THE ART OF SURVIVING AND OVERCOMING CHALLENGES
Depending on one’s upbringing, a challenge is a word that we will have different definition of. The rule of dealing with it however is simple to understand yet hard to conquer. Many a times we listen to people either being interviewed or in motivational speeches or speaking of using crisis to create opportunities. A few will manage to do it while the rest will either flop back to a more victimized situation or use a short-cut to avoid the situation.
I must pass a thank you note to God as I came to a point where I had learnt to appreciate the challenges that I had faced all through the years. It opened my eyes and sharpened my understanding and made me bold enough to wish for more challenges. The part to accepting and making your challenge an opportunity to either grow as an individual or as a skill to use in the individuality prospect of the well-being of others is a life-time process depending on how old one is and from the time one started facing real challenges.
Challenges are meant to work on us. They don’t destroy us but sometimes unless we become wise to understand why we face a certain challenge at a certain point of life, we will keep doing the same wrong thing and more so with a rebellion. The word failure in itself is the optimum challenge and many people hate associating with it. I have this fear of failure (everyone does I guess). I fear never having a chance to honor my dreams. I fear not taking more responsibility that I should have taken. I fear never being in the right place with the right ''circumstances'' and mostly I fear trying things out and they don’t work. In time however, I learnt the goodness of challenges and here are few tips to help one rise above them:
(i) Take control
Taking full responsibility of a situation that comes in as an individual makes things a whole lot better because it gives you the power to access your possibilities. When we learn to take control rather than using the shadow of other people to avoid what is at stake, we reciprocate our wholeness into action.
Challenges should always find us ready with our identities, who we are in the long run, our visions, dreams and the greatest of all the pressure of determination and zeal. I read an interesting article of this actress who went to audition and was bluntly told she wasn’t pretty enough. The next time she was told to try out for horror movies (rarely seen in Kenya), the third time she was being offered a contract to play an evil step sister. When asked why she never gave up, she said that every time she was rejected, she learnt that her best feature was her face.
(iii) Let it flow
It is as simple as that, let water flow in a glass and it makes a perfect shape. Our challenges will always come at the time when a part of us needs improvement or when we are blind to taking responsibility of what is required of us. So let it flow.
(iv) Position yourself to victory
This is the most important step after the first three steps. We need to ensure that we are better than who we are, if it was a failed relationship, rejected proposals, failed auditions, un-responded mails. This is the time to do the don’ts and don’ts the do. This is a time to signal out the lessons and embrace them and at the same time making a few steps forward. I came to learn that most of us when we faced with a challenge/crisis/failure, we try to come out of it but forget to take a few steps outside the challenge and reflect on it. We remain stagnant and lack the will to doing something else. When you inspire to be an actor and fail, work on what creates a barrier for you not to be accepted. What hinders you from getting the roles? Find out. Ask. Get professional counseling if you have to and be ready to listen. With such an agenda one is able to maximize the full potential and to create vacuum for opportunities to be dragged in.
I am whom am today because of challenges I have faced. They gave me and still give me the potential to become more mature, to learn from my mistakes.
‘Use your challenges to train the change of failure and remember the old saying; when one window of opportunity closes, look for the other one that is opened for you.
By Vena Khaemba