For most of us, life is a mixture of placid and tumultuousexperiences. Like a roller coaster ride, life brings usperiods of smooth ride punctuated with interludes of stomachchurning, accelerating drops through the unexpected. As ayounger man, I tended to resist the unpredictable anddifficult life challenges coming my way, thinking that Icould keep life smooth and predictable by exerting control,working harder, and working smarter. Of course, I failed.

Now I realize that life is supposed to be just as it is. Infact, I’ve come to appreciate the breath-taking drops forthe opportunities they bring me-not that I always welcomethem, but I appreciate them.

Tough times have much to offer us. Only when challenged do Ihave the opportunity to experience who I am and what I cando. Tough times show me my true self, and permit me todemonstrate who I am to my loved ones and myself.

We are role models for some one at all times. As parents, weare probably somewhat aware of the role modelingresponsibility, but it’s not just our children who watch us.It often surprises me to find that someone with whom I’vehad infrequent casual interactions regards me a role modelfor some aspect of life. Perhaps this is not so surprising,when I realize that I hold similar regard for others, yethave not told them so.

Do you hold strong convictions about your values, such asintegrity, peace, equality, honesty, and loyalty? The bestway to demonstrate your convictions, to both yourself andothers, is to exemplify your values when you experiencetough times. It’s relatively easy to behave honestly whenthings are going smoothly-but much more difficult to behonest when you’re short of money and your bank makes a$1,000 error in your favor. What a wonderful opportunity todeclare and experience your honesty!

In the midst of your current tough time, remember thesetruths:
- Life is eternal.
- Much of the tough in tough times stems from fear of what might result.
- Most fears do not materialize.
- Regardless of the apparent severity of your current difficulty, to your soul this is simply a life experience, an illusion of reality for the sake of experience.
- There is opportunity within every difficult time-the chance to live as your highest self. Your behavior declares who you are.
- Life’s experiences have no meaning other than the meaning you attribute.

Author's Bio: 

Jerry Lopper is anauthor, personal coach, and consultant. His workshops,ebooks, articles, and coaching are available through where you can sign up forcomplimentary articles and coaching. For a complimentarycoaching session email to