Don’t Run From Adversity- Armor Up And Face It
Adversity can shake you to your core. It challenges you physically, mentally, and spiritually. It can bring you to your knees in prayer as you try to understand your place and purpose in the world.
Adversity acts as a vase that is thrown against the wall to shatter to the floor. You look at the pieces scattered on the floor and determine how to put it all back together.
Does the vase remain on the floor in pieces?
Do you allow it to lay dormant as you walk away?
Or, do you pick it up and create something more beautiful and strong than the original structure?
It is your choice!
Life is filled with adversity. You will face struggles throughout life. The vase will get smashed against the wall. However, it is the difficult times that teach us and open us up to opportunity.
Hear me out.
Life lessons, business opportunities, new careers, inventions, relationships have been created through adversity. Vera Wang is a perfect example of a woman who took adversity to create new career opportunities and a business.
Vera Wang Story
Known for balancing modern bridal designs with traditional elegance, Vera Wang is one of the most prominent designers in America. But, this was not her plan.
At an early age-
Wang was an amazing figure skater. Although she spent years intensely training and competing, she failed to make the 1968 US Olympic team. After missing qualification, she had to leave skating behind. This was not easy for Wang. She felt as if she fell down and failed. But as a figure skater, she was trained to pick herself up and start again.
Attending Sarah Lawrence College she completed her degree in art history.
Upon her graduation from college, in 1971 Wang wanted to turn to fashion. She thought she could continue her education in design, but her father told her that it was time to get a job instead.
Fortunately, the summer after her junior year of college, she worked at the Yves Saint Laurent boutique on New York’s Madison Avenue. At the boutique she waited on Frances Patiky Stein who was one of the Fashion Directors of Vogue at the time. She encouraged Wang to call her when she was finished with college. Wang believed in herself and took the bold move to Stein her two years later seeking a job at Vogue.
Soon after her conversation with Stein, Wang was hired at Vogue as a rover, or temporary assistant. She quickly worked her way up the ladder, becoming one of the magazine’s youngest ever fashion editors.
Though she moved up quickly and was respected at Vogue, she faced another set-back. After working at Vogue for over 15 years, she was turned down for an advancement to the editor-in-chief position. This was discouraging to her. So, Wang left Vogue and, in 1987, joined Ralph Lauren as the design director.
While planning her wedding to Arthur Becker, she found there was not a designer or retail store satisfying the needs of the modern woman. Just then there was a vision. She believed she could start a bridal boutique and create modern styles for brides.
And that, she did. In 1990, Wang opened her own bridal boutique, Bridal House Ltd., on Madison Avenue. In an interview with the NY Times Wang notes, “Because I didn’t come from a bridal background, I think I brought fashion to [the bridal industry],” she says. “I was fearless because I really didn’t know any better.”
Everything in life has a reason behind it. You must allow yourself to step back, learn, and trust the struggle.
A Business of Fashion article shares an interview with Vera Wang. She told the Business of Fashion, “People have done far better than me in far shorter periods of time, but that wasn’t my story. It was brick by brick, client by client, store by store. It’s been a trip of passion, but it has not been a quick trip. Nor has it been easy. And that is the truth.”
Your journey will look very different from others. But when you accept adversity is just part of the game, and become determined to achieve, you will open up your opportunities.
Don’t run from adversity. Savor it. Seek it.
I know. This is freaking difficult. So, armor up.
Armor up to face adversity.
Just as a football player is going into battle for the Friday night win with football pads as armor, or as a warrior is armoring up to go into battle, you must armor up to face adversity.
Four Ways To Armor Up To Face Adversity:
1- Armor Up With Love:
Life will get tough. You will not achieve every goal you have in your heart. It helps to be clear of why you have passion for the things you love.
Passion in your purpose motivates you to keep pushing to be successful. You will find the energy you need to overcome adversity if you are passionate enough.
When you are working hard on something meaningful to you, you will always find a way.
What is something you love?
2- Armor Up With Preparation:
Think of the worst case scenario and consider how you will act. Create a mental plan to strengthen your mind to overcome mishaps. Catastrophes in life will happen, you must determine how you will react.
I am not saying to dwell on the negative or hold yourself back with “what if” scenarios. But, determine how you would focus forward and prepare for the disasters that could happen.
Think about losing it.
How do you feel about the loss?
How can you prepare for it?
3- Armor Up With Belief In You
Those who rebound easiest from adversity believe in themselves.
Hopeless and powerless thought will not allow you to succeed. Self-confidence and strong belief in your capabilities is the best armor for adversity.
In any situation, you can use your ingenuity, leverage your talent and be open minded to achieve.
What talents would you leverage?
4- Armor Up By Making Peace With Adversity
No blaming. No moping. No feeling sorry for yourself.
These feelings will sabotage your ability to create a solution. It is important to process the situation in your mind, make peace with whatever happened. Then, you can determine how you will react. But, until you make peace with adversity, you cannot move on.
How can you make peace with the difficulty you may face?
The only way to avoid adversity is to choose not to love, not to compete at a high level, or to get in the game at all.
Who wants to have a life without a love for someone or something?
Who wants to be mediocre?
Who doesn’t want to be in the game at all?
Not me! And if you are reading this, I am sure it is not you either.
So, let’s armor up!
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