How To Survive The Relentless Winds of Life's Challenges.
You probably already know that life is comprised of a series of ups and downs; Twists and turns which end up testing us to the core. Hopefully, in our formative years, we were able to establish a solid foundation upon which to continue constructing the building that will ultimately be our life's biggest achievement. Even if we were fortunate enough to be standing upon a solid foundation, the solidity and stability of that foundation is bound to be tested from time to time. For some, a challenging situation could present itself in the form of a medical diagnosis, the loss of a loved one, a sudden financial burden or a host of other reasons. Regardless of what this traumatic situation might be, there are several steps you can follow to give you a better chance of recovering promptly from it. I have developed a simple to remember formula that can help you see things from a different perspective and hopefully surpass whatever situation is affecting you. I call it the S.T.A.R.T. Formula. Here are the steps:
Surrendering to the circumstances is not an option, understanding the circumstances, learning from them and moving forward is our only option. Now that we have objectively surveyed the damage and transformed our attitudes about it, it is time to set our sights on rebuilding that which has been destroyed. It is now time to set new goals and begin looking optimistically at what is yet to come. This triumphant mentality can help us shake off the sadness and redirect our energy into taking action. After all, simply sitting down and doing nothing is not something that characterizes us. Of course, every circumstance is different and unique to every individual and there will be times that previous efforts and projects might have to be abandoned and a new plan must be started from scratch.
SurveyWhile you are enduring the challenge and immediately after it has passed (if it is a transient situation), pay close attention to what has actually happened and what damage has to be dealt with. The Survey phase of this formula has a dual purpose; It helps you measure the damage and how the situation has affected you and those around you. If we were talking about the passing storm, then the Survey phase is the time spent evaluating the speed of the winds, the amount of precipitation and the potential damage that may affect the land in its path. This is also a good time to also spend time focusing on what has survived. Finding a silver lining during the surveying phase is an essential step because it helps us be grateful for that which we still have and reminds us that not all is lost. This gives us something to fight for and can help fuel our determination to fight and recover.
TransformSometimes all we need to do to begin changing our current situation, is to change our perspective about it. I love how Dr. Wayne Dyer puts it, he says "When you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change". It often times is a change in perspective that can get your mind ready to begin moving in the right direction. After you have surveyed the damage, it is in your best interest to begin thinking objectively about the aftermath and prepare to change your attitude to recovery-mode. We often feel sorry for ourselves after enduring a tragedy and it is completely normal to run through a wide gamut of emotions when we face loss. However, here is where we do our best to employ the virtue of Fortitude; Thereby, transforming our attitude from looking backwards to setting our sights forward.
ReachThe Reach phase of the formula has two perspectives. The first encourages you to begin moving in the direction of those new goals, which were set in the Aim phase. This is the part where you execute the new plan and begin moving forward, away from the aftermath of the storm. This is the moment when we set our sights on the new challenges that will help us be victorious and achieve bigger and better things. The second perspective of the Reach phase is a reminder that we are not alone. Reaching is not merely limited to reaching for our goals, but reaching out to one another and working together to rebuild and recover. After all, the human race is not one built for solitude, but one of togetherness, cooperation and collaboration. Here is where charity and Brotherly love shine bright. Is in this phase that we recognize that others need help and we recognize that it is ok to accept help when needed. If we are surrounded with so many like-minded individuals, whom have promised to look after one another, we are then prudent to give and receive help when the time is right. The goals which were set during the Aim phase become a reality when we work together. Usually towards a common goal, which can have exponential results in comparison to those endeavours which we take upon ourselves in isolation.
TranscendFinally, we arrive at the Transcendence phase. This is where we are able to move beyond and climb over the challenges that tested us in the first place. This transcendence includes the scrutiny of what happened and helps us avoid similar difficulties in the future. This phase must also be accompanied by a commitment to not define ourselves by that which happened to us, but rather by the resilience and determination that continues to move us forward. We are a society of Friends and Brothers dedicated to our betterment and the assistance of one another. We transcend when we surpass the obstacles, twists and turns brought by life and set our sights on helping others recover from their own difficulties. After all, within the moral virtues that define our Order, we find Charity, which is not self-centered, but rather selfless. The next time you or someone you know is going through a difficult situation, remember this simple formula which should help you give structure to the recovery from such situation. Remember that we are our best when we are with others and can surrender to the power of unity. Let's work together to improve ourselves and our surroundings by focusing on this method of recovery. So, what can you do If things become challenging? Simply S.T.A.R.T.
Queries from the QuarryThink about the most challenging situation you have endured. What advice would you have to help someone recover from a similar situation? What word of advice you wish you had before you endured your challenging experience? (Please share your answer in the comment section below)
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