The Life-Affirming Power Of OVERCOMING



We each have our stones that we must push up a hill.  Some stones are bigger.  Some hills are steeper.  But the nature of life is to deal with hills and stones.  We are hard-wired to strive for well-being and balance.  Overcoming challenges is a life-long journey.  How well we overcome those challenges defines the sense of fulfillment, meaning and happiness we feel as we live out our life.


Overcome:  to succeed in dealing with a problem or difficulty


Each time we overcome a challenge, large or small, we affirm the purpose of our life. I believe humanity has evolved over time in relation to how we react to challenge.  The essence of life is challenge.  Virtually every waking moment of every day presents multiple challenges.


From the moment I opened my eyes this morning, challenges presented themselves… I was tired and didn’t want to get up… I was hungry but didn’t want to break my DBS Diet intermittent daily fast that ends at 11am… my back hurt from some chores yesterday but I want to mow today… I felt lazy and wondered if I could postpone mowing today… I felt the pressure of writing this post that must be done by tonight…  I’m uncertain what I should do about the issue we’re having with our water softener… and on and on and on. 


Nothing earth-shaking, but each is a challenge that needs to be overcome.  And how quickly, efficiently, creatively, decisively I deal with each challenge affects how I feel about myself today.


Some challenges are more intimidating.


 I remember the moment that the doctor informed me that I have cancer and would need major surgery.  I was overwhelmed.  How I chose to deal with that challenge affected my life every moment since.


So many challenges can be life-changing.  My granddaughter was diagnosed with diabetes at age 2.  The determination, creativity, perseverance and sensitivity with which she and her parents dealt with this challenge is inspiring.  She’s graduating this year from high school with straight A’s and a scholarship to a prestigious college… she earned a black belt in Tae Kwon-Do… she’s a certified yoga instructor… a world-class baker… and she’s an all-around terrific human.


Do you think HOW she overcame this “disability” will affect how she deals with the rest of her life?  You bet it will.  Overcoming challenges is life-affirming.  And it’s habit-forming. The more you successfully overcome challenges, the more confidence you have to overcome future challenges.


Some challenges can be overwhelming.


Serious disability, disease, injury, mental illness, trauma, grief – these are major challenges that some among us face.  Sometimes a total overcoming of the challenge is just not possible.  But every challenge, however daunting, has the potential for incremental victories.  For some, even the most minor of victories is thrilling.


We know about Stephen Hawking, Helen Keller, Franklin D. Roosevelt, Ludwig Van Beethoven, Bethany Hamilton, Christopher Reeve and many others who overcame major disabilities to make major contributions that inspire us.  But every day, every moment, people worldwide are dealing with a full range of challenges.  Each will be overcome… or not.  How we deal with each challenge will affect our life in differing degrees.  Each is a learning experience.  Our brain LEARNS from each experience – positive or negative.


Learning how to overcome challenges with determination, preparation, strength, brainpower, poise, empathy and morality is a lifelong journey.  And the more aware we are that treating each challenge as an opportunity to grow will not only enrich our life today, it will create a pattern for how rich our life can be in the future.




“Don't compare yourself with other people;

compare yourself with who you were yesterday...”

Jordan B. Peterson



Focus on overcoming each life challenge, large or small, as an opportunity to set yourself up for even greater success in your future life… learning HOW to overcome anything.


Make OVERCOMING  a consistent way of life in YOUR life.


Overcoming is the most life-affirming, success-predictive task you can learn to be good at as you progress through your journey.  Work at it.  Get good at it.


Make not giving in to obstacles part of your character.  Never feel sorry for yourself for more than a moment.  Overcome.  Every task.  Every day.  Steel yourself against the excuses and distractions.  Become a master of resilience.


An ageless life is a life of overcoming.  Put your whole mind and body into it.


Overcome anything and everything.


You can do it.


You may enjoy my companion post:


You can check out an archive of my previous posts here.


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