These are difficult times we are living in and I know there are many people who are struggling with the changes we are facing. I hope these inspirational quotes will give you some strength and hope to make it through difficult times.
“Strength does not come from winning. Your struggles develop your strengths. When you go through hardships and decide not to surrender, that is strength.”
~ Arnold Schwarzenegger
“The world breaks everyone, and afterward, some are strong at the broken places.”
~ Ernest Hemingway
“The Lord is my strength and my shield; my heart trusts in him, and I am helped. My heart leaps for joy and I will give thanks to him in song.”
~ Psalm 28:7
Needing Inspiration For Strength
One hot July evening, after dinner, I found myself hiking on a dirt road up a hill in the North Georgia mountains. My classmates and I had just arrived at the US Army Rangers training center and were being taken to the top of the hill to have a class on terrain features. In the heat and humidity, we walked for over an hour until we arrived at the top of the hill. The instructors pointed out the different terrain features we would need to learn for our land navigation class the next day.
At the end of the class, the instructors told us we would have to find our way back to camp by ourselves and couldn’t use the road. Simple enough, I thought, we can just walk down the mountain through the woods until we get there. I was hoping to be in my bunk in a couple of hours. To add a little difficulty, the instructors would not let us leave until it was completely dark.
“Difficulties are meant to rouse, not discourage. The human spirit is to grow strong by conflict.”
~ William Ellery Channing
“Out of suffering have emerged the strongest souls; the most massive characters are seared with scars.”
~ Khalil Gibran
Into The Darkness
We began our trek down the hill in a single file line. Quickly, we became aware that this was going to be more difficult than we thought. It would take all of our strength and my hope of an early night was fading. Once we entered the tree line, it was completely dark and you couldn’t see your hand in front of your face. The only thing that we could see was glowing moss on the ground and the two strips of phosphorescent tape we had sewed onto the back of our boonie hats, they called Ranger eyes.
We had to walk painfully slow as we did not know what was in front of us. Every now and then the Ranger eyes in front of you would disappear and somebody would cuss. We knew that the person in front of us had fallen into a ditch and we would have to navigate our way down the ditch and back up the other side.
“One’s dignity may be assaulted, vandalized and cruelly mocked, but it can never be taken away unless it is surrendered.”
~ Michael J. Fox
“There is a saying in Tibetan, ‘Tragedy should be utilized as a source of strength. “No matter what sort of difficulties, how painful experience is, if we lose our hope, that’s our real disaster.”
~ 14th Dalai Lama
Strength and Perseverance
It took us several hours and used up a lot of our strength to make it down the hill and find the road. We met up with the Ranger instructors and just had a short walk back to camp. Little did we know that the fun was just beginning because our instructor got lost. After several hours of walking and constantly being told, “It’s just 500 yards more,” we knew something was wrong, especially when we came upon a civilian neighborhood. Luckily, it was probably 4 or 5 o’clock in the morning and no one was out.
As the sun was coming up, we walked through the gates of the Ranger camp. We were all exhausted, cut up, bruised, and battered by the time we made it back to our barracks. Something that started out sounding so easy turned into an all-night struggle. We all persevered and overcame and no one had any serious injuries.
“The harder you fall, the heavier your heart; the heavier your heart, the stronger you climb; the stronger you climb, the higher your pedestal.”
~ Criss Jami
“We are only as strong as we are united, as weak as we are divided.”
~ J.K. Rowling
A Real-Life Mission
About a year later, I found myself in a similar situation during a real mission in the jungles of Peru. We had to move our team through the jungle at night and find an airstrip. There was going to be several hundred kilograms of cocaine delivered to that airstrip the next day. As we were walking through the jungle, I thought back to that night with the Rangers and how we used our stamina to overcome all the obstacles in front of us and find our way back. Going through those struggles made us better and gave us the strength to complete our mission in the jungle.
Why Can’t It Be Easy?
Do you ever wonder, why isn’t everything easy? Wouldn’t it be so nice if we could go through life without any struggles? Especially during these trying times in which we are currently living. Unfortunately, that doesn’t happen because life itself is a struggle and it takes strength and perseverance to get by. People who succeed in life are persistent. They learn how to improvise, adapt, and overcome. This is a phrase that Clint Eastwood made famous in his movie, Heartbreak Ridge.
