overcoming adversity

Adversity comes in many forms, we all have it.

It might be the absence of a father growing up and all that’s entailed in that. It might be financial struggles, relationship problems, educational failures, the death of a parent or even health issues. The list goes on and on. Everybody faces adversities many times throughout their lives.

The real question is how to deal with and overcome adversity.

Growing up, my father was nowhere to be found. We lived in the projects and life wasn’t always so easy. I didn’t have a good male mentor to teach me how to deal with the challenges of life. As I reflect on the lessons life has taught me, there is one critical key that can help young men begin to come out of the deep hole of adversity.

Develop a winner’s mindset!

Our actions are outward expressions of our thoughts. If we get the thoughts right, right actions will follow. A winner’s mindset can be achieved over time by doing the following.

     First, unconditionally accept where you are right now.

     Second, let go of the bad things in your past. That is just baggage that you can’t do anything about and extra weight that you don’t need to carry with you into your future.

     Third, understand that you were created to achieve great things. You were created to be a winner. No matter what you’ve done, you deserve to overcome. Get that in your head.

     Fourth, change the negative CD of thoughts that run through your mind. Replace them with positive thoughts about you and your future. Speak positive, faith-filled words about where you’re going.

     And Fifth, don’t underestimate yourself and what you’re capable of. After all, you were created for greatness!

This will take some work and won’t happen overnight. I can tell you from personal experience that the results are well worth the work that you do.

Take this nugget and let it bring you great rewards.

Submitted by Richard Dowdy
Motivational Speaker and Front Line Leader Trainer
Author of the forthcoming book “Adversity – The Deep Hole 7 Keys to Overcoming Adversity”


right wrong

We are all broken people who were raised by broken people.

As righteous as we may think we are, we must admit (even if it is only to ourselves) we have many flaws. We have some hurt, some wrong, some insecurity that has affected us and our relationships.

And from our brokenness comes broken ways…enabling…co-dependency…we run too far…we stay too long…we are fearful…we have anger… we regret…the list goes on and on in all directions. But, by far, the hardest part about being broken is facing it because (in order to face it) you have to admit you make mistakes.

When it comes to raising young men, sometimes we are very quick to point out their failures and shortcomings. And if they defend their actions, we become irate. We yell. We scold. We tell them to own up! However, we are not as quick to admit the part we may have played in those failures and shortcomings.

Sometimes we make bad choices that directly or indirectly affect our children. We may be overprotective. We may not have protected them enough. We may be too lenient. We may be too hard. A divorce may have affected them or a decision to remarry. We may have moved when we should have stayed. We may have stayed when we should have moved. We may have gotten too wrapped up in our careers. We may have fallen short in our responsibilities. Whatever our shortcomings, our mistakes make us human. I know I have personally struggled with the mistakes I have made that adversely affected my children. For many years telling myself “I knew better than that.” When the reality is I didn’t! When you know better, you do better!

We have the right to be wrong.

We should give ourselves permission to make mistakes. We must not think so highly of ourselves that we can’t identify with others who make mistakes. While in our humble state, we must also give ourselves permission to make amends with a sincere heart to those we may have been affected and begin to move out of the realm of brokenness. Because when we realize our mistakes, we then are held accountable to turn things around…to make the change…to apologize.

I wonder if our Sons would be more apt to accept responsibility for their mistakes if they had a model. I wonder how healing it would be for them to know that we are truly sorry for any mistakes we made that contributed to their brokenness. Not making excuses or prettying up our bad choices; just calling a thing a thing! What a lesson and a gift that could be!

Some stumbling blocks can’t be moved past until they are addressed. In order to turn things around for our Sons, we may have to stop defending ourselves and give our Sons a point of reference. If you have found yourself at a stalemate with your Son, the turnaround may come from just two little words – “I’m sorry”.

By Mindy Fuller