confidence

4 Ways Your Darkest Moment Can Positively Change Your Life

I will never forget the moment that I woke up in a hospital bed the morning after I tried to take my own life. At the age of 26 years old my marriage had ended and along with it the non profit organization that I had worked so passionately for was pulled from under me. I didn’t want to live.

After a seven year relationship my wife had walked out of the door never to return and as I sat in our apartment surrounded by everything we had built together the future looked dark and overwhelming and was certainly not one that I wanted to walk into. I turned to google and keyed in “most painless and quickest way to kill myself”.

I absolutely maintain that my attempt at wiping my existence off the face of the planet was the best thing to happen to me, it totally changed my life. Whether it’s the end of a relationship, the struggle to get a job or an overwhelming sense of hopelessness and lack of direction we all experience “dark times” in life. It is these toughest times that can turn out to be the most profound.

Let me share with you 4 ways that your darkest moments could be the making of your life, should you choose.

Forced self-intimacy

When life takes you to the darkest places absolutely no-one around you can understand how you feel or what you are going through. Others may have had a similar experience but only you can react to your situations the way that you do. During our tough times we are forced to stare ourselves eye-ball to eye-ball, as though we are standing in the mirror and gazing deep into our very soul. As we engage in these moments of forced self-intimacy we make crucial decisions that redefine who we are, what we want and what we are willing to accept or not accept for our lives. It is the choices that we are forced to make, during this darkest period, that lay the foundation of our powerful life change.

Blank canvas opportunity

We absolutely take life for granted, trying to end my life was my awakening moment to this truth. I truly recognised with my head and my heart that we live life once and so I made a decision to view my life as a blank canvas, to start again and paint whatever picture I so desired for my life. The result was that I created an eco-island business in Fiji that gained worldwide media attention, was filmed for 18 months and became a TV show that aired in the UK, Australia and America. My darkest moment became my catalyst to pursuing life in all it’s fullness and as a result I embarked upon a crazy adventure.

Benchmarked experience

When we experience a powerful life situation and nothing could feel as though it could get any worse we have then built a foundation of experience on which to build the rest of our lives. Nothing could be any worse than trying to take your own life and so I launched a bold and daring business idea – if I went bankrupt it could never be as bad as non-existence. The tough times that we endure give us a place to refer to and offer the motivation to continue. When we realised that we endure ‘X’, ‘X’ was pretty bad and as we are still more than standing we are filled with the hope that we can get through the smaller battles of today.

A moment of awakening.

There are times in our lives when everything gets on top of us and as a result we make decisions for our lives that are not healthy nor the best – wrong relationships, poor choices in patterns of behaviour, developing addictions and more. Friends and loved ones may tell us we are on a destructive path but we don’t listen as it is a path that brings us comfort at this time. I truly believe that there are times in our lives that we are given a place to breakdown. It is through this breaking down experience do we undergo a powerful transformation of letting go of the bad and the unhealthy as we undergo a moment of awakening and rebuild ourselves, who we are, what we are about and everything that we stand for, from the ground up. These are the powerful moments of awakening.

During my darkest moment in my life, the only person who truly knew what I was going through was Google, it may be the same for you. Right now, in this very moment, it’s just me and you. I want to encourage you to not simply endure this difficult situation but to grab it by the horns, to wrestle it to the ground and overcome. As you do I truly know that you will look back and be able to say that this moment, right now, was the best thing that every happened to you. I believe in you.

Mark Bowness is a life change instigator who is building a community of people who are dedicated to changing their life, changing their community and changing the world. Mark produces a whole wealth of resources to enable you to instigate your life change. The best place to start is his FREE Life Change Toolkit which includes a 5 day e-course entitled ‘How to change absolutely anything in your life’ click here to register.

  • http://tangiblefreedom.com/ Ragnar

    Life change instigator.. that’s an awesome title. I wish I had thought of that! I agree.. there’s a lot to take away from your darkest moment in life. I especially enjoy the fact that I managed to crawl out of that place.

    I’m still not at the point where I can look back and say that it was the best thing that ever happened to me, but I am definitely making progress towards that point.

    • http://www.markbowness.com/ Mark Bowness

      Ragnar, thank’s for the comment dude. Title – yeah I love that…. it took me a while to come up with that.

      Good work on getting out of your darkest moment. I am totally confident that one day you will look back and be able to say ‘ahhh that’s what that was for!’ – I believe it!

  • http://cashwithatrueconscience.com/rbblog Ryan Biddulph

    Hi Mark,

    So happy you are back with us buddy :) I have been through some dark times, and can say, these moments defined me. These moments helped me go on creative tears, write 1000 inspirational quotes, travel the world.

    Much of my greatness, or just,um, coolness, to be humble ;), was borne of darkness. Just the way it is.

    Blessings and thank you deeply for sharing your story Mark :)

    Ryan

    • http://www.markbowness.com/ Mark Bowness

      Hey man, thank you so much for your comment and contribution. I love the fact that through your dark moments came inspiration, fantastic – this is true of my life also.

      I also like your additional comment about humility. When we actually realise how precious life is then we are forced into a place of humility as we stand in awe at ‘life’

      I really like your site dude, awesome to inspire people to get money in a positive way. I shall be following.

  • http://www.leadingedgeadvocate.com/ Lea

    When it rains, it pours and when you’re going thru it it can seem infinite. Mark, I’m glad you got thru it and learned from it.

    ~Lea

    • Anders Hasselstrøm

      Nice one Lea :o)

    • http://www.markbowness.com/ Mark Bowness

      Thank’s for this great wisdom Lea :-)

  • SJ

    Mark,

    Glad you got through your personal tough times and learned and grew from it. It is great that not only have you gotten past it, but that you are using your experiences to teach and help others. Bravo.