“All the adversity I’ve had in my life, all my troubles and obstacles, have strengthened me…. You may not realize it when it happens, but a kick in the teeth may be the best thing in the world for you.”
~ Walt Disney
I remember hearing a story one time about a man who came upon a cocoon in a tree. As he looked at the cocoon he could see the caterpillar had changed into a butterfly and was struggling to break free. The butterfly continued to struggle and the man thought he would make it easier by opening up the cocoon. The butterfly emerged once the cocoon was opened and he could see that there was something wrong. The body was thin and the wings were misshapen and fragile. The butterfly fell to the ground and died. What the man didn’t know was, it is the struggle in which the butterfly goes through trying to break out of the cocoon that gives strength to its body and wings and allows it to fly off. Humans are no different, our struggles make us stronger.
Laws Of Nature
These are simply laws of nature that illustrate you can’t get something great without giving something up. The struggles that we go through are necessary in order to accomplish our goals. God presents these struggles to us and we must learn to overcome. Even though our struggles seem mighty, God never gives us more than we can handle. Whatever you’re going through, rest assured that it’s already inside you to overcome that struggle. The comedian Steve Harvey talks about his struggles when he first tried to make it in comedy. Looking at him now you would never know that he had to live in his car for three years while he was struggling to make it. He persevered and now leads an abundant wealthy lifestyle. He had no idea of how long it would take him to achieve his goals.
“You have power over your mind – not outside events. Realize this, and you will find strength.”
~ Marcus Aurelius
The unknown causes more anxiety in people than probably anything else. The hardest time we go through is when we don’t know how long our struggles will last and they seem like they will never end. There is no timeline to life’s difficulties. Unfortunately, most people give up right before they would have succeeded. It just gets too hard and they go back to their old life. Perseverance is the key to success.
“Nothing is more beautiful than the smile that has struggled through the tears.”
~ Demi Lovato
We must persevere because our struggles don’t last forever. As I said earlier, they can never be too hard because God never gives us more than we can handle. If you improvise, adapt, and overcome, you will come out stronger and better. You can have the life you always wanted. In order to persevere you must have a definitive purpose, a big WHY. This will get you through when it gets too hard, and you don’t feel like it’s worth the struggle. Do a little bit every day to get you closer to your goals and always keep moving forward, never go back. A great book to read on perseverance is “The Alchemist” by Paulo Coelho
“And one has to understand that braveness is not the absence of fear but rather the strength to keep on going forward despite the fear.”
~ Paulo Coelho
“A hero is an ordinary individual who finds the strength to persevere and endure in spite of overwhelming obstacles.”
~ Christopher Reeve
Are you hurting right now? Is life kicking you in the teeth and every day is a struggle? We are all going through tough times these days and no one knows when it will end. All we can do is improvise, adapt, and overcome. Set your goals, make a plan, and put action to that plan. Find your definitive purpose and if you don’t have one, ask. It will be shown to you. Keep things simple and form a team of people who will support you until your struggle ends. Were all in this together and we will need the help of each other to get through.
“Man often becomes what he believes himself to be. If I keep on saying to myself that I cannot do a certain thing, it is possible that I may end by really becoming incapable of doing it. On the contrary, if I have the belief that I can do it, I shall surely acquire the capacity to do it even if I may not have it at the beginning.”
~ Mahatma Gandhi
“He who believes is strong; he who doubts is weak. Strong convictions precede great actions.”
~ Louisa May Alcott
If you would like to share any struggles you are having, we might be able to help you out. Leave a reply along with your quotes, advice, tips, or links to helpful groups or sites in the comments section below. If you have any questions or requests for topics I would love to hear them. If you like this post, click on the little star and feel free to share it with others it might help. As always, my posts are based on lessons I’ve learned throughout my life. I don’t claim to be an expert or professional therapist, I just play one on TV (some of you might get that joke).
“Anyone can give up; it is the easiest thing in the world to do. But to hold it together when everyone would expect you to fall apart, now that is true strength.”
~ Chris Bradford
“Courage is the most important of all the virtues because without courage, you can’t practice any other virtue consistently.”
~ Maya Angelou
Unashamed Begging 😉
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“This Train Is Moving on, You Can Get on, You Can Get off, But the Train Keeps Moving on! We Are Going to the Top of the Mountain!”
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