About three months ago, my husband was unexpectedly laid off. It was a huge blow for him and our family as we were unprepared for this situation. However, as the news started to sink in, I found myself strangely happy and relieved. I saw his layoff as gift; it presented an opportunity for him to find a more positive environment where his skills and expertise would be utilized and he would feel challenged.
My aikido teacher, George Leonard, called this awareness, “taking the hit as a gift.” At various times in life we all receive “hits.” They can take the form of injury or accident, relationship struggles, career pitfalls, family crises or disappointments. Some are more forceful than others. When we receive the hit and label it as “bad” or “negative” we lose the opportunity to grow. If we receive the hit and look at it as a “gift” we can open up to the possibility to change a pattern, belief, behavior or relationship in our life that is no longer serving us. We are empowered by this wake-up-call to act in a way that improves our health and wholeness thus embracing the pain or challenge for what it is…an opportunity.