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‘How the Worst things that can happen to you can turn out to be the Best’ Guest Post By Michelle du Toit

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Your Story is a series by WonderfulWomen where you will read inspiring Guest Posts from women around the world. Here they share their experiences, stories and things that matter most to all women.

Today’s Guest Post is by  Michelle du Toit from romanticexplorers.com. She is the founder and romantic travel blogger behind the Romantic Explorers Community & Directory.  Being entrepreneurs, Michelle, and her husband work long hours but are mindful to take time out as needed to nurture their marriage by traveling together!

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‘How the Worst things that can happen to you can turn out to be the Best’ Guest Post By Michelle du Toit

 

How the worst things that can happen to you

can turn out to be the best

How would you feel if someone told you today that in the next few years of your life, you would:

> Get fired unexpectedly from a job you loved

> End up paralyzed in the hospital

> Slide your car down a hill into the abyss at night by accident

My guess is you’d feel pretty terrified and really unlucky.

You might at the time of reading this be going through something similar or worse, trying to make sense of it and feeling broken or defeated. Unfortunately, while it happens to you and sometimes long after, it feels like nothing can take the emotional struggle away or make you feel better.

However, after having survived all three of the terrifying incidences I’ve listed above and more, I’ve started seeing a pattern and discovered a surprising revelation:

Each time I managed to get through the lowest times in my life where I felt hopeless, my life had improved significantly.

Those bad scenarios we sometimes have to go through in life, are where the MAGIC of finding our true selves and our purpose can lie.

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I’ve noticed it’s precisely at that point when we are genuinely feeling broken, lost, vulnerable and helpless that we often have more time than ever to pay attention to our own thoughts and dreams.  We live in such busy times, it is rare to have the time to really think things through or to reach valuable insights about our lives.

When we are unwell and unable to work, we can be stuck with nothing to do but question ourselves and how it all came to this.  It seems the answers that come to us then are the ones that can guide us towards our true purpose.

Here’s how the following terrible experiences changed my life for the better in this way:

> Got fired unexpectedly from a job I loved

I was devastated when I was given the awful news that the company I had been working for decided to fire me without warning.

Being fired in a small industry made me feel I had a bad reputation and needed to change my career path which wasn’t easy. I changed career paths many times since then which sometimes made me feel like a lost failure.  Was I just severely lacking direction and wasting years of my life pursuing so many different things?

Whenever I felt down about anything for a long time after that, the thought of being a failure in my career haunted me too.  Until one day I realized, I don’t have to feel like that about my unpredictable career path anymore.

All of that general experience in many industries has shaped me into becoming the resilient and resourceful entrepreneur that I am now full time – I had just been too busy to notice it earlier. Changing careers doesn’t have to be a bad thing and the road to success isn’t straight.

‘How the Worst things that can happen to you can turn out to be the Best’ Guest Post By Michelle du Toit

                                                                    The path to success isn’t always straight.

                                    Location: Nobbies Boardwalk, Phillip Island. ©RomanticExplorers.com

> Ended up paralyzed in the hospital

While driving home from work one day, I got a foot cramp which changed into a numb feeling that spread over my body fast. It was terrifying because wherever the numbness went, my body parts became paralyzed.  When the ambulance found me I was half unconscious, thinking I was dying and realizing I could be crippled for the rest of my life.

I was lucky I made it through that day. For the next two weeks, I struggled to do basic tasks, and that was hard to accept as a go-getter.  I found myself looking back at photos of holidays my husband and I enjoyed together before we spent too much time working on our businesses. We were overdue for a break. My body was sending me a clear message: It was time to admit I needed more work-life balance. Time to realize that my health and my relationship had been suffering tremendously with my busy lifestyle.

I learned the hard way I need to take much more time off to nurture myself and my marriage. It compelled me to start a Facebook group whereby I could encourage other couples to do the same. I called the group Romantic Explorers – a place where couples that enjoy exploring locally or traveling globally could share and find recommendations for romantic hotels, restaurants, things to do, date ideas and more.

Years later, due to the surprising amount of recommendations that have been shared, the Romantic Explorers Community Directory was born. The directory will soon allow anyone to share and find the top community-voted romantic recommendations around them using their mobile or PC.

I believe the ordeal has led me to finally finding my true calling of reigniting romance in a world where a lot of people think it is dead.

‘How the Worst things that can happen to you can turn out to be the Best’ Guest Post By Michelle du Toit

                    It’s important to take time out of our busy lives, to nurture ourselves and our relationships.

                                         Location: Nobbies Boardwalk, Phillip Island. ©RomanticExplorers.com

> Slid my car down a hill into the abyss at night by accident

Not knowing if I was flying off a cliff or was going to die during the worst moments of the accident left me traumatized for days.

Luckily my car hit a fence pole on the way down which stopped it from falling further. I sustained only minor injuries, but emotionally and mentally I felt damaged.

I lacked clarity in my thinking for a few days, struggled to form sentences or talk fluently. One of the worst things about this situation was not knowing when or if I would feel myself again. I’m blessed to say, I recovered fully after a week, but it all reminded me that life can indeed be over in an instant.

It changed my perspective and enriched my life in surprising ways. I’m much more aware of the beauty that surrounds me and filled with a heightened sense of appreciation.

There’s so much beauty in the world for those who make time to see it.

Here’s hoping that you will also find the answers you seek in the even the misfortunes you might face if you aren’t already.

Looking back, can you see yet how situations that seemed terrible at a certain point in your life may have led you to greater things?

Feel free to share your findings in the comments below!

Connect with Michelle

Her Blog romanticexplorers.com

Facebook facebook.com/groups/RomanticExplorers

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Comments (6)

  • nayana 1 month ago Reply

    It’s very sad when the family has to suffer. But happy to hear you fought your way back. Be positive always.

  • Kirstie 1 month ago Reply

    Oh wow! You have made it through alot! But it is so true! Your darkest times can change your life in the best of ways!!

  • Jennifer 1 month ago Reply

    Thank you so much for sharing your story. I’m so glad you’re okay, ending up paralyzed in the hospital sounds terrifying. I am a strong believer that we are given hardships so that we can appreciate life more.

    Michelle du Toit 1 month ago Reply

    Hi Jennifer, thank you so much for taking the time to say hello and share your thoughts! I agree, hardships sure have a way to make us better people if we let it.

  • Natasha 1 month ago Reply

    I absolutely believe in finding the silver lining, as it were. My dad died unexpectedly three years ago. I was on literally the opposite side of the world and my husband was on deployment on a submarine so he was completely unavailable for help/support for the next four months. I certainly wish my dad were still alive, but I also know that many good things have happened that wouldn’t have occurred if he were still alive.

    Michelle du Toit 1 month ago Reply

    Hi Natasha, so sorry to hear about your dad – losing mine is still something I can’t even imagine going through so I feel for you. Good to hear that many good things have happened since though and that you can find some positive in the ordeal x Best wishes.

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