Updated: May 19, 2019
DISCLAIMER: This is not a post or recipe on how to make Lemonade.
They say when life throws you Lemons, you make Lemonade. (Lemonade in this context refers to making the best out of every hard situation. And the Lemonade is the beautiful end result that came from that difficult thing or situation). But let's be honest, how many people even know how to make Lemonade (the metaphorical type)? And at times we are too focused on the end result (Lemonade) that we fail to appreciate the journey (the process of making it).
The truth of the matter is that the beauty of hard times isn't always in the end. It is in the process. The process of making Lemonade. So to answer the question;
How Do you Make Lemonade?
What does it mean to make Lemonade? What is the process you have to go through to get to that beautiful ending we metaphorically refer to as "Lemonade"?
1) Learn How to Manage Difficult Seasons
You need to learn how to handle difficult seasons. It's easy to just want to get up and quit on challenging seasons. It could be financial hardships, relationship-wise, terrible job, string of disappointments and closed doors, etc, whatever it is, you can't just get up and say you're done. You have to ask yourself this question; What is this season trying to teach me? What can i learn from this difficult season? How can i grow from this?
I've been in difficult seasons and i realized that the main patterns i saw was God trying to prune me of bad friends and influences. The more i went through, the more people showed their true colors. Some seasons i realized God was trying to build character in me because in that moment, i had lost myself a little. Sometimes, it was learning how to manage my finances, controlling my emotions and learning not to rely solely on my feelings, learning to love myself, etc. For you it could be anything. Ask God what He is trying to teach you in that season, what He needs you to learn, and the lessons you can take away from this season.
This is a growing experience. It is not about life being unfair to you, it is about you learning valuable lessons you'll need later on in life (trust me on this one).
It's not you choosing to focus on how difficult life is in that season, it's about what you can get out of it. And many times, once the lesson is learned or you got what you needed to get from that season, you move on to another season. It's like a class. You pass, you move ahead. You fail, you stay behind.
2) Learn How to Manage Frustrating Situations and the Curve Balls Life Throws at You
Life is full of surprises. Everything won't always go as planned. There will be a lot of unpleasant surprises and curve balls thrown at you and you have to learn how to manage those situations properly if you are to grow. Maybe you expected to get a promotion at your job but your co-worker who you're not very fond of gets it instead of you. How do you react? Do you fuss and throw a temper tantrum about how they don't deserve it and you deserved it more because of A, B, and, C, etc. Or you get yourself together and find a way to be okay and carry on with your life? I'm not saying don't get angry? I'm saying don't pitch a tent and live there permanently. Find a brighter side, e.g, "at least i still have a job," etc.
Or perhaps your life didn't go the way you planned and everyone else's seems to be going just great. Are you going to play the victim and feel sorry for yourself or suck it up and choose to see the good things you still got going on? It's all about that silver lining.
It's not about dwelling on the negatives, it's about skating around them and finding a way to keep living your live the best way you can. It's not letting it dominate your life, but choosing to still be happy and joyful INSPITE of what is happening around you. It's also knowing that everything won't always go according to your plan and still be okay when things fall apart.
Remember, the Devil knows your triggers. If he knows that curve balls ruin your whole day, month, year, etc, he'll keep throwing them at you to ruin your every mood and God will let him because He wants you to learn not to be triggered by every little thing.
3) Learn Character
Learning character isn't always easy but it is an essential part of our growth as humans. Sometimes those "Lemons" are thrown to build up character in you. Maybe there is someone in your life that you can't stand but have to be around them or work with them constantly and all you will want is for them to just disappear out of your life forever but maybe God planted them right next to you because He wants you to learn tolerance.
Tolerance of other people's differences, other people's personalities that aren't like yours, other people's lifestyles and habits that are different from yours, etc. Maybe He wants you to learn patience, maybe He wants you to learn how to be content with being alone (some people can't go two days without being in a relationship and that is truly sad), learning how to CHOOSE to be happy no matter what, learning how to be kind to people that aren't kind to you, learning how to create good habits that enrich your life and those around, etc.
These Lemons thrown at you should produce character in you. Character is like Sugar or the Sweetener. Without the sweetener, the Lemonade is just plain old sour water.
At this moment, we are not requesting for sour water, we want Lemonade. Build your character. Let those Lemons bring out the good that is buried in you.
Allow Room for Trial and Error
While you are learning how to make Lemonade, know that there'll be plenty of mistakes and short comings. When you are trying to make something for the first time, maybe trying a new recipe, trying to learn a new sport, language, etc, there will be lots of mistakes and you won't necessarily get it right on the first try.
So when you try the first time and you fail or stumble, dust yourself up and try again until you get the desired results. Keep trying until you look right, sound right, and act right.
Learning how to make Lemonade is all about the steps and efforts you put to see the positive side out of every negative. It is the process you put in to still be an amazing version of yourself despite the hard situations you may be facing. It is choosing to be okay with the unknown and unexpected and choosing to remain in a healthy mental state even though your life may be falling apart.
But most importantly, it is the process of life squeezing you in order to bring out the good that is in you.
And after a while, these Lemons (hard times), slowly come to an end. And we have to take the squeezed Lemons, seeds, and everything else not useful and discard them and what we are left with is Lemonade (the beautiful end product).
Now how that Lemonade tastes, is completely up to you and what you did/put in during the cooking process. If you put it good things, you get good out, and vice versa.
Don't just stand there and let those Lemons hit you on the head. Pick them up and learn how to make good Lemonade. The World is thirsty and waiting to drink from your Lemonade.