Carol the Coach: Find Meaning And Purpose In Your Life

Are you one of those people that have wondered why bad things seem to happen in your life? Have you experienced a divorce, or had a sick child, and wondered why this has happened to you?  It is not unusual to have those kinds of thoughts and want to “lick your wounds.” When obstacles seem great it can be easy to go into a self-pity mode but that takes away your power.  As difficult times arise …  it is important to feel your pain and then move forward to ask yourself how you can grow from it. 

All the great philosophers say that true transformation requires suffering. The more you experience suffering the more likely you are to grow. There is a term called post–traumatic growth which means that suffering elicits great growth in your life. This means that you should look for great meaning in your life and to make a difference in the lives of others!

Most women would admit that when bad things happen to them they feel fear anxiety, stress, and anger which typically turns into depression. When these feelings become overwhelming, it can lead to post-traumatic stress disorder. The good news about PTG is that it offers an opportunity to think about the world differently and reassess one’s life. It allows one to move beyond the sadness and betrayal and look for opportunities for meaning and purpose.

I have worked with clients including a mother who lost her adult son to heroine and as a result she created a foundation to fight chemical addiction. I have a friend who lost her best friend to cancer and has made it her mission to raise money for the Susan G. Komen foundation. I have worked with a woman who was horribly betrayed by her husband’s sexual addiction and after she experienced the pain and betrayal, she decided to create a specialized group for women who had experienced the same betrayal bond. As you can see these women turned their trauma into something positive and are contributing to the world.

Where do you find your support? Is it from healthy friends, a mental health therapist, a support group or institutions like your church or synagogue. It can often take 2 to 5 years to get through the trauma but that’s when the good stuff happens.

Support and quiet time are crucial to taking your life to the next level.  Spend time reflecting on why this happened to you and use your quiet time to spiritually to reflect on how you might use this to give your life meaning?  Have you had those moments when you had actually thought of ways to make a difference in your own life and in the life of others because of your past pain?

It is never too late to spend time reflecting and contemplating how you can make meaning out of the chaos that has occurred in your life. You will need to stop the busyness of your day and find time to listen to your intuition so that you can decide how you can contribute to the world in ways that manifest your greatness.

Homework assignment:
Spend some time thinking about the worst thing that has ever happened in your life. Ask yourself what you might do to transform meaning out of the trauma and then find yourself a support network to make that change happen.
You really were born for greatness and you can use post traumatic growth to actualize your potential! 

Carol Juergensen Sheets, LCSW PCC is a psychotherapist and personal life coach. SHe does motivational speaking and empowerment trainings locally and nationally. To find out more about her services, contact her at or call her at 317-218-3479. You can watch Carol the Coach segments on WTHR's Channel 13 Wednesdays at 12:50PM.