May 212012
 
Every Cloud Has A Silver Lining by Siddhi

When something bad happens, it can seem like the end of the world. This is likelier to be the case when we are emotionally involved in a high stakes situation. Here, the pressure to succeed and avoid failure becomes immense. Every setback is a disaster, every mistake catastrophic. In such cases, it is tempting to focus on difficulties and make them bigger than they really are. It is easy to imagine the worst and to despair because things seem impossible in our minds. But is this really the case?

The Hunt for the Silver Lining

In truth, every cloud has a silver lining, every catastrophe a hidden blessing. But such insights are rarely obvious to the naked eye. The key is to be able to spot the good in the midst of the bad. You must be able to see the hidden opportunities amidst adversity. To complicate matters, you must be able to do this in spite of the immense pressure you may face. Only then will you be able to turn misfortune into good fortune.

But before you can do anything, you must first master your thoughts. You must not allow your doubts and fears to cripple you. This will only affect your ability to see possibilities, make good choices and take decisive action.

Instead, you must discipline yourself to look for the silver lining. You must focus on finding the solution even if it is easier to despair and give up. This is the only way to turn misfortune around and triumph! How then do you go about finding this silver lining?

Duck Rabbit Illusion by Wikipedia

How to See the Silver Lining in the Clouds

1. Remember Your Motivations

Looking for a silver lining in the midst of adversity is tough. When the odds are great, it is easier to give up than to persevere. This is why you must have iron willpower. You must believe that you will find a way to turn things around even if the situation seems bleak.

To do so, remember your motivations. What are your goals and purpose? Why do you fight? Who are the people you cannot let down? Why must you persevere? Having clear answers to these questions ensures that you have the right mindset to see the good in a bad situation and triumph against the odds!

2. Try Different Perspectives

Often it helps to see things from different perspectives. We are so used to behaving or seeing things in a certain way that it is hard to think from a different angle. Imagine for a moment then that you are not you. For instance, if Steve Jobs were in your shoes, how would he view the situation? Would he see things the same way you do? What opportunities do you think he could find? How would he choose to handle the situation using the skills, knowledge and resources you have?

Try seeing things from the perspective of the people you respect and admire. You could also try seeing things from the perspective of your favourite fictional characters. The key is to take on a perspective that is not your own. You might just be able to see the silver lining if you view things from a different angle.

3. Reframe Your Perception of Events

What your mind can conceive and believe, you can achieve. When you face an unfavourable situation, challenge yourself to reframe the way you perceive events. Instead of seeing only the bad, try to see the good as well. Ask yourself, what are five positive aspects of a bad situation for which you can be grateful? Also, challenge yourself to see at least five different ways to deal with the issue.

It may be hard to see the good in the bad at first. But with constant practice, it should come naturally to you. With time, instead of panic and despair, you will be able to face any crisis with calm and composure. The silver lining, which may not be apparent to others, becomes clear to you. This makes all the difference in being able to turn misfortune into good fortune.

4. Nourish Your Creativity Constantly

Nourish your creativity constantly. Whether it is reading widely, problem solving, self-expression or any other forms of the creative process, take time to be creative. Doing so strengthens your intuition and gives you insights when you need them the most. With vast stores of ideas and knowledge to draw upon, the silver lining in the clouds will be clearer to you. You will then be able to find the answers you need to resolve any challenge you face.

Taking Action

How do you manage setbacks, mistakes and failure? What other ways can you think of to see the silver lining in the clouds? Do share your thoughts and comments below! :)

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  12 Responses to “How to See the Silver Lining in the Clouds”

  1. Hello Irving,

    So here is my synopsis of your keys to finding the silver lining in my words:

    1.Clarity
    2. Expanding our minds and getting out of our comfort zones
    3. Gratitude
    4. Introspection

    I manage change in the ways you describe – with a positive attitude and a perspective of learning – it’s interesting because my current blog post is on Love Simply Is…. and I approach it with Loving myself.

    So to add to your list – I add the word “LOVE” By the way, great post!

