Skip to main content

Is Adversity a blessing or a Curse?

There's an old adage, that suggests; that which doesn't kill us makes us stronger. I'm not entirely convinced that all trouble and strife is heaven sent to strengthen our resolve and turn us into unconquerable uber-warriors. There is a corollary to this view however. The absence of challenge or difficulty often breeds weakness. Observe the the life outcomes of second and third generation offspring born into wealth and privilege. Often a recipe for mal-content and dysfunction
Adversity and Opportunity, are they two sides of the same coin? Adversity has two subtly different definitions. One is; misfortune, affliction, difficulty, trouble, hardship, distress and so forth. This definition refers to a negative reference point or actual manifestation of strife the sufferer of the adversity endures. It suggests a pervasive and passive state of existence. There is a hint of victimization apparent with this state of being.

The other definition of is; contrary, against, opposed. As in an adverse decision or finding.

If an adversity is viewed through our perception lens as less of an actual state but rather a set back, not to be endured but rather as an uncomfortable but temporary situation, then the attitude starts to change. This can then become a wake up call or feedback barometer that motivates us to look for the lessons that need to be learned in order to progress.

The language used to identify our adversities can define them. Simple words such as desperation, distress, hardship and crisis can become self fulfilling. If however in the face of apparent hopelessness we choose to revert to more empowering descriptions such as setbacks, blips, challenges or temporary hurdles, then the internal strength and resources to move forward become more easily engaged.

Opportunity is the enemy of adversity. The word itself is enervating. It conjures up visions of hope and self control. In the midst of even the greatest personal devastation we have a choice in how we respond. The problem may not evaporate but with an attitude of hope and orientation towards finding some opportunity from the depths of the despair some progress may eventuate.

Adversity is either a fixed state of hopelessness or an opportunity to re-analyze new options. There is nearly always an alternative way to respond to any situation and our ability to redefine the experience is the first step.

A life bereft of opportunity would indeed be cursed. Transient periods of adversity may however be a blessing, the fuel that propels our motivation.

Today's crisis may one day be viewed as the catalyst for greater triumphs to come.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

The Road Less Traveled - Conformity May Be Your Achilles Heel

The tone of this post is wry and gently provocative and not a rallying to call to quit your job, divorce, burn your friendships, or change one iota of your current status quo - not that there's necessarily anything wrong with that!
We are the champions"– so sang Freddie Mercury an eternity ago and the song echoes throughout the great sporting stadiums of the world. It’s rousing and evocative. Evocative of shared triumph – and epitomizing a truly tribal sense of belonging.
There’s a primeval urge that is felt by all reasonably socialized individuals to fit. As rebellious youth we are defiant in our rejection of stereotype. It’s all about the individual, and expressing that unique albeit pompous voice that contradicts the old fashioned social mores and yet….. With an uncanny predictability, each generation ever so subtly morphs into a diluted version of their parents. 100 years ago The Who proclaimed, “I hope I die before I grow old ” and with an irony that is breathtaking, sold t…

Ordinary May Be Overrated!

We live in a culture that increasingly embraces connectivity. The melding of outward disconnection with a simultaneous 24/7 digital conversation is both ironic and mildly disconcerting to those of us not permanently attached to this digital umbilical chord.

Social niceties and courtesies are becoming severely diluted. I recently navigated the labyrinth that is Victoria Station and found myself marveling at the mass commuter hive of activity and yet clinically barren of human interaction.

Each earnest participant on this treadmill journey seemed to be lost almost trance-like in some parallel universe, having engaged some sort of automatic homing device to skilfully navigate the human traffic.
Ipods at full volume, newspaper in one hand, steaming coffee in the other and midst this madding crowd a complete absence of eye contact. 

In this new world it would seem arcane and redundant to distract the herd by smiling, excusing yourself or being so bold as to offer some poor lost soul assistanc…

Why Isn't The Law of Attraction Working for You?

This is a confronting and provocative question. It presumes there’s a gap in your life and that you are in some way failing, falling short of your own expectations.


If The Law of Attraction does indeed work, how then do we explain how bad things happen to good people? How can we explain how the worst of criminals can win the Lottery? Indeed we can question whether this much-quoted Law is in fact a myth.


The point of this article is not to ponder the riddle of this apparent phenomenon or get bogged down in the mire of attempting to define the intangible. Rather I would like to posit the following commentary.


Let’s twist the above question. Imagine that despite your initial reaction to the topic, that you are indeed living the dream, but have failed to realize this fact. Perhaps your appreciation lens is clouded. 
Perhaps you are with your ideal life partner but are blinded to this fact by virtue of your incessant fantasizing of some parallel universe where some Goddess or G…