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6 Epic Lessons You Can Learn From Serious Adversity

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At different stages of our life, we are all going to face some sort of serious adversity whether we like it or not. The adversity will come when you least expect it so knowing how to deal with it is key. To be able to deal with adversity you need some strong references and an understanding of the advantages – this is what I will give you in this article.

I have gone through many adversities in my life and each time one happens, I use previous experiences to be able to deal with them. The strange thing for me now is that I actually love adversity. It’s a sign from the universe that things are about to go really well for me.

When your life gets tough what are you going to do about it? Are you going to spend all your time sulking and focusing on what’s wrong or are you going to build a bridge and get over it? It’s this decision that will determine your success.

I can promise you that if you learn how to deal with adversity then not only can you help yourself, you can serve others in a way you have never done so before. You can become that shining light that everyone want’s to be around. You can achieve levels of human endurance that have never been achieved before.

You can change the world with a new idea or a new technology. Don’t be afraid of adversity, welcome it, understand it and know that everything in your life is temporary. Work on yourself, work on your mind and start to develop a new set of beliefs that are going to empower you when you are faced with adversity.

So let’s get into it. Here are six epic lessons you can learn from serious adversity.

 

1. You’re about to rise up from nothing

Up until this point, you may have been just barely getting through life and not really knowing what your purpose is. When adversity hits (and I mean serious adversity) everything changes in a single moment. Suddenly you stop forgetting about how your hair looks or what you are having for lunch.

Suddenly you are forced into survival mode and the mental patterns that you have learned over the years are disrupted. Adversity is the best thing that has ever happened in your life. It means that you are going to rise up because you will be forced to become stronger.

No longer will you just drift through life because adversity will make you rethink everything you have done to date. It will make you ask yourself what your purpose really is. It will make you ask yourself whether you are really happy.

If the answer to both of these questions is not what you hoped for, that’s okay because you now have an opportunity to change it. You now have some space in your life as you deal with adversity to come up with another strategy for how you want to live going forward.

Know this, if you allow adversity to empower you, and you take the positives from it, you will rise up amongst everyone else like you never have before. You will walk, talk and act in an empowering way. You will achieve your purpose and your goals, and it will be all thanks to your new friend adversity!

 

2. Until now things were too safe

One of the reasons I believe adversity comes into our lives is because it’s a sign that things were too safe. Without some sort of difficult situation, the fact is that you’re not going to change, and you are going to keep doing what is comfortable.

The world wants more from you yet you have been ignoring the signs, so hopefully adversity is your new wake up call.

“Being comfortable will never allow you to live your wildest dreams, and you will just waste this one chance at human life that you have been given”

Stop kidding yourself about what you have done before; it’s not the most that you can possibly achieve! Let adversity allow you another chance to do what you do and go up another level.

 

3. You deserve better

Depending on the type of adversity you face, often we can realise that we deserve better than what we were accomplishing before. Sometimes it is really hard to know if there is something better out there for you because all have known up until now is what you have already got.

The brilliance of adversity is that it makes you think to yourself that you deserve better and that you don’t want your life to reflect the tragedy or pain that the adversity has given you. Sobbing for an extended period of time is not going to get you what you want. You deserve better so stand up tall, visualise what you want and go get it!

 

4. What the adversity means will shape you

If you break adversity down into what it really does at the most basic level, it allows you to change the meaning of the difficult situation, and of your life, at the same time. This is a double-edged sword because you can either get major benefits or serious downsides.

The outcome will come down to one very important thing, what the adversity means to you and how you interpret it. By looking at it from a positive lens, it can shape you for the better. It can be the catalyst for you deciding to do something new or starting a new business.

The challenge is that seeing the good from adversity can be quite hard to do. Just remember that if you see adversity as a bad thing then you will only have pain to deal with. You don’t want pain do you? Great, so then you only have one choice and the decision has already been made for you.

This adversity is the best thing that has ever happened to you, and you are going to do amazing things with the new opportunities it presents – trust me.

 

5. You can’t change it, but you can learn from it

There is another important lesson to learn from adversity; you can’t change it. No matter how hard you try the adversity has happened and it can’t be erased. Arnold Schwarzenegger is not going to come from nowhere and throw a grenade at it for you.

