A leap of faith
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Empowerment through Challenge
“Being challenged in life is inevitable, being defeated is optional.” ― Roger Crawford
There are times when the road seems too hard, the climb too steep, the challenge too great. There are times when the most reasonable decision would be to give up, admit that the challenge was just too hard, and go home.
There are also people for whom that is not a choice.
Their choice is to press on to succeed or literally to die trying – or not trying. Sometimes, the challenge MUST be faced, whether we like it or not. At these times, heroism surfaces.
The unlikely heroes are those people facing chronic illnesses, chronic pain, the “invisible diseases” such as Depression, CFS and Fibromyalgia and other illnesses that at a glance, people afflicted with them show no visible symptoms. Other people with little choice are those whose children face a challenge and as parents, they must continue. There are people struggling on minimum wage, raising families on incomes below the poverty line, with no safety net and where failing the #challenge means starvation.
Invisible Illness – unsung heroes
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There are movies produced about some of the heroes. We may never know the truth of their heroism, such as in the tale of “Lorenzo’s Oil”, where a father studied his son’s disease and in the movie, found the cure for it. There are real life parallels to this tale now, especially since genetic engineering has become an acknowledged branch of science.
There are other heroes, such as where a person has been wrongfully convicted and either they or their partner studied law in order to challenge and perhaps overturn the decision. Heroes where the underdog came through, changed their world, and that of many others too.
Heroes of everyday challenges
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On a day-to-day basis, there are many heroes facing a challenge that will never make headlines, but is just as real. The single mother, trying to raise her children, without support, on a budget far below what is necessary, in circumstances that can at best be described as a challenge. The small business owner facing tough competition in a changing market, struggling to survive. A person with low self-confidence and low self esteem looking for a new job, a career, or even just a friend. The dyslexic person in the admin role, trying to write a report. So many people face challenges that to others are no big deal, but to them, it’s their life!
There are times when a challenge has created a break through in thinking and a whole new invention, solution or branch of science has resulted. The problem has been solved because someone either “broke through” the problem with advanced thinking and higher intelligence, or they “broke with” the thinking; they tried something totally different, lateral and creative and found a back-door solution to the problem! Only challenge provides this opportunity and it is how humanity has advanced.
Can you break through to succeed where others have failed the challenge?
It’s possible, but that doesn’t mean you always get your old life back. Sometimes, it’s not there to reclaim. You may overcome the challenge but you cannot unlearn the pain you endured. You will be a different person, even if your old life is offered to you again. It may not feel the same, because you are now changed, evolved. You’ll need to grow into your new life, even when you succeed and overcome the challenge!
“Embrace each challenge in your life as an opportunity for self-transformation.” ― Bernie S. Siegel
Where do you turn, when it is YOU facing the challenge?
The first thing to remember is that we are not alone in this. Maybe there is no saviour nearby, but that doesn’t mean help is not available. A quote from Einstein said “Man cannot solve the problems he created with the same level of intelligence with which he created them”. In other words, to solve a problem, access a higher level of wisdom, and to do that we need to find or become someone with more wisdom. Become smarter.
How can we become more intelligent when facing a challenge?
Specialised knowledge is required to solve a specific problem. Go to the source of wisdom in that area. Research, learn, outsmart your challenge.
Financial challenge – perhaps too much debt?
The local library has resources on debt and creditor control, but also resources on creating more income and cashflow. Life Change 90 presented the Financial Empowerment blog recently. It also has brilliant strategies on how you can become financially empowered by accessing higher financial wisdom and thinking.
Personal development, working on your Self Confidence and Self Esteem can make a huge difference. There are simple and easy ways to improve these critical areas of your life, when you know how. These blogs HERE and HERE provide a pathway to tools, resources and education in those areas.
There are two parts to a health challenge: Firstly, finding the cure and recovering from your illness, if that is possible. Secondly, managing to live and function and have a quality of life while you face your health challenge.
