The Art of Adversity

Someone asked me recently who has been the most influential person in my life. I had to think long and hard about the answer because no one in particular came to mind.  People talk about a coach, family member, spouse or early-career boss, but I couldn’t think of any person in those roles that qualified as “most” influential.

In truth, adversity has been my most influential teacher. In a panic situation, I have always had an inner guide that has pulled the tools from the toolbox to maintain calm, perseverance, action, whatever was needed at that moment in time.  Here’s what I have learned from adversity.

1-      Keep calm and carry on

In life, knowing that even the scariest times in life will pass because the quicker things unfold the quicker they subside.  In the midst of the moment, it does not serve me to get swept away in emotion. Staying calm has given me the clearer mind to make the best decisions as to how to move forward and deal with the situation. I have found that this one of the most important pillars in the art of adversity as well as many other facets of life.

2-      Leverage your resources

Bad times call for good networks and that’s what has been a real life saver for me in times of adversity. Thankfully, my years of building a network pays off in times when I need support. In the face of troubling times, I have learned that there are many people in my life that believe in me and show up for me when I need it.

3-      Keep it moving, figuratively and literally

There’s a quote that says, “if you’re going through hell, keep going.” Adversity has motivated me to keep moving through the problem to a conclusion and also to keep moving my body. When animals experience stress, they literally shake it off. When humans experience stress, we sweat it out.   My regular exercise routine has helped keep me balanced and able to cope with the ups and downs of life.

4-      Adversity doesn’t have to be a permanent resident

After the situation has passed, I have learned to recognize that I don’t have to dwell on it. I can almost always find a positive take-away from the situation then I can leave it behind.

I have endured a lot of adversity throughout my lifetime and career. I can honestly say that these times are not easy, but they are great opportunities for growth, and that they are temporary. I hope this post encourages you, and helps you find the strength within you to push on through adversity. Thank you for taking the time to read my thoughts on the Art of Adversity.

Interested in more? Read more about Rick Morsovillo here.