What and How We Think Determines How We Face Adversity by Fatima Salaam

This month, we are highlighting the value of “Growing Through A Storm”. We know that the wind blows on us all and that life is filled with tests. Rich and poor people experience death of children. Educated and uneducated people have marital problems. People of all races experience financial hardships. Some tests are light rain drops and other tests are raging storms. As Jim Rohn says: “it is not what happens that determines the quality of of our lives, it is what we choose to do when we have struggled to the sail and then discover, after all of our efforts, that the wind has changed direction.”

Now, that sounds easier said than done. The set of our sail is how we think and how we respond. Therefore, when the wind blows, we must quickly reset our sail by quickly and responsibly responding instead of reacting. Our philosophy, basically what and how we think, must be developed because it dictates how we deal with adversity. The best way to develop a powerful personal philosophy is do an objective review of the conclusions we have drawn about life. Any conclusion that is not working for us, may actually be working against us. For instance, as children we were told that we should go to school, get good grades, and get a good job. But we now understand that college does not always guarantee gainful employment these days.

If our philosophy no longer holds true and we are making decisions based off of our philosophy, then we can find ourselves moving further and further from our dreams and goals. If this is the case, then there are 5 ways to develop and expand our philosophy:

1. Learn from personal experiences. List all of your personal philosophies and mark if it no longer seems to be necessary or true.
2. Learn from an outside voice. Enlist help from a mentor, coach, or consultant.
3. Learn from other people’s success. Make a list of resources and take the time to read books, listen to audios, attend trainings, and watch videos.
4. Become a good listener and observer. Ask ourselves what did I get from the day instead of trying to just get through the day.
5. Keep a personal journal. It allows us to gather all of our observations and discoveries about life in our own words.

*Rohn, Jim. The Five Major Pieces to the Life Puzzle.

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