, too. Maybe someone threw out your trust. Or banged up your heart with careless words. Or you’ve had to make big changes because of a situation you couldn’t control. Maybe you’re just entering the upheaval, or maybe you’ve been living there for a while and you’re ready to leave. What now?

6 Ways to Keep Up the Good Fight

Have vision. Whatever it takes, cultivate a clear image of where you want to end up after the storm subsides, and life begins to resemble normal again. Who do you want to be? How do you want to relate to God, your family and friends? What will your life say about what matters most to you?

Avoid energy drains. Reduce or let go of commitments that don’t play to your strengths. Be strategic in relationships with intense or high-needs friends or family members. Do love them and be there for them, but also be attuned to what you can, realistically give. Let yourself be the needier one, for a change.

Nap. Get some extra rest. Make your night’s sleep a priority. Stress takes a toll on our bodies and nothing helps with that like some good old-fashioned rest. Plan it into the day, the week. Enlist friends to keep you accountable in this area, and to help with the tasks you’d usually be doing during that designated rest.

Grow. For all the struggle and frustration and pain of the storms, their biggest benefit is the growth they bring. So look for it. Dig in and learn everything you can for this season. Let yourself stretch emotionally, socially, mentally, and spiritually.

Open your eyes to what’s good. The smiles. The sound of laughter. The fact that your car started up this morning. Even that giant pile of laundry that needs folding – that it means you and the family have the clothes they need.

Never, never, never give up” (Winston Churchill). You know the story of the Tortoise and the Hare, right? Even if you feel like you’re crawling along at barely a turtle’s pace in what you’re facing, remember that the goal is to finish the race. So keep going!

Whatever you do, HANG ON. Keep fighting that good fight. Do what you, uniquely, are able to do to live out God’s best. {Even if that does mean getting a tattoo. :)}

“Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.” – Galatians 6:9

– Laurie

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  1. Nicole Unice says

    Laurie, I love this post. What a great reminder. (Plus I got a tattoo at 34 with the Greek word for “take heart”)…just a symbol of the confidence and courage I’d need in the year that followed!

  2. Michelle says

    I got a tattoo last year too and I turned 40 this year. I loved this post. Galatians 6:9 is one of my life verses.