    -SJ

    • http://www.markbowness.com/ Mark Bowness

      SJ, thank you so much for your comment – really appreciate it. My darkest moments forced me to evaluate my core values – one of those values is impact. It’s a real honour to help those who are going through similar experiences and to show them that their life is powerful, beautiful and purposeful.

  • Lori Gosselin

    Hi Mark,

    The feeling of hopeless is something that we all experience at some point in our lives. I like this: ” grab it by the horns, to wrestle it to the ground and overcome”. It reminds me of a quote from the old TV show Fame – “Life is like a bear – you either eat the bear or the bear eats you.” When you’re down it’s then when you need to remember to fight your way back. Unfortunately, that’s the time when it’s hardest to fight. Good for you making something valuable out of this!
    Lori

    • http://www.markbowness.com/ Mark Bowness

      Thank you for your comments Lori, I appreciate your input. I like that fame quote – I think it’s so true. When it’s hard to fight, fight harder. Good will always come out. Thank you for your contribution!

  • Bethany @ Journey to Ithaca

    Wow, thank you for sharing that. I’ve recently gone through my own “dark night of the soul” this past winter, and I, too, found it to be a transformative experience. It’s hard to see it when we’re experiencing it, but it’s easy to see what a remarkable time it is after the fact.

    Here’s a post about my winter: http://myjourneytoithaca.wordpress.com/2013/10/14/lesson-2-love-is-the-only-thing-that-is-real/

    • http://www.markbowness.com/ Mark Bowness

      Bethany thank you for sharing your experience – what a great blog, I will certainly be following!

  • Buzygurl

    Needed this today :0)

    • http://www.markbowness.com/ Mark Bowness

      Glad to help :-)

  • Jon Chrysler Sr.

    Mark,
    Wow! I’m glad you made it through. I read this cause a friend posted it on Fbook and my wife is going through a low and dark valley. I’m trying to learn and understand so that I can help in any way possible. Thanks for your openness to share from your heart. If you have any other info or sites that you could recommend I would be very grateful.
    ~ JoRo

    • http://www.markbowness.com/ Mark Bowness

      Jon, thank you for your message. Do follow the link to my site in the blog post as I know that my free resources can help you and your wife through this time. I hope that all is well with her and I trust that as you go through this dark time together a seriously huge bright light will be at the end of the tunnel and will signal a new chapter of your lives together. Stay strong my friend!

  • Danny Chee

    Hi Mark,

    Thanks for sharing with us your experience. It is an inspiring and optimistic piece for people like me who are going through rough patches in life. Cheers

    • http://www.markbowness.com/ Mark Bowness

      Thanks Danny. I am confident that your rough patch is just that, a patch, a patch that will make you bigger and stronger and that will take your life in an incredible direction. Believe it brother – Mark

  • Joseph Dabon

    Wow! And I thought I had problems – http://withinyouisyoursuccess.com/?p=304

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100001306884464 Eli J. Pacheco

    The tough times can be our springboard, but when momentum is down to zero, it has to come from within. Your story inspires. Thank you for sharing.

    • http://www.markbowness.com/ Mark Bowness

      Eli – wise words, thank you for your comment and pleased that you are inspired!

  • http://www.intentionalwealthinstitute.org/ Kevin Doherty

    The areas of life that cause us the most struggle and pain are exactly where we have the most opportunity to reclaim our power and build more depth in our character.

    • http://www.markbowness.com/ Mark Bowness

      Kevin, nicely and succinctly said, thank you!

  • aditya

    thank u sir for this wonderfull inspiration…..!..all our dreams can come true if we have the courage to pursue them!…i am going through a real bad time…..truely broken..but after reading this…i feel i have a long a way to go!

    • http://www.markbowness.com/ Mark Bowness

      Aditya – you have a long way to go. I hope your situation becomes more positive soon and I know that this will be the beginning of a new adventure for you. Stay strong!

  • kiowa

    Thanks for sharing your experience with us! Your testimonial inspires me and I hope I will be able to feel better in a near future.

    • http://www.markbowness.com/ Mark Bowness

      Kiowa – not a problem, thank you for taking the time to post a comment!

  • Claire

    I needed this today!
    At 26 I am strongly identifying with your 26 year old self.
    I have to start my whole life over again in a situation I did not choose.
    I have been trying to view it as a new beginning and a gift – ‘now I can do as I like’ and so on.
    I am sure you appreciate that adopting this viewpoint is not always easy to begin with.
    Thank you for helping me see that new beginnings can be wonderful plants that bear the most inviting fruits, should they be properly pruned and cultivated.
    I hear a lot of talk about this, but see so few examples.
    Thank you for being one, and openly discussing it.
    It has been of great use and comfort to me.

    • http://www.markbowness.com/ Mark Bowness

      Claire – thank you so much for sharing your story. I do appreciate that it is not always easy initially, however, after you go through a dark time, it’s necessary to find the motivation to ensure that you change your situation. No matter how hard it takes.

      I am very excited about your life. As, out of great pain comes great wisdom which results in the potential to do amazing things! Please do contact me on the link in the blog above and let me know how you are doing!

  • http://www.suzieqsolutions.com/ Suzanne Jones

    It is because of my darkness, mistakes and misunderstandings that has allowed me to easily do what I do now. I am very relatable because I have thought, felt or experienced much of what needs healing today. Darkness is a blessing although it is hard to see it that way when we’re in it.
    Glad everything turned around for you and keep sharing your message :)

    • Mark_Bowness

      Suzanne, I think that’s a great comment to make. You are totally right, the depth of experience that we go through during a painful period offers the ability for us to gain transformational empathy and insight. Thank you so much for this contribution. Mark