Discover your Silver Lining

What if I told you, my friend, that even in amidst of a raging storm in life there is a chance to find shelter? To look up at the storm, stand in the middle of it and find the one tiny break in the sky that is beginning to let the sunlight back in. I'd like to share what I see and what I am continually learning. I invite you to come find a silver lining with me.

What if I told you, my friend, that even in amidst of a raging storm in life there is a chance to find shelter? To look up at the storm, stand in the middle of it and find the one tiny break in the sky that is beginning to let the sunlight back in. I'd like to share what I see and what I am continually learning. I invite you to come find a silver lining with me.

A silver lining describes the shimmer of light we can witness surrounding a cloud when the sky seems stormy and dark. It reminds us that the sun is still right there, even though we can't actually see it. Much as the sky fills with clouds, so too our lives get clouded with the stories we tell ourselves and each other of how we should look, how we should think, how we should act, how we should feel. Stories of what it means to be succesful in life, what it means to be a real woman or a real man. Stories of the hardships and sufferings of life, the struggles we have had or are currently facing, the  risks to our survival. I don't disregard the reality of these stories. Nor am I dismissing their gravity. Yet, when enough of our stories gather like storm clouds across our sky, all of life can begin to feel heavy and threatening, and we forget to see the joy that shines just beyond the clouds. The joy that I believe is always within reach, even if just in the form of the tiniest silver lining.

Anyone who has ever experienced a transition from winter to spring, especially in The Netherlands knows how powerful the effect of the sun can be. People everywhere gather on sidewalks, tiny rooftops, strips of grass - as if finally, after months of hardship they have an excuse to simply sit and enjoy for a moment. Enjoy meaning literally to “be in joy”. For a moment everything else seems to fall away, become less important; it can suddenly wait for another 10 or 30 minutes. But what if we could be in joy even when our skies are clouded over?

Seeking out silver linings is something I have done my entire life. It has given me the power to see opportunity where others might see struggle and hardship. To see connection and creative solution where there otherwise might be conflict and disresolve. With this I have been able to assist several entrepreneurs in birthing beautiful, conscious business ideas. I have been able to assist co-creators and friends in having connected conversations and in making daring decisions for their lives.

Finding silver linings means looking at the sky. Standing still and really taking all of it in, however stormy, however dark. Leaning in closely and then zooming back out. It means taking in multiple perspectives. It means searching for opportunity, connection and joy. It means being attentive, mindful and compassionate. It takes practice. And the rewards are magnificent! Life affirming and life changing.

We all need extra tools for the diverse nature of our lives. To be expansive in life, we need an expanded toolset. And I’d like to share mine with you.   

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