So given that there is no way to stop the adversity from happening, the only thing you can do is learn from it. In very difficult situations, the lessons you can learn are far greater than the lessons you will learn from normal everyday situations.

While you still need everyday lessons too, the lessons you get from adversity are far greater and have the potential to massively change the way you are, and your future results. By looking at any great startup success story, almost always, there was some type of adversity that sparked the decision to start a business. Maybe adversity is the push you need to get into action.

 

6. It’s time to re-focus and do what matters to you

Adversity is a forced way for you to refocus. You have no choice but to change what you are currently doing. Often distractions will stop you from staying focused on what you love doing. When you face a serious adversity, you often take a break from work to deal with it.

It’s during this crucial break time that you get a chance to breathe and think about the adversity or person involved in the adversity. Your brain will spend time recalibrating itself, and the neural pathways will change in some way if you let them.

During this downtime, you need to spend time thinking about what matters to you. Chances are the adversity is going to help you do this anyway but just make sure you’re conscious of it. If during this time you discover that what matters to you the most has been neglected, then that’s a great lesson, because you now have the chance to rectify that going forward.

Each day, if you are not doing what matters to you the most, then you will be very unhappy, and that’s no way to live this one life you have been given.

“Don’t think about the time you have lost, but instead, think about the time you have now gained thanks to this opportunity to refocus”

You were put on this planet for a reason, and adversity is only going to help you live your purpose and take charge of your life once and for all. Assuming you got this lesson from adversity, no longer will you wake up late and be uninspired or settle for second best ever again – you’re too important to the world!

 

***Final Thought***

I hope this article has helped you see some of the lessons adversity can give you. From now on I hope that you will look forward to adversity and know that there is a change coming. It’s a big one, and only the bold like you can face it, and overcome it.

Don’t ever let others tell you that this adversity means your life is going to be worse than before – they are wrong, and you’re smarter than that. During this difficult time, go back to the basics of self-development and you will have all the tools you need. Tools like visualising, looking at your beliefs, setting your goals, consuming empowering content and just taking a break, will serve you well.

My buddy Joel Brown has been dealing with some adversity recently and showing immense resilience, so show him some love on his Facebook or Twitter pages by leaving him a comment.

Tim is best known as a long-time contributor on Addicted2Success. Tim's content has been shared millions of times and he has written multiple viral posts all around personal development and entrepreneurship.You can connect with Tim through his website www.timdenning.net

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6 Comments

6 Comments

  1. Toño

    Dec 24, 2015 at 5:21 pm

    Introduction to this atricle is just excellent, I remember reading it some time ago and today I decided to get back to it once again.

    For some strange reason I can say I actually enjoy adversity myself, and it feels rather sacry sometimes, because of the strength it can provide if you can, so to speak, traslate it right. This summer I burned my legs to the point I wasn’t able to walk for a week. The pain was out of this world really, the most terrible physical feeling I ever had, but it did change my mind and I saw different perspective of life and things I took for granted.

    Despite all the pain, there was a moment when all my fears, doubts and even my ‘little’ depression have gove and I felt happiness inside. It was an unusual way to clear my mind but it actually helped. I realized I do not want to die (at that point I thought I quite might) and neither I will enjoy an opportunity to lose my both legs. I realized I want to enjoy the life, my family and experience all the things I haven’t yet. And when I couldn’t go for a walk with my sister and dogs I realized how cool it is to just be able go outside and breathe that fresh air!

    Thus so called ‘terrible’ experience often come to our life to remind we have a life to live & enjoy, and time is the most valuable currency we have.

    Right now I’m going through different, huge emotional pain that happens at my job, and I feel like I cannot escape it and just have to surrender. Not sure if I can get through, but what I am certain if I can, I will greatly benefit from it. Just need to find a fuel to go forward and make the best out of it.

    Thank you so much, Tim, for this peace of help, I appreciate your time and your desire to share your experience with us. Today I felt like I did a wrong decision, but thanks to you now I can turn it into the right one, as you said, to shape me for the better, instead of punishing myself learn from it.

    My apology for quite long response, stay well and have a great day!

    • Tim Denning

      Dec 30, 2015 at 1:30 am

      Toño glad you like the article. I have also burned myself before too and the pain is unbearable. Don’t apologize for the long response it means that you are trying to share something valuable. I am sure your job will get better so don’t despair. Who knows, maybe it will inspire you to start your own business and add value to others instead?

