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How Heroines handle the Storms of Life

An unforeseen event, an act of God, even one of those glorious life events, like a baby or a wedding. A rash of “no’s.” The sudden realization that this whole goal of yours is going to take a lot longer than you had planned.

sailboat on the ocean

Storms come in all sorts of flavors, but the one thing they have in common is upheaval, and the ability to throw us completely off course if we let them. Sometimes, permanently, if we take them personally.

But heroines know how to deal with even the worst circumstances, and how to do the impossible… How to dance with the inevitable storms of life. Good news, we can let the Heroine within all of us, teach us how it’s done. Not with white-knuckle-it, grit-your-teeth and “Embrace the suck!” power (although there’s nothing wrong with any of that!) but with Grace, Grit and Charm. With panache because, why not do it in style, if you have to do it all?

“Every Heroine knows to expect the storms of life and don't take them personally. It's just life, and it happens to all of us."

The first lesson in Feminine Storm Preparation? A Heroine knows to expect the storms of life, and don’t take it personally. Every life worth living, every adventure worth taking come with storms. You didn’t do anything wrong. God doesn’t hate you. The Universe isn’t giving a clear sign that “This ain’t for you, Toots.” It’s just life, and it happens to all of us.

In the midst of a storm is a great time to remind yourself of all the great women you know and love who’ve gone before you. I bet quite a few of your favorite Heroines had plenty of storms in their lives. In fact, the storms often made the woman. This little or large snafu you find yourself in? It’s not going to be the death of you, it’s going to be a new and better start. I often say, adventures don’t have roadblocks, they have plot twists. Things that in the long run often make us better.

Which leads me to my next point: Heroines figure out what they’re going to make the storm mean. They don’t just get bitter. They decide what they’re going to take from this experience. Whether it’s a new path to their ultimate goal. A lesson in self-care or something deeper. They don’t pollyanna this stuff either. They find the real and resonant meaning within it, even when it’s tragedy and trauma.

Death and illness are incredibly hard. A Recession is bitter, so is crop failure and a reversal of fortune. But even with the hard stuff we can know that it will deepen us, and give more compassion, more wisdom in the long run. And at some point, eventually become sweet. Bitter doesn’t make the sweet taste less sweet. Instead, it makes the sweet taste sweeter. Heroines know this. Be sure and remind yourself of it often.

This week find a book on one of your favorite people and discover how they handled the storms in their life. Read about how Diane von Furstenburg’s divorced a prince, with a child in tow and had to figure out how to support herself. Or watch a movie about every day Heroines, like Dark Horse or Maiden, and see how real life ordinary women became heroines and took all the people around them with them. You won't regret it.

Want more? I did a deep dive on this topic for the podcast. You can listen to it here!



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