HOW TO SEE THE OPPORTUNITIES IN YOUR CHALLENGES


There’re two schools of thought on the concept of challenges. One says that it’s life that daily dishes out problems and challenges to us. The other says that life neither offers us problems nor challenges, but opportunities. What’s your take?


Now, compare your answer with this truth that The Talmud - body of Jewish civil and religious law - states, “We do not see things as they are. We see things as we are.”

Bruce Schneider explains that people that are courageous see problems as situations that create fear and that when they’re able to transcend fear, what remains is opportunity. This implies that fear blinds fearful individuals from seeing opportunities buried in bad situations.

On the whole, crises can actually carry loads of gains and blessings. It all depends on our perspective. Chris Pine writes that, “The only thing you sometimes have control over is perspective. You don’t have control over your situation. But you have a choice about how you view it.” And how you view it determines how you experience it.

Generally, these are some of the ways we can really see opportunities in our challenges.

(1) Opportunities often present themselves first as problems: Scientists, inventors, innovators, entrepreneurs, are people known for seeing opportunities. How do they discover them? They do so by first seeing human needs that should be met. Needs are unsatisfied human requirements we must be satisfied.

At first human needs pose as problems, but the ways of solving those problems or meeting those needs become opportunities to make our contributions, make money, get fulfilled, and so on. That’s why you don’t have to be scared by challenges.

(2) See problems as opportunities to learn and grow: Adversities are chances we have to learn and grow. That’s why we have to see them as opportunities that throw up some new ideas, information, and data, etc, we can use as additions to our knowledge, perspective, and world view. All learning is not pleasurable, but they’re beneficial all the same.

This also means that we have to see challenges as thinking opportunities. You should use such moments to engage your mind productively in re-examination, reflecting on what you did wrongly, and meditating on what should be the way forward. Where many miss the opportunities is to use such times unproductively to fret, worry, get annoyed with themselves or even others.

(3) Be open and willing to accept our mistakes and be determined to change.
Learning from problems and being able to take advantage of them is possible only when we’re ready to accept our mistakes and make up our minds to change in ourselves. Most of the challenges we encounter in life are caused by our failures in habits of thought, feeling, or action.

So admitting where we’re weak and deciding to practically change is far more crucial than concentrating on changing the situation. Who we’re determines what happens to us. Therefore, first changing who we’re will definitely change what happens to us.

(4) Obstacles are opportunities to measure our strength: If truly we don’t see things as they’re but as we’re, then we’ve got to use problems as opportunities to build up our attitudes, habits, faith, our inner capacity and strength. Challenges really reveal how badly we want to accomplish our visions and goals, and the price we’re willing to pay.

Adversity has the effect of drawing out talents and abilities which in prosperous circumstances would have lain dormant.

(5) Focus on your goals: Obstacles are those frightening things we see when we take our eyes off our goals. One of the most empowering things in life is to clearly see where you’re going from where you’re standing. So when you concentrate on your goals, you discover what routes to take, what resources to engage, how to get them, where to approach for help, and so on.

(6) Always take personal responsibility for the change to happen. Chris Howard says that one of the strategies billionaires use to move ahead of other is that they master how to turn obstacles as windows of opportunities. He quotes John D. Rockefeller as having said that “I always tried to turn every disaster into an opportunity.” 

So don’t fear what the future may hold, but live in the anticipation of the new opportunities that will present themselves.


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