  2. Julio Zurita

    Dec 5, 2015 at 6:21 pm

    Tim I would like to thank you for this amazing article it really inspire me a great deal thank you so much

    • Tim Denning

      Dec 6, 2015 at 1:48 am

      No problem Julio I am glad it gave you some inspiration!

  3. Evan

    Dec 5, 2015 at 5:35 pm

    Tim!

    This was the most relevant and timely article for me right now, and the best one I’ve read from you man!

    Thank you for the awesome advice. You’re right about the reactions, adversity is like the past; the only way we can change it is by changing how we feel about it.

    Lately I’ve been going through some of the hardest struggles I’ve faced so far as an entrepreneur. I’ve made sure to refocus my priorities onto all the things I’m thankful for and remind myself daily what I’m working for and who I’m becoming.

    No struggle no strength!

    • Tim Denning

      Dec 6, 2015 at 1:48 am

      Glad you got something from it Evan and all the best with your entrepreneurial endevours!

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It’s pretty annoying isn’t it? All those great and accomplished people telling you that FAILURE is a necessity on your way to success. Yeah, that’s easy for them to say; they’re already ‘on the other side’! You on the other hand, are still struggling all day everyday to get your business lifted off the ground and are really not that sure if you’re indeed going to make it.

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1. Stop Denying You Feel Like A Failure

Telling yourself things are going great when they’re not is one of the biggest, though most useless, coping mechanisms human beings deploy in rough times. Common denial signals among entrepreneurs: trying to regain more control by working even more hours and on the other side compensating this by letting go of all this control by partying and drinking way too hard.

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2. Stop Making It Bigger Than it Really Is

This is one of those other ‘fun’ things human beings do; we blow things way out of proportion in our heads! In business, when you lose that big client you’ve been working on for weeks, it feels like it’s the end of the world. You start doubting yourself, your strategy, your entire business model right up to the point where you barely sleep because you’re working on pivoting the whole thing.

But what if that customer simply didn’t have the money to go for your service anyway? Or what if they just decided to go for someone who is cheaper but who offers less quality? Does that mean there’s something wrong with YOU? Or that this was the ONLY customer out there and that you’re now doomed forever?

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Well, here’s the truth: you ARE special! But…it’s just not very likely that you’re one of those – very very rare – entrepreneurial superstars that – seemingly – just added some hot water and got instant business success as a result.

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No matter who you ask – a business mentor or coach, a befriended entrepreneur – someone with a neutral perspective on you and our business will be very likely to see what’s going on with a lot more clarity than you can and can guide you to a place that will feel a whole lot more comfortable.

6. Stop Being Afraid Of Failure

I know, I know, you’ve heard this a million times before and you wouldn’t be in this pickle if you could do this. Right? I’m right there with ya!

But, if you get really rational about it, what’s the worst that could happen?

  • You might have to get a ‘real’ job for a while and start over on the side;
  • You might not be able to afford your rent anymore…but with Airbnb on the 1 hand and couchsurfing on the other, you should be able to work it out somehow;
  • You’ll have all the more experience to start over a whole lot faster;
  • You’ll be no less respected by anyone because it’s clear you gave it your all;
  • In a few years, when you’re an established and supersuccessful entrepreneur you’ll also have a cool failure story to tell;
  • None of your limbs will fall off;

Now that’s not too bad for a plan B is it? Failure is such a negative word. And the associated feeling is terrible and numbing. But really…how is giving it your all and not succeeding really the same as failing? Shouldn’t the definition of failure not be along the lines of ‘not even trying’ or ‘giving up when it gets hard’?

In other words: stop beating yourself up over this!

There’s really no need to feel like a failure at all because you’re sticking your neck out, you’re trying to make a difference and you’re still moving upward on that treacherous entrepreneurial mountain.

And that…is what success REALLY is.

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“If you don’t try at anything, you can’t fail… it takes back bone to lead the life you want” – Richard Yates

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“We are all failures – at least the best of us are.” – J.M. Barrie

“Success is stumbling form failure to failure with no loss of enthusiasm” – Winston Churchill

“Don’t let success go to your head and failure to your heart” – Will Smith

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