Being stronger is not always about the gym
There’s no doubt 2020 will change the way we do things for a while. It’s been a real humdinger of a year. Don’t know what humdinger means? Look it up. 😊
And much like September 11, the cat is out of the bag and there’s no going back. To say it’s been a challenging year is an understatement. We’ve had hundreds of thousands unnecessary deaths and lots of professions have reached their breaking points.
Plus, so many businesses and jobs have been lost.
Personally, I think the mental toll almost exceeds the physical toll. I bet therapy and prescription drugs sales are way up. Whether you believe the virus is a hoax or not, the effect on some people is very very real. There’s no denying that.
But enough is already written about this and there’s no need to add to this noise. What I’d like to point out is when you’re faced with a difficult situation(s) you’re stronger than you think.
I want you to think back to a time when you overcame a difficult situation and you overcame it . Here’s a couple of personal examples to get your ball rolling.
A Personal Example
These serve as examples for you to think back to a point in your life when you faced and overcame a challenging situation. Although talking and writing about myself is my favorite subject, it’s not my intention to brag but to highlight your ability to overcome.
Around 1990, I was living in a halfway house and the Government was paying me to study. My family was all over the place and my father had cancer which would end up take his life. It wasn’t the most settled time in my life.
Anyway, I received a phone call from my dad that his father, my grandfather had passed. He had been ill for a long time, so it wasn’t a shock but when a loved one passes, it sucks.
But I’ll fast forward to the funeral.
The day of my grandfather’s funeral happened to be the day I would sit a second-year college exam. Lousy timing right?
My mother was telling everyone in earshot during the service that I had to sit an exam in a few hours, like it was a badge of honor. However, I didn’t want to draw unnecessary attention to myself but telling my mum to shut her trap was pointless. I grinned and beared it.
With Me So Far???
After the service mum took me out to lunch so I could gather my thoughts, but I was a crying mess. I couldn’t remember anything I’d studied and well, my grandfather was dead and things hit me like a ton of bricks. Lucky my mum helped climb down from the walls and slowly I started to calm down.
Things started to come back to me as I began to lock in on the exam and separate myself, temporarily from just happened. Although it was difficult, it was necessary if I didn’t want all my hard work to go to waste.
I sat at the exam table and whispered ‘this one’s for you pop’ pointed to the ceiling and went to work. I ended up getting an A and then I grieved later.
Another Stronger Example
After my grandmother passed after a long illness, around eight years later, it was in her will to be buried above her husband (my grandfather) in the town that they had lived long ago. Me, my mum, and my youngest sister drove there for the service.
Sometime during the three-hour trip there my mum decided she was too upset to give the eulogy and wanted me to do it. WHAT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
It was unexpected and something I’ve never done. It took some time to wrap my mind around giving a speech to people I’ve never met. So, much like the first example, I had to calm down, put aside grieving and contemplate and focus on the eulogy.
To focus I went to a spot where I’d spent my childhood summers swimming and playing with family and friends. I sat, looked out on the Murray River, and remembered all the good times I had coming to grandma’s house.
Thinking these times helped me collect my thoughts, stopped me from turning into a blubbering mess and I ‘wrote’ the speech in my mind . As far as I remember, the speech went fine, and I somehow kept my composure.
What Does This Mean For You?
Think back to a tough situation and how you got through it.
Remember how you did it and whether it was all you or with the support of others. Tap into the feeling you felt and then the next time you’re in a tough spot, remember how you kept your shit together. This makes it more likely you’ll stand stronger and not crumble.
Hopefully, I didn’t get to Dr. Phil on you.
Obviously, this doesn’t work every time. Even drawing on this strength, I still fold like a deck of cards. Because every tough spot you find yourself in is different. However, it only has to work once to be a success and then hopefully it will snowball.
Life is never in a straight line and you’re going to face difficult and dark times. But life never stops and you’re going to have to perform even when you’re NOT at your best. To do this, it helps to draw on your inner strength.
Because you’re stronger than you think.