It’s rarely when times are going well that allow us to get into a state of grace. It’s usually the times that bring you to your knees, that shatter your faith, hope, and life. A state of grace occurs in the moment you realize that as awful as your current experience is… It could actually be worse.
I have a friend who was recently in the midst of one of those “worst case life experiences.” You know, the kind of experience that becomes your worst nightmare? The kind you keep thinking you’ll wake up from but every day you get up and your issue is still there. The past few years for her have been agonizing; her sleep was impaired, her appetite changed, and her home life in a state of upheaval.
You see, she learned that her husband had an affair with her best friend. Who was also her business partner. Their families were extremely entwined and celebrated most holidays together. Their business had just completed a tremendous growth phase, and they were in the process of preparing it to go public. This affair, and the damage it did to all the relationships involved, was profound.
After much counseling, meditation, crying, and personal work, my friend chose to end her marriage and extricate herself from her business, as she felt she could no longer be true to herself if she participated in either relationship. Sounds easy to say, except that both choices generated a ton of legal work, and they were unable to come to an agreement about separating from her business relationship and it wound up in court. The process took two years… She was, quite literally, in the peak week of her lawsuit when one of her dearest friends died. It was somewhat expected; she had been sick for a while, but for it to happen during this most stressful of weeks was a shock. And yet… My friend chose to see her friend’s death as a reminder. That as bad as things get, it could always be worse. She was immediately grateful that her friend died when she did, so that my friend could go to the funeral. She was grateful that her situation didn’t involve death or terminal illness.
In my eyes, her house had just burned down. But she was able to be grateful that she wasn’t inside the house when it burned. Being able to find gratitude in her terrible situation is what I call a “State of Grace.” Even recognizing that her situation could be worse instantly freed her up. Yes, we’re all stressed. And sometimes sick. And almost all of us have financial concerns. But I invite you to take a moment and see if you can find for yourself that “State of Grace.” It’s is, quite literally, liberating.