Hurricane’s are devastating, I grew up in the Hurricane Belt so saw first hand their destruction. It doesn’t matter how many hurricanes you’ve experienced in your life time, each one is different, each one brings it own devastation. Adversity is like a hurricane; destroying anything in it’s path that’s isn’t indestructible. A few weeks ago the southern islands of The Bahamas were hit hard by Hurricane Joaquin, homes were destroyed, roads were partially washed away, schools, airports, and administrative buildings were either severely damaged or destroyed completely. It made me proud to see my fellow Bahamians jump to the call duty and lend assistance the victims of that terrible storm, lending support and soliciting aid to those hardest hit.
“It is through adversity that we are able to see what we’re truly made of. It reveals the truth about who we are, and what we’re made of.”
Your Past or Current State Does NOT Determine Your Future: Failure and circumstances are normal; it’s a part of life, you’re not being singled out, there’s nothing special about you. Everyone at some point has faced adversity and it they haven’t. Sad to say, it’s will come. How you deal with it, is totally up to you. Stopping stressing the past or the future. Focus on the now and what you can do today, keep close your hopes, beliefs and values. See yourself as being the victor. Stay focused on your purpose and vision. Let your dream be bigger than your present circumstances.
I cannot say this enough…… Gratitude begets Gratitude! Focus on what you have control of- your reactions to what’s happening around you, your confidence and attitude. I keep a gratitude journal where I list everything that I’m grateful for and often go back to things I’ve written days, weeks, months prior, just to see how far I’ve progressed. This shows your growth, last year after almost a two-day drive from Belgium, I was grateful for arriving in Scotland safely. Today I was grateful for a blue sky and sunny morning which allowed me to do laundry without threat of rain. Crazy I know, but when you live in a place that has more rain than sunshine, your gratitude shifts. But each day I’m grateful for LIFE! Be grateful for what you do have, not what you don’t.
Persistence beats all! Endure the hardship, refuse to give up, refuse to quit. So often people who didn’t realise how close they were to triumph give up. There is a story about a man who got lost in a forest, he had walked what seemed like miles in a circle before finally giving up. During the night the temperatures dropped, and because he was inadequately dressed, he froze to death. The next morning he was found just behind the forested hedge of the lodge. Had he pushed passed through the fence of trees in front of him, he would’ve found his way out.
There’s Value in Every Circumstance: You have to find the value in your circumstance. Remember a diamond is nothing more than a hunk of coal, that under tremendous pressure, heat, and polishing, has turned into one of the most precious stones on Earth. Every adversity you go through in life, is like that diamond. The pressure and momentary setbacks helps to increase your value. You are not alone, right now someone somewhere is going through the same thing you’re going through. I’m not saying minimize your situation, because even though others may be going through the same thing or maybe dealing with a more extreme situation, yours is unique to you. The lessons learned from your adversity can help others get through their own difficult circumstances. I volunteer at a woman’s group where we each share our stories of adversities and triumphs, those women are just as encouraging to me as I am to them.
Beware Of Your Surroundings: Les Brown says something along the lines of……”If you are the most successful person in your group, you need a new group!” Don’t just surround yourself with people who depend on you; you must also surround yourself with people who can help you during times of difficulty. I’m not talking about using people! I’m talking about setting aside your pride. I’ve learned that in life no one can be a one man band. You were never meant to do everything by yourself. Shutting everyone out and isolating yourself in times of adversity is one of the worst things that you can do. On the same token, stay in a constant state of positivity, remove yourself from people, places and things that drag you into negativity.
Prepare For Battle: Maximise your full potential by encouraging yourself. In your arsenal against adversity, encouragement is your greatest weapon. “One positive thought in the morning can change your entire day!” Take time each day to spend in reflection and meditation with God/the creator/the Universe.
© Etta D. Richards