    In gratitude,
    Nancy
    Nancy Shields recently posted..LOVE SIMPLY IS….My Profile

    • Hi Nancy,

      Yeap you summed up my points nicely.

      I agree with you. Love is a great way to see the silver lining in the clouds as well.

      Thank you for sharing your lovely comments! :)

  2. Vizier, thanks for this does of inspiration today. I think you reference this above in your points, but trying to understand the lessons you are being taught is also something worth doing. Like asking yourself what is this experience teaching me in life? And what are the positive lessons I’ve learnt? Usually not immediately while experiencing a dramatic or traumatic event, but months sometimes years later I can reflect on the past and appreciate the lessons learnt.

    There are people who see the silver lining in every situation. I was once complaining about traffic and a friend told me it was good because we could talk more while traveling. Oh brother, I thought to myself, but she was right.
    Vishnu recently posted..Anything that delays action is resistance.My Profile

    • Hi Vishnu,

      I am glad you found it inspiring.

      Yeah. Looking at events that happen as lessons which we can learn from makes it likelier that we will see the silver lining in the clouds. No doubt it maybe hard to reflect when we are going through a traumatic event, but at a later time when things are more settled, it will do us a lot of good in moving on.

      Haha! We all could use friends who can see the silver lining in the clouds. They are likelier to help us find the solution we need to problems. You are lucky to have such a friend!

      Thank you for sharing your lovely comments! :)

  3. My mental frame of mind needs a great deal of nourishment. Not that it is in dire straits, but because I find the pace of today to be most overwhelming at times. Luckily, for me, only takes small steps such as stepping back. I find going to the beach and looking at the waves to do wonders. I listen to a recording of waves when I have difficulty going to sleep because of the chattering going on inside my mind.

    When I step back, I am able to see the situation in a different light… and the silver lining shows itself. It usually does not happen all at once, sometimes it is a gradual happening.

    • Hi Barbara,

      I think we all need proper nourishment for our minds from time to time.

      It is good that you realize the pace of today is overwhelming. Many people do not realize this and keep pushing themselves until it is too late and they have breakdowns of all sorts.

      It would do us good to step back occasionally to catch our breathes and recharge. When we are fully rested, we are likelier to see things in a different light as you say and see the silver lining in the clouds.

      Thank you for sharing your lovely comments! :)

  4. Reframing is the key for me. I find that the dark cloud is often a story I’m telling myself. The story becomes my reality. When I back up and question the story, I can often find the silver lining.
    Galen Pearl recently posted..Ever SmallerMy Profile

    • Hi Galen,

      Yes. The dark cloud can be stories we keep telling ourselves that are not true.

      If we do not question these stories especially when they affect major choices we have to make, we might end up making poor choices will will affect our lives in dreadful ways.

      Thank you for sharing your lovely comments! :)

  5. Such an inspirational article! I really like your point on focusing on finding the solution. I totally agree with you, every bad happening has got its brighter side, we only have to find or discover it. Sometimes, the only way to find the solution of a bad situation is, if we step out of our comfort zones and switch our views, to find that wanted solution.
    Peter recently posted..Die zeitgenössische organische ArchitekturMy Profile

    • Hi Peter,

      I am glad you found my article inspirational!

      There is always a solution to any misfortune. If there isn’t we will just have to make one.

      In truth, the only way to deal with misfortune is to take action. Otherwise, there is no way things will get better on its own.

      Thank you for sharing your lovely comments! :)

  6. All great tips, Irving. Our attitude has everything to do with our successes and failures in life, and our words have
    everything to do with our attitude.Finding the silver lining has everything to do with the Self-Talk we train ourselves to use.
    It is correct to say that the source of our success is always inside of us.
    It’s never the world that creates our successes and failures, but rather, it’s the words we use within ourself,
    while looking at the world, that determine whether we will succeed or fail.

    • Hi Rob,

      I agree. Our attitude determines our success or failure in life.

      And our self-talk affects our attitude, so it is important to monitor it closely.

      Thankfully, we can change our self-talk to lift us up when it is holding us down. It all starts with being aware and taking the steps needed to deal with it.

      Thank you for sharing your lovely comments! :)

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