Sometimes it seems like nothing is going right. You don’t get the job you wanted. Your partner breaks up with you. You accidentally flush your cell phone down the toilet.

All in the same day.

A story starts running through your head, mostly consisting of thoughts like “Why me?” “Why is the universe out to get me?” and “Why doesn’t anything ever go my way?”

It’s important to realize that you are at a very important crossroads during these times. It’s a crossroads that each of us faces every moment of the day – but it becomes particularly pronounced during tough times.

You, my friend, have an amazing opportunity to choose love over fear. @BethanyButzer
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You can choose to believe that everyone is out to get you and that more bad luck is right around the corner. Or you can choose to believe that, in some way that you don’t completely understand, you are being loved, supported, and held by the universe. You are being guided through situations and events that are for your highest good.

It might seem hard to believe, but you are always being supported by the universe, even when this “support” doesn’t feel like support at the time.

Maybe you’re experiencing a break up so that you can face and overcome your own demons. Maybe you didn’t get that job because there’s a better opportunity on the way. Maybe you flushed your phone down the toilet because you desperately need a break from technology.

Here’s an example. A little over a year ago, my husband and I had to evict tenants from a house that we’d decided to rent out. It was our first home, and we’d loved and cherished it. The tenants had created thousands of dollars in damage, so my husband had to spend six weeks back home in Canada to renovate and sell the place. I stayed in Boston, feeling terribly stressed and lonely. We couldn’t afford to rent our place in Boston and continue to pay our mortgage back home, so it was essential that we sell the house quickly. On top of this, both of my husband’s parents were struggling with serious illnesses, and he was doing his best to care for them at the same time. Then, a few days before my husband was scheduled to come back to Boston, his mother passed away.

At the time, we were both stressed to the max and wondering why all of these terrible things kept happening. However now, looking back, we realize that if we hadn’t had terrible tenants and needed to sell our house, my husband wouldn’t have spent six weeks with his mother before she passed away. He wouldn’t even have been in the same country during her passing. In time, we also realized that selling our house was a blessing in disguise. We were able to pay off a lot of debt – and now we have a level of freedom that allows us to make exciting decisions about what to do next.

Another example involves the recent passing of my cat, Chloe. She died very unexpectedly, and I was crushed. However I can also see that there was a blessing in her passing. She would not have enjoyed the transition and change involved in the adventures that are coming next for me. And as much as I miss her, I can see how not having her around gives me a level of freedom that I didn’t have before. Sometimes, when the universe strips you bare, it’s actually a gift.

You can probably think of examples like this from your own life. Situations that felt excruciatingly difficult at the time, but when you look back you realize that these were periods of immense personal growth that carried sweet, unnoticed blessings.

The trick, I believe, is to try to see the beauty in difficult times while they are happening, instead of only realizing their importance in hindsight.

This is what I’m trying to do right now. In June and July my husband and I are taking a two month sabbatical to go live in the woods. We have exciting things planned for August – however for some reason obstacles keep getting in our way. Strange logistical issues keep popping up that are jeopardizing our ability to do what we want to do when we want to do it.

Instead of asking myself, “Why us?” “Why can’t this situation just be easy and flow?” I’m trying to trust that the universe is supporting me, and that everything will work out with perfect timing. Things might not happen in the exact order and on the exact dates that I want them to, but they will happen in a way that is for my highest good – even if I can’t see that right now.

Here is what I’d like you to do. Think of a situation that’s really stressing you out or getting you down. Then try to find the hidden blessing. It might be something small – but it will be immensely meaningful.

How is the universe supporting you today? I’d love to hear from you in the comments below!

Bethany Butzer, Ph.D. is an author, speaker, researcher, and yoga teacher who helps people create a life they love. Check out her book, The Antidepressant Antidote, follow her on Facebook and Twitter, and join her whole-self health revolution.

If you’d like tips on how to create a life you love, plus some personal instruction from Bethany, check out her online course, Creating A Life You Love: Find Your Passion, Live Your Purpose and Create Financial Freedom.

Image courtesy of Blair Fraser.