Facing Adversity

A goal without obstacles would either teach us nothing or not be worthy of our efforts.

Facing Adversity

We all face adversity at different times, in different ways, to varying degrees. It's never easy, it's never fun. What can be helpful is how we frame our challenges and obstacles.

The obstacle can either be that which is tirelessly preventing us from what we want — whether that be growth, fulfillment, or simply getting back what we once had — or it can be the very thing that makes us stronger as we aim towards an individual or collective goal.

One key here is that the goal be worthy. As Rudolf Steiner said in the 19th Century:

“The student is impervious to all influences which would divert him from the goal he has set for himself, as long as he can regard it as the right goal. For him, obstacles contain a challenge that impels him to surmount them, but never a reason for giving up.” - Rudolf Steiner

If we are aiming for the right goal, it's only natural and fitting that obstacles would prevent themselves...and we'd prefer it to be that way too, because a goal without obstacles would either teach us nothing or not be worthy of our efforts.

As Abigail Adams reminds us:

“It is not in the still calm of life, or the repose of a pacific station, that great characters are formed…the habits of a vigorous mind are formed in contending with difficulties. Great necessities call out great virtues.” - Abigail Adams

There are many necessities today for which we must call on our virtues as we contend with various difficulties. No matter the adversity you may have faced in the past, or are facing now, it's time to see this adversity, no matter how fairly or unfairly presented, as being the thing that will help you grow stronger individually in service to the collective.

“The true person is revealed in difficult times. So when trouble comes, think of yourself as a wrestler whom God, like a trainer, has paired with a tough young buck. For what purpose? To turn you into Olympic-class material.” - Epictetus

No matter the wrestler you've been paired with, I believe in you.