Monday, December 12, 2011

The Outcome is always greater than what you go through

Today, I got a call from a dear Sister/Friend. I could tell from her tone that things had been a bit rough. She asked me how my year had been and I shared some of what we’d been through and then without taking a breath, I told her that we were grateful. I am still on a high from my daughter’s recovery and even though she has some tough days, she is still smiling and laughing. Yesterday, I admonished her for something or other (Doesn’t admonish sound so much better than yelling?) and she looked at me and said “Come on old lady, bring it.” I laughed until I forgot what I thought needed to be corrected.

As I push through my own wellness goals and those for my daughter, I know what is required of me; discipline, constant learning a removal of distractions, gratitude and staying focused on what is TRUE, and a lot of laughter. This is not always easy, but the outcome is always better than what you go through.

Think of something you’ve achieved. Now, think of how hard it was to get there. Chances are getting there was extremely tough, but somehow, it doesn’t feel like it right now. Once we have achieved our goals we get the sense that the journey wasn’t so hard. But when you are in the midst of it, you think you’ll never make it.

When I was working on my doctoral degree, I felt like I would never make it. I lived in Kent, Ohio where it can be extremely cold. I had no car and very little money. I worked hard and always seemed to be behind in my work and I thought I’d never get through. But when I look back at those years, I remember laughing with colleagues about jokes that only a sociologist would get. I remember listening  live jazz, reggae and classical concerts that were free or almost. I recall folks dropping by to share a meal and study for comprehensive exams, and helping friends train for body building competitions, choreographing their routines, dieting for competition and then eating free donuts from Palcho’s the minute the completion was over.

The mind is a rather complex tool. Our memory of an event is often shaped by where we are in life at the time we think about it. A relationship can seem horrible, until you leave the person and you see how good the relationship was. An old car can seem like a piece of junk, until you get a new one and suddenly acquire monthly payments.

·         Look at a difficult situation in your life and imagine the desired outcome.

·         Think back on something that was difficult while you went through it and marvel at how far you’ve come.

·         Design a plan for just today based on what you’d like your outcome to be.

·         Breathe deeply and give thanks.

Life’s trials are ----trying, but they are temporary. But even your present day struggles will one day seem like joy.

Bertice Berry, PhD


  1. Fantastic information. Congratulations again on the classroom dedication.

  2. I just love you Bertice! Thank you for your beautiful wisdom and generosity. I love reading and learning from you.

    Karin T.