Each and every person that has ever lived had to face obstacles. They are a part of life. We can however choose how we react to them. Sometimes it helps viewing life as an obstacle course focuses us on finding a way around, over, under or through them. I sometimes think that a defining part of a persons character is how they deal with life's ups and downs.
A friend of mine and a beautiful soul recently received some bad news. She will be forced to fight cancer for the third time. It is unfair. And makes even those with faith ask the familiar question, why do people suffer? This wonderful person does not deserve, it is not her fault, it is not a consequence of something she has done.
Yet she is bravely attempting to deal with news like a lady - with a graceful determination.
You can not hear news like this without asking why?
Obstacles by their very nature change a person, they force you change, grow and adapt. If they stop or delay you on your life's journey slowing down can help you choose the right path. I have to admit that with hindsight some of the difficulties, which were terrible at the time, resulted in something for the best in the long run. And some...well, surviving them made me stronger.
Anyone choosing a career in writing have chosen a path filled obstacles and rejections.
Listen to what Og Mandino says about this very thing in his book, 'The Greatest Salesman in the World':
“First, you must prove to me, and more important to yourself, that you can endure the life of a salesman for it is not an easy lot you have chosen. Truly, many times have you heard me say that the rewards are great if one succeeds but the rewards are great only because so few succeed. Many succumb to despair and fail without realising that they already possess all the tools needed to acquire great wealth. Many others face each obstacle in their path with fear and doubt and consider them as enemies when, in truth, these obstructions are friends and helpers. Obstacles are necessary for success because in selling, as in all careers of importance, victory comes only after many struggles and countless defeats. Yet each struggle, each defeat, sharpens your skills and strengths, your courage and your endurance, your ability and your confidence and thus each obstacle is a comrade-in-arms forcing you to become better… or quit. Each rebuff is an opportunity to move forward; turn away from them, avoid them, and you throw away your future.”
Part of living is being an example and a strength for other people. Your success in overcoming obstacles will be a strength and an encouragement to others.
We’re not all “salesman” but every course of action has its bumps and ruts. We can and should learn from each one. The choice is ours.