Life can be hard sometimes, where it looks as if life challenges just keep coming. It seems every time you think the latest crises is over, along comes the next. When every letter you open, or telephone call you receive is bearing more bad news.
When will it ever stop?
In truth, when you make it stop.
Either you are going to curl up under the sheets of your bed feeling beaten, or are you going to face up to your challenges head on, finding solutions no matter how hard that may be.
“Our greatest glory is not in never failing, but in rising up every time we fail.” Ralph Waldo Emerson
We all know that life isn’t simple and that throughout our life’s journey we may face numerous life challenges, problems and setbacks.
The difference between those who succeed in life and those who don’t is their ability to face up to these life challenges in the right way.
The good news is, no matter which one you face– life challenges, a setback, roadblock, or defeat–you don’t have to raise your hand and surrender.
Your mistake more often than not is to surrender to your life challenges. The emotions that you feel as you face whatever the problem is will normally be one of fear, anger, anxiety, worry, concern … defeat. This is what is crippling you. Preventing you from dealing with the challenge.
While it’s understandable to feel these negative emotions, they won’t help you get wherever it is you want to go. Worse yet, they can even stop you dead in your tracks.
“Life is not always perfect. Like a road, it has many bends, ups and down, but that’s its beauty.” Amit Ray
Stand your ground!
Whether we like it or not, adversity is part of life. Overcoming adversity is one of the biggest hurdles we face.
As difficult as adversity can be, it also can be a catalyst for moving life forward.
Not a man or woman who has achieved anything has done it without facing defeat.
One of the most famous quotes in the personal development, self-help world is from Thomas Edison, the guy who created the light bulb, who said “I have not failed. I’ve just found 10000 ways that won’t work,” or something like that.
You have to confront adversity head-on. There is always light at the end of the tunnel, as long as you keep looking forward.
Look, I have had to deal with many life challenges. Some I dealt with badly, I really let them get to me, stopped me in my tracks and I struggled to bounce back. In fact I let them depower me, in a way I allowed my self-pity to get the better of me, and this kept me from responding in any positive way.
Others I dealt with in the right way. I focused on what I had to do to overcome the challenges refusing to let it get the better of me.
“That which does not kill you doesn’t always make stronger.” Sorry Nietzsche
The key in my mind, and from my experiences, when faced with life challenges, is to hunt for new opportunities. Whatever it is that you have to face up to, face it with your eyes forward where you accept what has happened but respond with a new approach to solve the challenges you face.
You need to look at every possibility and every angle for solving the problem. Always be alert to new ideas and opportunities that you can try.
As Bruce Lee stated; ‘Be like water making its way through cracks. Do not be assertive, but adjust to the object, and you shall find a way around or through it.’
The Taoists have a concept called ‘Wu Wei’ which means ‘not doing’. But the deeper meaning, is being calm. In the moment. Still. Like water.
Calm and then strike. Deal with your crises, control yourself, and put your energy in finding the solution. Although it’s going to be difficult at first, the worry will still be there of whatever the life challenge is, but your strength, persistence and determination can see you through.
You need to be like the water. Building on that concept, water will crash, erode, or seep into crevices until it can find its way through any obstacle, so like water there are probably multiple solutions to every one of the life challenges that come your way. Always look for new possibilities and opportunities and you will surely find your way forward.
When it comes to these life challenges, it’s your attitude and approach, the way you cope, the way you respond, that determines whether you manage to move forward.
“If one dream should fall and break into a thousand pieces, never be afraid to pick one of those pieces up and begin again.” Flavia Weed
Learning to deal with and overcoming your life challenges is what builds character and resilience, and will probably be the foundation to your success.
When you can face your life challenges acting rationally and keeping your goals at the front of your mind this will serve to enable you to withstand and endure the trials and tests of any adversity to which we are all vulnerable throughout our lives.
How have you dealt with obstacles or failures in the past? What might help you in the future?
“The most beautiful people we have known are those who have known defeat, known suffering, known struggle, known loss, and have found their way out of the depths. These persons have an appreciation, a sensitivity, and an understanding of life that fills them with compassion, gentleness, and a deep loving concern. Beautiful people do not just happen.” Elisabeth Kübler-Ross
photo credit: Asian Development Bank Damage from the Asian Tsunami of 26 December 2004 via photopin (license)