personal growth, growth

Creating Growth from Hardships

By Peter J. Strauss, J.D. LL.M.

In this article, we’ll explore the importance of growth from hardships. Challenges and adversity are two of the most powerful forces in life. How you choose to respond determines success or failure as they can bring out your best or your worst. Humans are wired to avoid pain. This usually means the instinctive response to adversity is to make it go away. Paradoxically, when misfortune is removed, one of the key factors to achieving success vanishes with it. 

Building Character

What mindset will you adopt in the face of obstacles? Do you turn them into springboards or are they roadblocks? Will hardships alter your focus into being bitter or into getting better? Setbacks are frequently growth accelerators. They provide the opportunity to reinforce self-assurance, revitalize your commitment to what you want to achieve, and reassess what you are willing to sacrifice to make it happen. 

Character building is crucial to overcoming hardships. It shapes us into who we are and who we will become. It creates the confidence to overcome and the learning mechanisms to deal with the things that don’t go our way.

Create Resilience

You create resilience through facing and overcoming difficult situations. Every challenge we face and navigate strengthens our will, confidence, and our ability to conquer future obstacles. You probably know you’ll face a variety of hardships throughout your life. Learn how to prepare for various situations to help overcome them as quickly and efficiently as possible.

Learn from Discomfort

Life is full of difficulties, challenges and unexpected situations. And, no matter how intelligent or talented you are, you will face them all the same. Don’t try to avoid them and keep an even keel through mediocrity and adversity. We learn the most from the discomfort as it forces us to rethink what is required to be successful.

Calamities tend to draw out our strengths and other qualities that would have laid dormant without it.

Acceptance

Hard times will happen. This is simply another aspect of life on earth. See it as a facet of self-growth. Misfortune tests you to become stronger and to face things head on, to dig that much deeper. Nothing worth reaching for will come without setbacks. Accepting that you’ll go through tough times and have setbacks before they occur will help you plan for contingencies—which will get you back on track faster.

Resources

You will be surprised how often someone will have had a similar experience and can help guide you through a difficult time. It is making yourself vulnerable and reaping rewards for opening yourself up to those you learn to trust the most. It is the courage to keep moving forward, and it is the belief that there is more on the other side.

Reach out to mentors, family, friends, and colleagues—depending on the type of setback you’re facing. If you have a unique situation and can’t quickly get assistance, you may also be able to find support groups that can help you tackle your issues. You may also be surprised at how many people are ready and willing to help you. Just be sure you’re prepared to pay it forward when someone else needs you.

Conclusion

Often life does not go as planned, and hard times are a part of that. How you react and move forward is what matters. Move forward with a renewed vision. Once you can get your head around why adversity can be a force for positive change, you will be better able to embrace challenges and grow from overcoming them. The impact on your people and your organization can be enormous, so start that mindset shift today.

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