6 Tips for Overcoming Adversity

by The Relationship Guy
June 24, 2015

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In this post, we’re looking at 6 tips for overcoming adversity. 

William J. Clinton once said, If you live long enough, you’ll make mistakes. But if you learn from them, you’ll be a better person. It’s how you handle adversity, not how it affects you.

The main thing is never quit, never quit, never quit.”

Adversity is part of life and something we cannot control. How we choose to respond, however, IS within our control. Let’s see how.

In many ways, life seems to be one trial after another or can seem that way at least.

Our biggest task is to successfully navigate these trials.

The exact hurdles will differ from person to person.

We all have challenges, though.

The difference is some of us seem to have developed an uncanny ability to successfully deal with any obstacle and overcome adversity, while others struggle.

The first question I always have is, what’s the difference that makes this difference?

What I’ve learned is that almost every result has a learnable strategy behind it.

We just need to spend the time figuring it out and replicating it.

We can all learn to be part of the group. of people that deal with adversity successfully.

Here are a few tips that you might want to try to make overcoming adversity easier:

1. Overcoming adversity demands that you practice acceptance.

This is perhaps the hardest but most important tip.

Many of us choose to practice avoidance, which only allows the challenge to grow in size and complexity.

You’re taking the first step toward victory if you can accept what’s happening in your life.

It’s hard to find a solution if you refuse to acknowledge that there’s an issue.

2. You must consider the advantages of the situation, even when it’s tough.

It’s not easy to find the bright side of challenging times.

But, focusing on the negative only makes the situation more difficult.

Your efforts at positive thinking might feel a bit contrived at first, but the habit will feel more natural in time.

Simply ask yourself,

“What is the advantage of this situation?” 

Or ask yourself,

“What  is this situation teaching me that can serve my life moving forward?

3. Use all of your available resources.

Consider all the resources you have available to you.

Friends and family:

You may feel like isolating yourself when you’re struggling, but spending time with those that care about you can make the tough times much easier.

If you’re lacking a good support system, now is the time to strengthen existing ties and forge new ones.

Ask for help:

Many people feel as if it’s rude to just offer their assistance.

They’re waiting for you to ask! So ask and get the help you need.

It’s surprising how many people are willing to help if you’ll just make the request.

Utilize your inner resources:

Be determined to find a solution.

Practice having faith and confidence in yourself.

If you believe everything will work out, it usually will.

You largely get what you expect.

4. Train yourself to focus (more) on solutions.

When you focus on something, it tends to magnify it in your mind, so avoid spotlighting the negative ramifications of your situation.

Instead, focus on finding and executing a solution.

Just take it step-by-step.

You’ll overcome your challenge before you know it.

The solution to your challenge can often involve unpleasant steps, such as ending a relationship or picking up a second job.

The key is to visualise a positive outcome and simply do the work required.

Just keep the outcome in mind and keep moving forward.

5. Be persistent.

Few challenges can withstand persistence.

If you apply your best solution and things don’t work out, adjust your approach and keep moving forward.

It will probably take less effort and time than you think to turn things around.

Persistence is paramount to overcoming adversity.

6. Consider those that have been successful in overcoming adversity.

The world is full of examples of individuals who have overcome amazing odds.

Helen Keller became both blind and deaf at a very young age.

However, she became a highly educated and influential woman at a time when very few women were able to pursue higher education.

It is truly incredible reading about the strategies she had to apply to create the life that she did.

What she did would be daunting for most.

Yet it has been done, which means it can be done again.

We all face the challenges of adversity on a regular basis.

The most successful people are able to deal with adversity with a minimal amount of self-generated drama of any kind.

Simply stay focused on executing possible solutions, and utilise all of your available resources.

Since overcoming adversity is a continual part of life, it’s beneficial to become good at it!

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About the author 

The Relationship Guy

Gideon Hanekom is the founder of TheRelationshipGuy.com, a top-50 relationship blog (2021) and top-100 marriage blog (2021) which focuses on providing healthy relationship advice about love and life. He earned a Master's degree in theological studies before training as a professional counsellor and hypnotherapist (DipProfCouns., DipMSHT.) almost 10 years ago. He completed a graduate diploma in Psychology and is currently pursuing postgraduate Psychology studies at Massey University. He has been married to his wife for over sixteen years and is the dad of two children. His articles have been published on Marriage.com and The Good Men Project.

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