This One Word Will Help You Through Your Next Challenging Experience

gumption

There is a word that has been hiding under rock for quite a while now. It’s a word that describes an essential part of our make up however this word has gone missing of late.

This was highlighted last week when my son mentioned that if they didn’t want to do sport at school they could just sit it out during that session and not participate. This was compounded when my daughter came home from the school swimming carnival and I asked her how she went in her races and she said, “Dad, I didn’t have any races. We just watched.”

“Eh??? You mean you don’t have compulsory races for everyone??”

“No Dad, it’s only for those that choose to”, was the response.

What happened to those days of compulsory sitting in your team line in your swimmers on cold wet grass for hours as you push through race after race on swimming carnival day?

Then a question popped into my head…is our society collectively making life soft and easy, as we constantly seek the most pleasurable, easy experience? Are we avoiding challenges and toil for the sake of an easier life? Of course why wouldn’t we, but is this coming with a price? I liken it to going to the gym and having someone lift your weights for you so you don’t have to strain. It’s an easier path in the beginning, but we reap no long-term rewards as a result. When we are finally confronted by a challenging experience, we are weak and soft and unable to persevere through it.

I’m just as guilty as anyone. I grew up forgoing daily treats during the 40 days of Catholic lent. Every weekend we had early Sunday mass in either a freezing church in winter at 7am or at times a humid hot mass in summer. We had daily chores to be fulfilled on the farm and then Saturdays it was no play until lunchtime after all the farm work was completed. We just got down and did the work, knowing this was part of life. Yet now, there’s no list of jobs on the fridge door for my children to fulfil before they can go out and have their play.

Times have changed, as they do, and knuckling down and doing the ‘hard stuff’ seems to be a thing of the past for many of us around the world, especially children. As soon as things get a little bit challenging we move on to the next job, relationship, or glossy thing that will grab our attention. We have filled our lives up with glamour and gloss and our attention will shift quickly looking for the next pleasurable thing to elevate us. We feel deprived easily and fall into a depression when the pleasure is unable to be found. There are currently 30 millions Americans on anti-depressants.

Is this partly a result of the ‘spiritual movement’? We are often told to take the path of least resistance and to flow through life with ease. All wise words for sure, but can it be taken too literally? Which brings me to the word of the week: GUMPTION

I asked some students if they’d even heard of this word and they thought it was a cleaning product! (Well they were technically correct, as it is a cleaning product, but that’s not the gumption I was speaking of.)

Gumption is grit, guts, and strength. The ability to overcome obstacles, put your head down and push on through the difficult challenges. This is where we find our resolve. It’s in those times that we tap into resourcefulness and inner strength. It’s in these times we embrace stoicism. Another rare word in today’s world.
Lebanese-American scholar and author of the Black Swan, Nassim Taleb, once said:
“A Stoic is someone who transforms fear into prudence, pain into transformation, mistakes into initiation, and desire into undertaking.”
Stoic: Strength Through Overwhelming Incidents of Challenge

An axe gets sharpened through the friction of grinding it against the stone. Diamonds are formed out of heat and pressure. An athlete achieves success through grit and toil.

We have a mighty strength within us that grows in those challenging times, just as your muscles grow under the duress of lifting the weights. Gumption is your teeth gritting, roaring lion of courage within you that will carry you through your next challenging experience and see you stronger and more powerful on the other side.

Are you ready to embrace the next challenge with a roar?

If you would like some assistance with gumption then the Empowerment Series is for you! Here you will receive 3 x 1 hour audios on living a life of purpose, manifesting abundance, and finding love. This is what a previous listener had to say about the Empowerment Series:
Your empowerment series talked straight to my heart and inspired me to be love.
So thank you, thank you, thank you for all your hard work and for putting all that knowledge in such a beautiful and simple way.” – Susana V.
You will also receive a companion book for notes and three ebook versions of the audios. Click here to find out more.

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Why Your Set-Backs Are AWESOME For You!

resilienceHave you felt that life is a bit of a challenge lately?

Have things just not gone your way or turned out how you expected it to?

Some days you feel you have been knocked down and it’s just hard to get back up again.

I know, I’ve been there before. So you get glum, you think “Yeh typical this has happened to me.” You think life sucks and spiral down into a deep malaise. Next thing you are making decisions that support your new predicament and the self-sabotage process starts all over again. You’re not alone.

The other night I asked the 80 people that turned up at my weekly meditation session if anyone was stressed or struggling lately…guess how many put up their hand? About 78 of them!

A big theme popping up for me lately is resilience. It’s really fascinating me that if we have the ability to look at our challenges and setbacks in a different light then it could completely change our life! I’ve played around with this lately and it’s remarkable how it affects your mood.

I’ve even applied this to my clients during their mentoring sessions in the Inner Sanctum and it’s like a huge light was turned on in their head. For instance, one client came to me with all sorts of health issues and addictions. He was beating himself up about that fact that his life had become this way. He had been spiralling into a deeper mess until he decided to come and see me. So I said “AWESOME! I’m so glad that your life finally became uncomfortable enough for you to go and do something about it. And now here you are. Isn’t that great?!” At first he gave me the weirdest look but when I explained it he started to see the value in it.

This idea has presented itself three times to me through three different people lately, which means to me that it is very relevant. First I was given a book by one of the leading brand specialists in Australia, Glen Campbell called Thick Face, Black Heart. This book discusses things like you’ve never seen before…it deals with resilience, how to have thick skin in the face of criticism, and how to keep firm with your vision and get back up when you get knocked down.

Then I was discussing with a very good mate of mine, Avnesh Ratnanesan, who is the Founder of Energesse, a book he was reading called Anti-Fragile that I mentioned the other day here. This book is all about not being so fragile, and realising that the process of 3 steps forward, two steps back then three steps forward is actually the sequence of life and when you realise this and embrace it, you’ll move through the steps back with great resilience and come out the other side with a whole new level of growth.

Then finally, I went to a great 1-day seminar held by Sam Cawthorn. This guy is a dude! He died in a head on car crash 6 years ago. He was revived; he lost his right arm and severely damaged his right leg, spent weeks in a coma, then a year in a wheel chair. Sam is an incredibly resilient guy, and saw this incident as a gift that enabled him to find an inner strength that he may not have known was there without this experience. He became a motivational speaker and was awarded Australian Youth of the Year. Now he travels the world presenting motivational talks on resilience at some of the largest business conferences on the planet.

Think of it being like those blow-up clowns that are filled with sand in the bottom. No matter how hard you hit them they just keep popping back up again!

So here’s the opportunity to test this. Find an area of your life that is, let’s say, a current challenge. Now this might not be the easiest thing to do, but try feeling some gratitude that you are feeling uncomfortable. Say to yourself, “This is such a blessing that I am being guided to tap into my resilience and discover my strength.” There is nothing that you can’t handle. You can get through anything life throws at you, and people like Sam Cawthorn are a testament to that. Unleash your resilience and surge forward. Then if you feel compelled, please share with us below how you’ve overcome an obstacle lately. It will be inspiring for us to hear about it.

And if you’d like some support working through this then please consider our mentoring sessions here. These will support you, inspire you and help you break free of those self sabotaging ways of thinking.

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