We all have a unique journey ahead of us. We all have a different way to learn and to absorb the experiences we have along our journey. For instance, I can be standing in front of the Grand Canyon and have you standing next to me, and we both will have a completely different experience, view, and perception of it. Why is that? Because we absorb what we are looking for. We search for different things to fill us up. I can even go again to visit the Grand Canyon (one year later) and my experience and perception can still be different from the one I had before. The same happens with adversity. We all experience it differently.
Based on the definition I found in Google, adversity is an “adverse or unfavorable fortune or fate; a condition marked by misfortune, calamity, or distress. An adverse or unfortunate event or circumstance.” In short, adversity is an unfortunate event or experience. However, even though we get to endure an unfavorable experience, we can gain so much from it as well. I believe that we get to build our strength and our character when we are faced with adverse moments. We are the ones who decide how to see these difficult experiences. We decide if we absorb the negativity of it all or if we find the lessons along the journey in order to grow in knowledge and strength.
It is inevitable to avoid adversity in our life, and it is also impossible to be able to predict it. Life is constantly surprising us with good and bad experiences. It depends on us and on how we react to adverse times; we get to choose to make things more difficult or to learn from the experience. For example, if you lose your job, you will for sure experience distress and multiple concerns as you cannot provide for yourself and/or your family. It is indeed an unfortunate event! In spite of it, you get to choose how you will react to the situation. You can either choose to dwell on the loss or act into learning from the experience and into searching for another job. You can even transform this misfortune into an opportunity to pursue a new career or new business endeavor. Your choice will determine your future results; these can be positive results or even a greater adversity.
Now, emotionally speaking, there are situations of adversity that can extremely affect our emotional state. An example of this is losing a loved one, because of the person’s passing. But to make it more adverse, the death of this loved one was unexpected and was an extremely tragic event. We often get to question ourselves: “Why this had to happen to my loved one? Why do God allow these types of misfortunes? Why me? Why him/her?” All of these are normal human questions. I have made them myself in multiple occasions… I have lost loved ones tragically too. However, I always get to a dead end as far of this way of thinking. Nobody will ever provide me an answer for these questions. There are things we don’t have the capacity or the logic to understand; but they still happen. They hurt. Certain losses can truly break us and bring us down. But I decided to see things differently. If I focus on the misfortune, I will suffer and I won’t have answers to these questions, but if I focus on my history and the time I was able to spend with my loved one, I am able to be appreciative of having that person in my life. I can smile again and relive moments, more in depth and from my memories. I can decide to be more appreciative with the people I still have in my life and build many happy moments now for me and for them. There is something that will always be inevitable and that is that we will all leave this world one day…we will all die. It doesn’t matter how or when, what matters is what we leave behind in people’s hearts and the memories we build. With the experience of pain, adversity, and loss I decided to choose appreciation on the NOW rather than dwell on the sadness of the loss. It is not always easy, it doesn’t take away the feelings of loss and sadness, but it adds value to the relationship I had with the person I lost, and it can serve as a lesson for me to add value to the relationships I currently have.
Adversity will always be there in our lives. It is inevitable. But don’t focus on seeing things in the worse way. Don’t settle to attach yourself to the losses or the pain. Instead, try to change the perspective and find peace with every experience. Look for the lessons. Look for growth and improvement. Become more appreciative of the things you have NOW and treasure the beautiful moments from the past. You have the power to allow adversity to take you into a dark place or transform the darkness into appreciation; into love; into growth. Falling is normal, we will all fall, and we’ll fall MANY times along our journey in this life, but it is up to us if we stay down or if we wish to learn and become a stronger, as well as becoming a better version of ourselves, by transforming the adversity into an experience of growth.