How To Overcome Adversity

Overcoming adversityWhen you suffer from a serious illness it is important for you to move forward and get past the trauma you have experienced. You may be changed forever, either physically or emotionally and it is important to know how to overcome your adversity.

When I suffered from both a stroke and a brain tumour at the same time, I was in a state of shock and really did not feel the gut wrenching hysteria that many experience. I don’t know why as everything pointed to a life and death situation, especially as the tumour was seven centimetres inside the brain and was pushing the brain stem out of alignment.

I think I was able to cope so well because I was able to see a benefit from this trauma. It helped me to be more goal orientated to reach milestones that may be difficult to reach, but were possible. I realised that something good always comes from every bad thing that happens to us. We do not necessarily see what this can be at first – but it does happen.

Believing that there is a silver lining to all adversity made me keen to find just what my silver lining would be. The first think I had to do was to stay positive and not fret and feel depressed about what was happening to me.

Secondly, I found it important to think of others and try to help them. This began for me while I was still in hospital as I tried to help fellow patients. I was quite successful in a number of cases and even the medical staff commented on how I was able to be supportive for them. The more involved you are with considering others and their problems, the less time you have to worry about your own situation.

I found setting goals and challenges was a good way for me to not only move forward but to be able to measure just how I was progressing. The more I achieved, the more I wanted to achieve. Instead of worrying about what I could no longer do, I concentrated on what I could do. This was an enormous relief for me and made me think and feel positive.

How to overcome adversity may be different for each person. But it is important to have a plan and work towards reaching it. Do this and you will remain a well balanced person who can reach great levels of recovery from most serious illnesses.

You may like to listen to and watch a webinar that I made on this topic, or you can read my book ‘Thank God I Had a Stroke’ to follow my story on just what I went through and how I overcame the many problems I experienced.

Tips and Hints

You can help yourself to overcome your adversity by setting goals and reaching them; by having a plan and following it; by helping others and concentrating less on your own misfortunes; and by remaining positive and determined at all times.

26 thoughts on “How To Overcome Adversity

  1. Debbie Boulier

    Staying positive while facing adversity it extremely important, and also for the family as well. It can be very difficult to stay positive during those times, but for the health of the patient it is so vital. It also helps so much with the outcome of the illness.

  2. Dan Reid

    I’ve had my own troubles and tribulations in my life. One thing I learned in therapy is ‘resiliency’ and this, along with clearly defined goals as you mentioned and a lingering positive attitude will help you overcome adversity, no how matter how big or small.

  3. Jacob Rolling

    My mother is ill and I have told her she needs to stay positive. I will forward this article to her.

  4. Ana B.

    Great inspiration! I’m in agreement with you — it’s really helpful to set goals for yourself when you’re recovering. It keeps you focused and less concerned about your illness, so you achieve more and you get better more quickly.

  5. Robbie

    My mom recently had a stroke and I called her and read her this article and let her know that it was important for her to set goals for herself she was also encouraged by someone who went through this and is now recovering.

  6. Lisa Perkins

    I can’t express to you enough, just how much I admire your Strength, Courage, & the way you can take a negative and turn it into a positive!! What a True Inspiration you’ve been to my Family and I……. We can never Thank You Enough!!!

  7. Kris H

    This article really hit home with me. I’ve been suffering through some personal health issues lately and have been only thinking of myself. I’m gonna set goals and attempt to be more positive to those around me.

  8. Wendy Mitchell

    You do need to set goals, as it can distract you from whatever illness you are recovering from. It just gets your mind on more positive things.

  9. Jack

    I have an uncle who is not in good health but he is definitely a firm believer in still helping others. Which as someone on the outside, I can definitely see his helping others help him as well. Just that positive attitude helps him so much!

  10. MBW

    Like in any survival situation, setting goals and keeping up your moral is just as important as any other thing you can do to stay alive. Very informative and helpful.

  11. Nicky Evans

    I have been reading your blog and following your journey… and each post leaves me feeling that you must be one very special person! To face such a huge health challenge and still turn it into a positive experience takes enormous strength and integrity! I love all the tips and advice you give to people… luckily i have never suffered a serious illness, but family members have faced brain aneurysms, cancer and losing limbs.. all of them faced their situations differently. I suffer from ptsd and depression and your post has given me a wake up call.. maybe it is time to set myself some achievable goals and look to help others rather than concentrate on myself all the time. Please keep sharing your experiences, you are an inspiration to many.. i will go and check out your webinar now.

  12. Jane

    I used to think it was impossible to overcome misfortunes. I often thought I was the only who endured horrible ordeals. I was able to get out of the hardship by setting small goals such as learning something new each day. Life requires structure and setting goals is an important element.

  13. Jenny McArdle

    I think positivity is absolutely key with this – each day has its own challenges. Best wishes to you.

  14. Sam Wallace

    It is easiest to set short term goals and build up to your long term goals. Set goals that will only take one or two days and progressively get to bigger and harder goals.

  15. Max Torini

    This was excellent advice. By being realistic with your goals and meeting ones you set you will do just fine in life.

  16. Gary R

    This is great advice for anyone who is dealing with a serious illness. I am suffering from COPD which is a terrible respiratory disease which is chronic. I just try to do everything that I can to maintain my health, lots of exercise, eating the right foods, and so on. I won’t give in to my ailment!

  17. Samantha R.

    Yes we sometimes tend to forget that no matter how hard are life is the grass isn’t always greener on the other side and it could be a lot worse.

  18. Jaime

    Great advice! It is so hard to remain positive but having a plan helps to regain control of your life and following through keeps your mind occupied.


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