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Effective Way of Overcoming Adversity

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Helen Keller once said, “Although the world is full of suffering, it is also full of the overcoming of it.” Even though the world has its problems, there are so many people that push aside those issues and change themselves or others to make the world a better place. If people let their adversity get in the way of their success then they will never go anywhere. They will be stuck in one place for the majority of their lifetime and will be thinking, is this how life will be from now on? Miserable and Depressing? Make a change to overcome your adversity. The most effective ways people can overcome adversity is by surrounding themselves with loved ones, having a positive mindset and persevering through the rough times.

One of the most effective ways people can overcome adversity is by surrounding themselves with loved ones. In the story from common lit, ‘Orphans Lonely Beginnings Reveal How Parents Shape a Child’s Brain’ the author, Jon Hamilton; a journalist and a science correspondent for NPR, explains how children with no parent figure in the household struggle with normal brain development. He uses personal experiences from Izidor Ruckel and an expert opinion from Charles Nelson. The more neglect the children face, the more they struggle with brain development, anxiety and even worse, depression. Children in orphanages don’t have a parent figure in their life so they have it worse. Ruckel describes the situation he lived in when he was in an orphanage and the norm was having the children smacked around. These children were treated horribly and for what reason? Ruckel did however get the benefit of the doubt because a worker at the orphanage treated him like her own child. He said that he couldn’t have been luckier to have such a kind, loving person help him out. The author uses Ruckel’s personal experience to tell the story from another perspective, ‘Then, when Ruckel was 5 or 6, his surrogate mother was electrocuted trying to heat bath water for the children in her care. Ruckel was on his own in a place where beatings, neglect and boredom were the norm.'(Hamilton) Since Ruckel and many others in the Romanian orphanage didn’t have any loved ones by their side, this just proves having your loved ones by your side will be very effective in your lifetime. Furthermore, from Psych Central, the author Tiffany Mason, a professional life and relationship coach, describes having loved ones by your side/positive people and how it helps people overcome their adversity. She says that when people are facing adversity, having positive people in their life can make them have a better outlook on things and can make their mood change for the good. When people are facing adversity and are in an emotional state of mind, it’s important for them to surround themselves with supportive and encouraging people so they know that they have people believing them instead of just themselves. They know that if things don’t get any better, than they have people that love them to fall back on to keep them going on the right track. “When experiencing adversity, it’s crucial in your development to surround yourself with people who are accepting of your flaws, mistakes, and imperfections. Overcoming adversity can be a challenge; when you have a supportive team helping you move forward, it’s much easier to accept yourself.” (Mason) When people have their loved ones by their side while facing adversity, they realize how much of an impact they have on them. They help individuals through thick and thin and support them even when they feel like they can’t go on anymore.

Having a positive mindset doesn’t just improve an individual mentally, it can help them become a better athlete, student and even an overall better person. Not to mention, having a positive mindset can also help people overcome adversity. In the story, “The New Survivors” the author Pamela Weintraub describes survivors who experienced having cancer. She uses personal experiences from these survivors to prove that even though they battled this horrible disease, they grew so much from the battle and found a way to stay strong. She tells the story of Jasan Zimmerman and how he had been battling this disease since he was a child. Death was right around the corner for him but he didn’t let that stop him from living his life. Part of the reason why he came out of this battle alive was because he had a positive mindset to offset all of the bad things going on at that time. There were times when he didn’t want to try anymore but still, he didn’t let that stop him. While battling this disease, he wasn’t in the right state of mind but once he overcame it, he was healthy, free and most importantly, happy. “In the past, the very word cancer summoned images of hopelessness, pain, and death; little thought was given to life after cancer because it was considered brief. The cancer ‘victim’ was seen as the passive recipient of ill fate and terrible luck. No more.” (Weintraub) Furthermore, from Steve Rizzo’s article, “You Can Overcome Any Challenge With A Positive Attitude” he describes his brothers situation and how he became disabled as a result of the Vietnam War. Rizzo was devastated to hear the news about his brother but what he didn’t give up was his positive attitude. However, Steve Rizzo wasn’t the only one with a positive attitude, when he was holding Michaels hand, he felt him squeeze his hand very tight. Michael was aware of what was going on and he knew right then and there that he wasn’t just going to give up on his life. He kept a positive attitude which saved his life. Without his positive attitude, he would never been able to survive this tragedy. “My brother Michael’s experience proves to me that with the right attitude, even with only one foot of intestine, all you have to do is put one foot in front of the other.” (Rizzo) Having a positive mindset is very important when an individual is facing adversity because it allows them to realize that there is still a chance that things will get better.

However, while most believe that positive thinking can help an individual overcome adversity, others don’t. Brianna Wiest wrote an article called, “Positive Thinking Won’t Change Your Life, Adversity Will” and in this article, she states that “positive thinking can for sure improve ones life but it won’t make any drastic changes. It is only forcing an individual to respond to situations that are outside of their comfort zone that will push them to reconstruct their self-image and change one day at a time.”(Wiest) According to Wiest, if one wants to overcome their adversity then having a positive mindset would not be the solution. This however is not the case because when an individual has a positive outlook on things, then they are automatically on the road to recovery. Having a positive outlook, loved ones by an individual’s side and the ability to never give up on hope are all effective ways to overcome adversity. Again, from “The New Survivors”, Jasan Zimmerman is one of the many survivors that never gave up on hope during the rigorous time. He persevered through the hardships and spoke out as an advocate to many others struggling to let them know that they are not alone. When hope feels gone, it’s not.     

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