Adversity — no one wants it, but we all get it.

Last week, I talked about adversity testing our strength. And, this year tested our strength more than any other. The vital characteristic that needs to be coupled with adversity is resiliency.

We have no control over how long the trials and tribulations of this year will last. In that, we must remind ourselves that the only difference between happiness and sadness lies in our perception of events and not with the events themselves. I know this seems unfair, but our mental toughness helps us get through our most challenging times.

In one of his writings in his Meditations, Marcus Aurelius tells us, “It’s unfortunate that this happened. No. It’s fortunate that this has happened and I’ve remained unharmed by it – not shattered by the present or frightened of the future. It could have happened to anyone. But not everyone could have remained unharmed by it.”

I quoted a stoic last week as well. I find myself going back to these writings in difficult times to remind myself that humankind has always lived in troubled times. Adversity has always been there. No matter when or where you look throughout time, people have faced many challenges. 

We need to find ways to be responsible for our emotions, not suppressed by them. Our circumstances are what they are. We cannot control that. But, we can control how we handle ourselves in those circumstances and use them to continue to grow strong.

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