• Kylie van Gelder

When Life Gives You Lemons, Squeeze the Shit Out of Them and Add Vodka

Ok there's also syrup in a lemon martini and it's lemon zest, but the point is to make something good out of a bad situation.

In life we're going to be given some lemons - some crappy deals that have us wondering if the entire Universe is against us. It's our choice what we do with the bad situation.


You can wallow in your own self-pity. Cool, your choice. Or you can put on your big pants and say "Screw this, I'm going to grow from this shit!"


I'm talking about those situations like red lights when you're late for work, or your computer crashing in the middle of sending off that important report or a stone (beech) marten chewing through the electric cables in your car at night. This is actually a thing where I live.


It's your choice how you respond. Do you lose your mind and scream at the poor kid walking by on his way to school or do you breathe, step back and say "Awesome, guess I'm taking the day off?"


Life is 10% what happens to you and 90% how you respond to it.

- Lou Holtz


We're given all sorts of opportunities to readjust how we respond to life's little unwelcome gifts.


When you notice yourself flipping out at the smallest of things, ask yourself "Why the hell does this make me so mad?" Then write it down, or journal about it.


There are also life lessons in the form of really horrendous situations (in some situations, there are no answers and you may need extra support or counselling).For example, when my husband and I were trying to have children. Everyone we knew was planning their pregnancy like they were buying a new car. We want to be pregnant by the summer. And poof my girlfriends would be knocked up.


Us on the other hand, we spent over 5 years and had 5 miscarriages before our first little miracle arrived.


Now I could have lost it forever, and I'm not saying I didn't lose it sometimes. I totally did. But instead of stopping, pitching a tent and staying for way too long, I started asking myself things like "How am I changing because of this experience?"


How can I turn this majorly lemon of a situation into a place where I can grow? Because I knew if I didn't, I would be walking around as depressed as could be with my lifeless children dying inside of me one after the other.


This is basically what we have to do. We have to look at the bad stuff and ask ourselves questions like:


  • What can I learn from this?

  • Why is this making me feel so unbelievably peeved? Like the crashing computer incident.

  • How can I look at this from a place of love instead of fear?

  • Is there a chance I'll look back on this as a true turning point in my life?

Once you've done some digging and maybe decided to dabble in more personal growth, look at what you do have in your life that you can be grateful for. You breathe. You have a mattress to sleep on. You have a car that can be chewed by a scary little beast. You have food. You can see. You can speak. You have a phone with internet and access to an abundance of information at the push of a button. You're alive!


We're given these amazing lives, so instead of staggering through yours, try squeezing the most out of your experiences. You never know, you might learn something, or at the very least to add a little lemon to your vodka!

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