Finding Hope at the Bottom of Pandora's Box


We’ve all experienced the ecstasy of thinking were on the path to personal and professional success, only to have an obstacle drop into our journey and cause a major roadblock. What can you do when you unexpectedly hit a wall and find yourself staring into a seemingly dark empty box?

We know from Greek mythology the story of Pandora's box. According to the legend, Pandora was the first woman on Earth, created by Zeus. She was endowed by the Gods, graced with beauty, talent and eloquent speech. As a gift she was given a box which contained all the evils of the World and was ordered not to open it. However, her curiosity got the best of her and she lifted the lid. Suddenly, the contents of the entire box spilled out into her World…. or so Pandora thought.

The lesson regarding Pandora's Box refers to getting yourself into a helpless situation, one in which you ultimately have very little control. But what happens when we are not the one opening the box? When obstacles we can’t control are placed in our path?

The answer is one and the same: You just have to look closely through the darkness into the bottom of the box. There you will find Hope, just like Pandora found. Her box was not totally empty although it appeared to be at first.

In situations such as these it is important to use positive energy to retain the inner belief that change can and will occur. Remain proactive in your own life and do not hesitate to reach out to people in your network. Remember that you are surrounded by good people who want to help. They just need to know that you need help.

What can you do if you have a friend or colleague who is experiencing doubt or hopelessness in a situation? While there is no one correct answer, there are many ways to lend a helping hand. The best form of support comes from offering your companionship. In doing so, it is important to listen and remaining nonjudgmental. Providing validation to the situation at hand will foster a sense of acceptance for the person in distress. Through personal acceptance, a balanced perspective can evidence itself more readily, leading to greatly effective problem solving strategies.

Offer your support without expectation. Helping your friend or colleague back onto a clear path will be the reward itself. In the words of Brian Tracy, “Successful people are always looking for opportunities to help others. Unsuccessful people are always asking ‘What’s in it for me?’

If you are on the receiving end of the support, be grateful but never be guilty. Most of us have been recipients of support in the workplace or at home and would be more than willing to pay it forward.

In the end, put the lid back on the box, step around the obstacle blocking your path and continue forward on your journey to success. You might even find a few friendly faces walking along side of you.

Photo Credit: Carl Gandolfo Photography. Follow Carl @https://www.facebook.com/CarlGandolfoPhotography/


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