Every unpleasant change provides an opportunity for self improvement, so you can restore your success, happiness, and positive attitude. If you don’t take advantage of that opportunity, you may be unhappy and unproductive for a long, long time.

I learned that after being robbed and shot at an ATM on my way to work. For much of the one year recovery process, I was stuck in a self-righteous, angry, resentful, discouraged, and frustrated victim state. In the process, I sabotaged my success and happiness.

Eventually, I got tired of living in misery, and discovered a self help attitude that restores happiness and success because it gets us moving out of the dark places we sometimes fall into when change rocks our world. This attitude moves us into the light of a new day because it’s grounded in self improvement. The attitude is…


You might ask, “What’s the advantage of adversity?” The answer can be found in this quote by Jim Rohn, “Let life touch you. Reach into the past for something valuable, called experience. Don’t get through the day. Get from the day.”

In other words, let life touch you by allowing your challenges to teach you. Unpleasant change can reveal lessons, insights, and growth opportunities that lead to more success and happiness. That’s how your challenges give you a tremendous personal advantage.

While recovering in the hospital, I learned many lessons about how damaging unhealthy reactions are. I grew in my awareness of my unproductive knee-jerk reactions when I’m angry – withdrawing, lashing out, wallowing in negativity, blaming, and wanting to fix and change the unchangeable past. I clearly saw how I sabotaged my success and happiness when operating in my reactive mode. As a result, I grew in my ability to stop harmful reactions and respond with new and positive attitude choices and actions. I grew in my ability to express my feelings of anger and hurt in productive ways. With God’s help, I grew by developing character qualities such as self-control, patience, flexibility, a sense of humor, understanding, and the ability to forgive.

Although it may sound ridiculous, today, getting shot is one of the best things that’s ever happened to me. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t want that to happen again so I can learn more stuff; but being shot has turned out to be a gift because of the self improvement that came from that challenge. I’m not sure who I’d be, what my capabilities would be, without that growth.

All that was learned, all the attributes that were developed, help me experience more happiness and success because of how my everyday challenges can be dealt with.

All the self improvement lessons and growth from the shooting are priceless for the difference they make in my life today. Even with a trillion dollars, there is no store in the world where I could go buy gifts like deeper awareness, self-control, forgiveness, patience, and understanding. The same holds true for you.

Learning and growing requires that you accept responsibility for your reactions to change and how they sabotage your success and happiness. When you do that, you set yourself up for learning how to successfully deal with challenges on the horizon of your life that will come in time.

Winston Churchill said, “Men and women occasionally stumble over the truth, but most of them hurry off as if nothing happened.” Many people would learn from their mistakes if they weren’t so busy denying they made them. Don’t make that mistake. The only thing more painful than learning from unpleasant change is not learning from it.

Let life teach you. Every change challenge you face contains precious jewels called wisdom, lessons, and the opportunity to grow into a more capable human being.

Seen in that light, difficult challenges are gateways to more happiness and success. Life doesn’t have to be measured by what unpleasant life changes take from you. Life can also be measured by what you gain and how you grow from challenges. It’s not possible to grow, gain, and remain at your personal ground zeros.

What lessons and wisdom can you glean from your most recent challenge? What do you see as opportunities for growth? Remember…


Take advantage of that tremendous advantage.

Copyright 2007

This article content is from Bill Dyer’s Award-Winning Book,
How To Bounce Back And Be Happy When Life Blows You Down.
The award-winning book is available at: http://www.bouncebackandbehappy.com

FREE info on “257 Ways To Appreciate This Moment And Create A Life You Love”, is also available at the above website by scrolling down to the Time-Out box.

Bill Dyer
Professional Speaker/Award-Winning Author

Author: Bill Dyer
Article Source: EzineArticles.com
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