“We have to accept the pain and burn it as fuel for our journey.” ~ Kenji Miyazawa
It seems that 2020 has proven to many of us that adversity is inevitable and that some are able to thrive in tough times, while others seem to have a hard time getting out of bed in the morning. Those who demonstrate genuine resilience find ways not only to navigate the murky waters of uncertainty, but rather to turn adversity into opportunity. They see it as an essential fuel for the journey of life.
That’s not to say that resilient people don’t feel the same emotions when a tragedy strikes. To be human is to suffer. But people with more courage in their bank accounts of mental strength take stock of their reality, quickly weigh options, create a plan, and commit to the path forward. Instead of engaging in the tedious – and emotionally draining – activity of remaining in despair.
If you’re looking for some life tips, or even simple reminders, to find ways to turn adversity into opportunity, read on!
1 – Kiss him.
The first and best way to start fighting any ambush is to embrace your current reality instead of denying it or retreating into your comfort zone. When life knocks you down hard, find the root cause, embrace it, and lean on. This is the first step in your battle plan.
2 – Practice self-compassion.
We all go through difficult times at some point in our lives. But we often fail to show empathy for ourselves when you’re in distress. If you want to overcome adversity faster, once you’ve embraced it, the next step is to be more compassionate with yourself. In doing so, you will improve your emotional well-being and give yourself the confidence to uplift yourself and keep moving forward.
3 – Control your emotions.
Emotional intelligence is essential for maintaining self-discipline. If you don’t control your emotions, your emotions will dominate you. The best way to become master of your emotions is to start experiencing your emotions on a physical level. Notice what happens when you are triggered by something or someone and make a mental note of what emotions arise. Being aware of yourself and naming your emotions are effective ways to reduce the power of your feelings.
4 – Make humor your ally.
Laughing in the face of adversity can be a powerful tool to reframe your narrative. Of course, this may not be an option or appropriate depending on the severity of the situation. This is not to discredit your pain. Rather, it’s about harnessing positive emotions when you need them most. Studies show that in the face of adversity, going through life with a positive attitude helps you become more flexible in your thinking and problem solving.
5 – Engage in wellness activities.
Mental and physical wellness activities such as meditation, exercise, and eating a healthy diet help reduce stress and clear your mind. With a clear mind, we make better decisions based less on negative emotions and more on rational thinking. And … well … it’s good for you!
6 – Purge the clutter.
Adversity also provides us with a great opportunity to purge clutter from our lives, such as unnecessary activities unrelated to our values and goals, stupid things we think we cherish, things we waste money on, and even people who don’t have our best interests in mind. So throw your bags away and move on. You will not regret it.
7 – Be grateful.
Has life thrown you a curve ball? Good! Use it as an opportunity to grow and gain a new perspective. Showing gratitude for your struggles defuses their impact and transforms the mind – moving from the paralysis of “why me?” Analysis. To action-oriented execution.
8 – Develop a growth mindset.
People who are able to overcome challenges with grace possess a growth mindset. They choose the mindset of a champion. They don’t believe their intelligence is frozen. Instead, they face challenges, persist in failures, view effort as the path to mastery, and learn from feedback. Adversity of any kind can be very difficult to overcome. No one wants to go through hardships in life. However, if you have never experienced pain, you will never understand peace.
9 – Hold on to your goal.
Or find a new one. Purpose and passion are necessary weapons for the battlefield of life. They further fuel the necessary emotional connection with desired goals and outcomes. Sometimes things are beyond your control, and it can take your breath away. But if you are working towards something meaningful to you, you will always find a way forward.
10 – Stay confident in your abilities.
People who are recovering from adversity start by believing that they can find a way forward. If you are feeling hopeless and helpless, you are unlikely to find a way to be successful. Be prepared to take advantage of your talents – or maybe even develop new skills – then to know you will crush this challenge and many more to come.
11 – Think and move forward.
There is a huge difference between thinking and living. Reflection is done with intention. He has a purpose. When adversity strikes, do the following: (1) embrace your reality, (2) do it in one direction, and (6) move forward with conviction.
Difficult times give you the chance to change course, reinvent yourself, or find an unfamiliar bridge that will allow you to overcome obstacles. Napoleon Hill, author of You have to think to get rich, formulated it as follows: “Each test carries with it an equivalent or greater benefit. The real secret to success is the ability to accept adversity as a chance to change ourselves and our situation. Likewise, my new book, Embrace the Suck: The Navy SEAL Path to Extraordinary Life (with a preface by David Goggins) emphasizes the importance of embracing pain and suffering in order to live a more meaningful and motivated life. In chaos, there is always an opportunity.
So go for it!