Overcoming Adversity + Accepting Change
By Carol Cooke, She Science Ambassador
There are three things in life that are certain: death, which none of us want to see; taxes, which none of us like to pay; and change, which most of us dislike. However change happens every single day of our lives, from the little things to big crisis’ that can hit our lives.
Adversity and change can trigger progress, but unfortunately for most of us all we see are the problems before us and instead of looking beyond the actual problem/crisis we only think in the negative. When change or adversity occurs it is important to accept that it has happened, believe in yourself and your abilities, and move on. Look for solutions instead of the negatives and although there will be obstacles along the way, each stumble will help you change the way you tackle the problem. Your progress will demonstrate that change can work to your advantage.
Adversity and change makes you re-evaluate your life. We have to understand that things don’t always stay the same and we must become accepting, creative and adept at confronting challenges that are thrown in our way.
A good friend of mine Warren MacDonald taught me that it’s not about ‘what you see’, but ‘how you see it.’ He should know, as he lost both his legs in a hiking accident but has gone on to change the way he sees things and built an incredible life. What an amazing world this would be if we could all reassess how we see things. We all experience changes to our life plan, but we have to remember that the actual changes aren’t important; the way we deal with them or ‘how we see them’ is what matters. We can decide to curl up and die or we can embrace them. Some of the changes or crisis we face will be good and some will be bad. Life won’t always be fair but how we deal with those things is what will make the difference.
If you are facing a change or adversity in your life you have to decide if it will be a problem or an opportunity. Is it a negative or a positive, a limitation or a challenge? How you view it is up to you. I tend to lean towards the opportunities, the positives and the challenges and I don’t believe we can accept change without working on it; it is a never-ending process. A couple of ways that I do on a daily basis is to try something new every day. This can be as small as smiling at a stranger or just saying ‘G’Day’.
If you are facing change or adversity right now you can also write a sentence outlining the positive outcomes. Post it somewhere where you will see it each day. This will help reprogram your brain to think positively about change. Then, in a week, add another positive outcome to the list, eventually you will have a list of positives that demonstrate that the change is good!
By Carol Cooke AM
A woman that believes that “the greatest pleasure in life is doing what people say you cannot do”, Carol has overcome a serious MS diagnosis to triumph on the world stage at the Paralympics. Carol teaches the world through both example and her regular speaking engagements that “nothing is impossible if we dare to face our fears and believe in ourselves”. Carol hopes to head to Rio 2016 to defend her 1st place position in the T1-T2 Road Time Trial. Follow Carol’s adventures via her website, facebook orinstagram.