Starting over in a new life
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Facing a health challenge can be debilitating. Whether it is pain, energy levels, tiredness, nausea, headache or more, when it is constant, it wears you down, slows thinking and numbs your feelings and emotions. It is relentless. The most positive person will face times of despair when it just seems too hard, too painful and just too much. We wrote about this in the Challenges Of Chronic Illness Blog. All the while you are feeling so miserable, you also face the medication, the hard work that you and your mind and your physical body must still do to actually look for and implement the cure and the healing process. It’s even harder if there is no recognised cure and symptom management is your only apparent option.
What does your particular challenge have in common with all other challenges?
There are a few aspects of facing a challenge that are common to each, and therefore have a way of being handled and managed. There are specifics which are unique to each individual challenge, and you will learn to handle these once you get the fundamentals down. Let’s look at the common aspects for strategies towards success.
We all need goals!
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First: Goalsetting. It is vital to the life of every person on the planet, but handled differently when facing a severe challenge. When life is easy, you can set huge goals and risk everything on them because you feel invincible. But that’s not now. Your goals need to be small, step by step goals that you might mark off in hours, or even minutes. The increments to your milestones might be tiny, but they are there. When you achieve them, you must celebrate like crazy! For a person learning to walk after losing their legs in an accident, running a marathon is not the goal; just standing up is the challenge. When you make it, celebrate! And when you take the first step again, celebrate that too! The marathon can come later; right now, let’s just take one more step! Keep your goals small enough to achieve realistically, without compromising other critical areas of your life. Celebrate each in your own way when you achieve them.
Second: Support. Who do you have around you? A team is important. Not necessarily friends because sometimes they try to not hurt your feelings, by not telling you the truth. Someone impartial. Maybe a coach? Your church minister? Someone who can be a mentor to you and honestly let you know how you are doing, by providing objectivity.
Third: A program. You MUST be organised. This challenge will wear you down unless you have a plan of attack for it, and you follow that plan. The plan needs to address your goals, and keep you up to working towards your goals every day. It needs to empower your motivation to keep you inspired, even through tough times. Affirmations and encouragement, inspirational education, new ways to look at obstacles, and challenges to broaden your thinking to find new solutions. It should make you think laterally, to give you a fresh perspective.
Fourth: Personal development and education. To rise above your challenge, you need to be more of you than you are now. Self education, self development, growth and evolution are required. Your program must provide a pathway to a new level of consciousness if it is to work for you.
Fifth: Encouragement. A platform and a process to recognise and celebrate learnings, lessons and achievements. When you have a win, it must be acknowledged. Every night, you need your program to register your activities and achievements so you can chart your production and progress.
Sixth: A Supportive Environment. Even if you are totally alone, you need an environment around you that is positive and uplifting, conducive to success and progress, even if much of it is internal to begin with; especially to begin with – the time of most challenge! This is when self-discipline and focus on goals is most critical, to enable you to build momentum towards your goals, to consolidate new habits where necessary, and to leave the old ones behind. Your program must create this environment around you.
To learn about and access such a program, CLICK HERE for the framework and the features you need to build in, and the benefits it will give you. Plug your life and your challenges into this program, to look at your world in a new light. The light at the end of the tunnel!
If you feel better able to handle your challenges after reading this post, please reblog it and share it around. You may be doing a friend or someone in your family the favour they have been secretly praying and crying out for!
Til next time, fair winds and full sails!
Please also refer to my other posts on Empowerment, to assist you with your specific challenge.
Empowered by Gratitude
Empowered by my Failures
Integrity, Spirituality and Empowerment
Empowerment through Emotional Intelligence
Empowerment for Men
Empowerment for Women
Empowerment for Teens
Empowerment for Children
What would an empowered man do?
Empowered by love
A new lease on a new life!
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“The brick walls are there for a reason. The brick walls are not there to keep us out. The brick walls are there to give us a chance to show how badly we want something. Because the brick walls are there to stop the people who don’t want it badly enough. They’re there to stop the other people.”
― Randy Pausch, The Last Lecture