Updated: Jan 24, 2020
"We develop our character muscles by overcoming challenges and obstacles." - Stephen Covey
Feel like giving up? Does it seem like every time you gain momentum on your goal, you run into an obstacle? Have you ever thought, "Why can't things be easy? Why is life so hard?" You are not alone. Every person has felt this way at one time.
The reason there are hard times in life is that it is life. Plain and simple, you can not have good times without bad times in life. There are peaks and valleys to every aspect of life. If there were not any tough times, you would not notice or appreciate the easy times.
It is when we persevere and come out the outside of the challenge that we become stronger. We grow as human beings when we are challenged in life. If you want to build up muscle, you have to put the muscle under pressure, work it hard, push through the pain to build the muscle. You do not become physically strong by sitting on the couch all day eating fast food. It is the same for our character. We become stronger and more resilient when we overcome our obstacles. With each hardship we overcome, we become more confident in our abilities to handle the next ones that will show up in the future.
Have you known someone who has led a comfortable life? Perhaps they had helicopter parents who coddled them too much, doing everything for them. What happens to this person when they get into the real world, and it knocks them down? They struggle to get back up and push through the hardship. Their resiliency muscles are weak because they never needed to use them before. Their self-esteem suffers a blow, due to they have not proven to themselves that they are capable of overcoming challenges.
Compare this situation to a person who has developed resiliency muscles as they grew up. Maybe, they worked through high school and college or grew up in a less than ideal home life. As a result, they have grown as a person and are stronger for their challenges. This person had proven to themselves time and again that they were capable of overcoming challenges life threw at them. As a result, they had self-confidence and insight into the ups and downs of life.
If there are always going be obstacles in life, why are we also so surprised when we come into hard times in our own lives?
I don't know about you, but I have wasted weeks and months wallowing in the fact that "things aren't going my way," instead of facing the problem and taking action to make it better.
Let's face it. The pity party you are throwing for yourself is not going to change one thing about your situation. What do you have to gain by giving up when life gets hard?
The only thing that will bring change is ACCEPTANCE and ACTION.
ACCEPT that this challenge is the fact of life (today). When you accept the lemons life has given you, you can stop complaining about them. When you are no longer wasting energy on complaining about the situation, then you have the power to focus on solving the problem. Whining about what is will never change anything. When you put the spotlight on what's not going your way, you risk digging yourself into a negative mindset. Nothing good comes out of being in a negative mindset.
Take ACTION in doing what you can to overcome the obstacle. Every time you take action, you will feel in control and stronger. Taking action will strengthen your confidence and self-esteem. Prove to yourself that you can work your way out of a tight spot. If you don't know what steps to take, start by trying anything. Have you ever heard the expression, "Throw everything, including the kitchen sink at it,"? Any action is better than nothing. Eventually, you will discover something that is working.
When you overcome your challenge you will look back with pride. Because you will know that you are strong and capable.