The 8 Empowering Practices to Successfully Deal with Adversity. An image of a butterfly in a cocoon

“As with the butterfly, adversity is necessary to build character in people.”

Joseph B. Wirthlin

Adversity is described in the dictionary as facing unfavourable fortune, an unfortunate event or circumstance, difficulty or distress. We all face adversity, big and small, in our lives. Whether it is as small as spilt milk on the counter, or as large as receiving a diagnosis of an illness, using the following 8 empowering practices will help us prevail when we experience challenge.

The discomfort of misfortune lends itself well to feelings of suffering and self-pity, leading us to fall into patterns of victimhood. Is it okay to spend a little time feeling sorry for ourselves? Sure! But the key to living well, at any time, is taking responsibility for how we choose to respond to events, people, and situations in our lives.
Here are the 8 empowering practices I use to help me move through adversity.

The discomfort of misfortune lends itself well to feelings of suffering and self-pity, leading us to fall into patterns of victimhood. Is it okay to spend a little time feeling sorry for ourselves? Sure! But the key to living well, at any time, is taking responsibility for how we choose to respond to events, people, and situations in our lives.

Here are the 8 empowering practices I use to help me move through adversity.

  1. Ask for Help – When we face challenges we tend to feel “all alone”. If we look to others for assistance, we not only eliminate feeling isolated, we often get supported in a way that quickly eases our suffering.

  2. Be Grateful – Finding the blessings in a situation instantly uplifts us! Gratitude is one of the most transformative practices we can add to our arsenal. There are always things to be thankful for, even when things feel bleak. Simply giving thanks that you haven’t always faced this situation, is a good start.

  3. Recognize Your Strength & Courage – We are so much stronger and courageous than we give ourselves credit for. Take a moment to acknowledge that you are doing your best to tackle this challenge head on and that takes incredible fortitude.

  4. See Yourself as A Problem Solver – You have probably faced adversity before, and I am guessing you got through it!! Remember times in your past where you have had to solve problems…what skills did you use? How did it turn out? Did it feel bigger in the moment?

  5. Make A Plan– Start brainstorming possible solutions or actions you can take to begin to sort out your problem. I am a list maker so when things feel challenging, I write out a detailed list of things I need to do to start to ease my stress, pain, discomfort.

  6. Take Baby Steps – Action is critical in changing anything! The key to feeling successful and not overwhelmed is breaking down your plan into tiny, very doable steps.
  7. Talk Out Loud – We can be our worst critic, biggest doubter and most dramatic voice. Getting out of our heads allows us to quiet our negative self-talk. Make sure you share what’s going on with people you trust, like friends, family or a professional such as, a Life Coach.

  8. See the Lessons – There is always something to learn in every situation we face. Sometimes this is not possible to see when we are in the midst of challenge but the more we look for the teachings, the more we grow.

All of these practices are possible and not as hard as we tend to make them feel (especially when we’re in the thick of negativity). It is our ego’s natural response to make us feel overwhelmed, but with a bit of awareness we can see that nothing is insurmountable.

Most importantly, during difficult times, I urge you to be gentle with yourself. Self-Compassion is a gift we can give ourselves always, but is especially good when we feel as though life is too hard or we are not doing well.

And, even though these practices are wonderful, remember that they are exactly that, practices, and can take a lifetime to develop fully. Take your time with them. Experiment with them and once you are through your crisis keep practicing them so the next time you face adversity you are a little more prepared!

Much love,
Karla xo