worksheet 2: Life Perspectives

Sometimes when life is difficult, we tend to reminisce about the past and wonder if our lives would be better now if we had taken a different route. But each new day is a clean slate and fresh opportunity to begin again. The concept of repentance is that you take a 180◦ turn to face a new direction.

No avenue is guaranteed to bring us the rewards we seek. The truth is that if you had chosen differently, so many other things and people would have been different as well. Hence there is absolutely no telling where you could have been by now.

A famous leader once wrote – “the courage of life is often a less dramatic spectacle than courage of a final moment; but it is no less a magnificent mixture of triumph and tragedy.[1]

Life is about change. Accepting change is not always easy as it is often accompanied by the loss of things which we feel make our life worthwhile. We are all ‘works in progress’ and we allow growth in our lives when we nurture a ‘growth’ as opposed to a ‘fixed’ mind-set.

 An Italian woman applied to the Dignitas clinic for assisted suicide and was granted medical assistance to do so on the basis that she had lost her good looks which had left her depressed. [2]

What have you lost in your life which makes the future seem impossible without it?

In the New Testament, there is a helpful tool for guiding our thoughts – “Whatsoever things are true, noble, just…if there be any virtue, if there be any praise, think on these things.” (Philippians 4:8)

Do you have a framework for your thoughts, or do you allow any thoughts to take up residence in your mind?

If some situation is causing you undue anxiety or discomfort, there are three basic options at your disposal:

  • how can you get out of it?
  • how can you make the best of a bad situation?
  • how can you ensure you never get yourself into that situation again?

These are empowering thoughts which energise rather than paralyse you.

Which of these options do you think might be helpful to apply to your situation?

Simplifying our lives involves internal and external de-cluttering. There may be things you are doing which are simply feeding your despair. Do you need to chuck the magazines or turn off the news?

Consider the underlying messages in most lifestyle magazines:

You are not good enough as you are’

‘You need to buy this product to be happy or complete’.

Can you think of any more which may have influenced your thinking?

Instead of giving up on life, there are things we would do well to give up – long-held attachments to things which are effectively killing us whether they be:

  • Perceptions
  • Ideologies
  • Relationships
  • Lifestyles

 Is there anything you would like to add to this list or specify in each of the categories which may be relevant to you?


[1] John Fitzgerald Kennedy

[2] Hannah Roberts, “Italian woman loses her life at Swiss euthanasia clinic because she was upset about losing her looks,” Daily Mail (London, England), Accessed  February 20, 2014.