Every event, good or bad, is an opportunity to grow. When Bad things happen, embrace it.

"I don't believe the devil, I don't believe his book, but the truth is not the same without the lies he made up" ~ God Part II, U2

I am playing with fire these days, perhaps the element is stronger in me at this time and I seek it. We've crossed the threshold from our watery old soul Pieces to the child like, enthusiastic Aries who often dives in deep, walks on fire, swallows glass before thinking of any consequences. So I just celebrated a birthday, reaching mid-forty isn't easy. I was talking with another mom the other day who also with all her Aries chattiness suggested, or rather told me, to simply embrace my age. She is right, and so I am.

While I was feeling bad about turning mid-forty, It was an opportunity to defy it, look young, be healthy and take measures to keep it that way. I cleared out my spare room and turned it into a sanctuary where I intend to go each morning and evening for solitude, introspection and meditation. A few minutes of yoga and stretch will also be very beneficial.

My first self appointed session in the quiet of my new space kept gearing my mind to face all the bad small stuff as well as large stuff I had gone through the past few years. Instinctively cursing those moments - Why? WHY!! Then the serenity around me, the early morning twitting of the birds, the fresh light drizzle and cool breeze from the open window shifted my brain; and I remembered a lesson I was taught once upon a stroll down Ventura Boulevard and into my Kabbala class.

1. When facing difficult situations - when bad things happen - acknowledge that its from the Light "
2. Identify your reaction.
3. Stop reacting, breath and allow the Light to come in.
4. Deal with your situation as an opportunity to resist.

There is always an opponent out there, testing us, trying us, causing us to stumble, the "devil"? There is no doubt we often feel there is an opponent out there, but it is there to offer opportunity to resist reaction. For example, you're in the express line at the grocery store and you see the cashier taking her sweet time, the person before you has more than 15 items, and you know cause you counted. Reaction?

Pissed, impatient, frustrated, an intensity builds inside, you're stressed cause you're in a hurry.

Stop, consider this minor moment of frustration as an opportunity to resist these obvious reactions, recognize these negative feelings and shift your mind: "so you have extra time to chill, do some deep breathing, glance at the magazines on the rack, strike a conversation with the person in line, you know, the one with more than 15 items, she or he most likely will be a delightful person to talk to, maybe stretch your toes (that feels good) ... use the time as a chance to slow down and be mindful.

I have put this attitude to practice many times, it works! My stress level reduces, and in that moment I become a happier, calmer person. So don't sweat the small stuff, the "devil" is the opponent, and the truth is the opponent is every undesirable situation that shows up testing you, pushing your button in places you need change. Change comes when you resist... don't react, and be pro-active by seeing it all as a great opportunity to grow.

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