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Where Does Strength Lie?

4 June 2020

During times of crisis it is quite normal to feel stressed, confused or scared. If you are not feeling a bit emotionally lost during a crisis you’re experiencing, you might not have fully accepted the reality of the situation just yet. These feelings do not make you weak, they provide you with an opportunity to be strong. Your actions during and after a crisis will determine your strength.

It is easy to fall for the bait of primitive emotions of panicked reaction and irrational decision making. But, when we give ourselves some time to ruminate, we have better access to reasoning and perspective. Making us less prone to reckless and impulsive decisions.

Marcus Aurelius once said, “What stands in the way becomes the way.”

There is no way of getting over a crisis, the only way is through. We are often reluctant to change, but humanity's greatest strength lies in our ability to adapt.

The challenge is getting out of our comfort zones. Whether the whole world is in a state of flux, or it’s just your immediate situation that’s in a state of crisis, you are the only person who is able to change yourself.

The more we expose ourselves to different routines, habits and environments, the quicker the brain learns to adapt without panicking. After performing a new routine enough times it will require less effort and become your default pattern.

It’s also through this journey of adaptation that we start to see our strengths, and these may be different from our qualifications, accolades and experiences. Identifying our strengths and moving into spaces where we can explore and use our strengths helps us begin to live a more fulfilling life. Whilst your crisis may have ended your life as you knew it, it may also be an opportunity to step out, step up and step into a more fulfilling life.

That being said, we should only be looking to adapt the things which are adaptable. If we are stressed about something that is out of our control, spending time trying to change it is going to be in vain. In fact, it will probably have the opposite of the intended result and make us more stressed. We might find peace in letting these things go, and this is another strength that we can develop.

It can be mildly infuriating when people are overly modest about their accomplishments, we may want to shake them and say, “Look at what you’ve achieved!” But it’s easy to become so wrapped up in a goal that we are trying to reach that it’s difficult to see how far we’ve come. It is one of the greatest pitfalls of gradual adaptation. By always looking at where you could be, you don’t appreciate where you are right now.

If you are trying to adapt but don’t know how, if you feel like you have made some recklessly impulsive decisions, know that you have the strength to change, the strength to overcome and the strength to do things differently.

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