12 Feb 2018
Overcoming challenges. Leaving a legacy
We all know that some days the sun shines and life is honkey dorey. But then there also those days where we feel lost and have no idea how to move forward, when the challenge we face just seem too much.
Even when times are tough, I am so blessed to always have friends & followers helping to hang on in the good and bad times, such as Robert de Monk, who encouraged me last week with these words: “But hanging in, is often more tough than either hanging on or letting go!!! Can only imagine the battle that you must be enduring at present, but hang in there my friend like the Champion you are…you will get through this race as well & come out even stronger & wiser for it at the end of it all. Your racing, your amazing race & training pics have always been a source of great inspiration to us, “aspiring wanna-be great athletes 😊,” and just want you to know, I for one am even more inspired by the way way you’ve approached & choose to take on this ‘little’ mishap of an injury in your life…Please keep the blog going, as your journey is truely an inspiration and I for one, am praying & believing that you will win this race as well. Thanks for always motivating & inspiring with your pics & quotes, so this morning I’m returning the favour & hope my message helps a little in your fight on this road to recovery!”
The reality in life is that at some point in life, we will all go through struggle and challenges. The great thing is, we have a choice on how we respond to it. As humans, through faith and character, we have so much potential to build an unstoppable mindset. In my journey of overcoming this “injury” – or as one of my friends, Kate Dawson, wisely pointed out: “I think it can be a metaphor for everyone – it doesn’t really mean physical injury – it means personal injury – a change to what we know and love, separation, divorce, death of a loved one, illness etc. could all sit in this description too – and I think if you replace “injury” in your writings for any one of these things, the feelings, emotions and struggles are the same..., I have learned the following:
- Turning to the Lord is the only answer.”Every challenge presents an opportunity for the Lord to display his faithfulness and love. Instead of yielding to thoughts of fear and failure, make a commitment to trust God, even when you don’t know what the next day will bring. Train yourself to look beyond what you can see to what He sees.”
- Struggle and challenges build character. Often the moments in our life we are most proud of are the ones where we overcame adversity.
- Surround yourself with a support team. Family & friends is crucial in challenging times, and we realise just how valuable they are to see us through the tough times (and of course the good ones ;-))
- Focus on the positive. Make a list of things you can control and things you can do as opposed to focusing on what you can’t do and what is beyond your control. And then go out and DO them!
- Writing down my thoughts has allowed me get out of my head and separate myself from the impact of the experience. It brings the conscious brain into play while reducing the effects of the unconscious, emotional brain.
- Exercise is still the key to productivity and positivity. Even if its just something everyday, this has helped to keep me sane and release those much needed endorphins.
- I have continued interact with nature. Spending time in the serenity of the great outdoors (even though not in the way I am used to), has kept me in awe of His creation and my blessings. It is also known to improve quality of life and brain functioning as well.
- I have started making a list of all the “summits” I wish to reach in the rest of my life. This has given me something to focus on and to work towards. Writing down our goals keeps us motivated and we are more likely to succeed.
- I have learnt to be still (something I have really struggled with in the past). For 10 minutes a day, sit in silence without distractions and just be with your thoughts. This will improve your ability to focus on finding solutions to challenges and creating the life you want to live, as opposed to being at the mercy of circumstances.
- Get something done. Ticking something off that list, no matter how small, makes me feel like I have accomplished something and helps me to stay motivated to find answers to overcome my current challenge.
I have also discovered that I am reading a lot more :-). A piece that spoke to my heart, was about Leaving a Legacy in Henning Gericke’s Champion’s Diary: “Every second of the day you leave an imprint; a mark on someone out there. Whether it is a positive or negative impression is up to you. The ultimate challenge is whether we can leave behind a quality imprint of ourselves. Live life to the fullest, and strive to be the best you can possibly be. That is leaving a legacy!
Believe in something much bigger than you. That is the first step in leaving a legacy. Winston Churchill said, ” You make a living by what you get back, but you make a life by what you give.” Mother Teresa left a legacy by living a simple life, caring and giving. This powerful poem, that she called The Final Analysis, says it all:
People are often unreasonable, illogical, and self-centered;
Forgive them anyway.
If you are kind, people may accuse you of selfish, ulterior motives;
Be kind anyway.
If you are successful, you will win some false friends and some true enemies;
If you are honest and frank, people may cheat you;
Be honest and frank anyway.
What you spend years building, someone may destroy overnight;
If you find serenity and happiness, they may be jealous;
Be happy anyway.
The good you do today, people will often forget tomorrow;
Do good anyway.
Give the world the best you have, and it may never be enough;
Give the world the best you’ve got anyway.
You see, in the final analysis, it is all between you and God;
It was never between you and them anyway.”
So let’s all make it our challenge to live life to the fullest, to help others as much as we can, strive to be the best we can possibly be and to leave a legacy!!