4 Ways We Can Find Courage Through Times Of Adversity

Published on: December 28, 2013

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Allow The Experience To Pass Through You

“You may encounter many defeats, but you must not be defeated. In fact, it may be necessary to encounter the defeats, so you can know who you are, what you can rise from, how you can still come out of it.” — Maya Angelou

There comes a point in every person’s life when they experience challenging times, counterbalanced by the inability to rise above it. It might be an agonising life lesson such as the death of a loved one or the ending of a romantic relationship. Whatever the situation, it feels close to home and strikes at the essence of human nature. Such experiences test our resolve to withstand the torrents of life. I wish to remind you of your power to transcend any experience life presents you with. I don’t intend this as a passing sentiment to motivate you. Rather, I invite you to embody this understanding at the deepest level.

Reflect on a time when you overcame a tumultuous situation. I’m certain the experience affected you, as though your world fell to pieces? With patience and willingness, perhaps you called upon your inner resources to move through the adversity. In fact, each step we take towards suffering is an invitation to move through our pain. For instance, such events can immobilise some people who cannot navigate their way through it. In other words, our denial in overcoming an experience impedes the flow of life through us. Does this resonate with you? Can you see that resisting an experience causes more pain and suffering that is best devoted to healing the pain? Below are ways to traverse the torrents of life. Remember, your power lies hidden within, ready to be summoned at your time of need. You have survived previous undesirable experiences, and will continue to do so, as long as you allow the experience to pass through you. In other words, don’t go to war with life, as doing so will create more suffering.

“When everything seems to be going against you, remember that the airplane takes off against the wind, not with it.” — Henry Ford

1. Suffering Is Inevitable

Our perception of untoward events highlights the degree to which we suffer. We all suffer at some level, whether it is physical, emotional, or psychological. Every person has their cross to bear. For example, in his book, What I Talk About When I Talk About Running, author Haruki Murakami reminds us: “Pain is inevitable. Suffering is optional.” He is referring to the way in which we internalise our suffering. Therefore, we can reframe what it means to suffer by seeing it as an opportunity to transcend our problems. Expressed differently: instead of asking for things to be easier; we ask to be given the resources to handle what life presents us with.

2. What Is The Experience Inviting You To Become?

Your soul’s agenda differs from your ego’s agenda. Spiritual author Neale Donald Walsch suggests we must live from the soul’s agenda and not the egos. He invites us to expand our perspective of life by seeing our life’s journey and challenges through our Higher Self. Here’s the thing: your soul is not concerned with what you do for a living, where you live, what your credit rating is, or your accumulated net worth. Your soul’s agenda is grounded in your personal evolution as a soul having an earthly experience.

  1. What life lessons and experiences have been the theme of your life?
  2. What is life inviting you to witness? Is it financial hardship, gender equality, health matters or otherwise?

Your life struggles may be your soul’s plan to help you awaken your inner power. From this perspective, there are no accidents when we appreciate a greater intelligence is working behind the scenes to co-create our life’s circumstances.

3. Retreat If You Must But Don’t Give Up

When you experience uncertainty, it is natural to retreat so you can summon the courage to bounce back with renewed enthusiasm. What matters most is how you recover. Don’t be defeated by your experience because it will come back in another form. Many people cannot accept their ordeal and feel victimised; as though the event should not have happened to them. Why not you or me, or anyone else for that matter? Retreating from an experience in order to call upon courage may be the best plan sometimes. In other words, withdrawing is not defeat; remaining down is.

4. Time Heals All Wounds.

Avoid judging an experience as good or bad. If we try to make sense of an untoward event, hoping to find inner peace, we may bypass the purpose of the lesson. What I’m trying to say is that inner peace may or may not be the intended outcome of a negative experience. It may be growth and expansion. Often there is no explanation why things happen the way they do. There’s a great deal which takes place behind the scenes, which is beyond our logical mind. Trying to fill in the blanks is a recipe fuelled with wrong intentions. It is natural to seek answers for the death of a loved one or the dissolution of a marriage. In time, once the veil is lifted, you may view the experience as a journey of self-discovery and personal growth. Trust that when the pain has subsided, the lesson awaits you.

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