As much as we don’t like to go through difficult times, they are necessary for us to become the person we know we can be.
Depending on how strong we are mentally, low points can either devastate us, or they can elevate us to a new level of understanding, behaviour and performance.
Low points can come in many forms including:
- Health-related challenges.
- Financial challenges.
- Loss of a job or a business failure.
- Losing someone close to us.
- End of a relationship — personally or professionally.
One thing that’s certain is we’ll all face our fair share of challenges or low points in life. How we deal with them will determine who we become and how we think of ourselves, others and the world.
There are many people who have used low points to reach new levels of success. Here are three of them:
- Oprah Winfrey. Even though she suffered physical and emotional abuse as a young child, she did not let her past prevent her from following what she was passionate about, which was to create a platform for people to share and be heard around the world.
- Michael Jordan. Despite being cut from his high school basketball team, through perseverance and hard work, he went on to become one of the most recognisable sports star in the world, and will forever be remembered as one of the greatest basketball players of all time.
- Albert Einstein. Even though he had learning difficulties as a young child and was considered different from other kids, Einstein is credited for some of the most important scientific breakthroughs in the history of the world.
Rather than seeing low points as horrible or demoralising, we can train ourselves to use them to become better in everything we do. Here are five reasons why low points can be truly transformational and become the springboard for major changes and improvements in our lives.
- They can inspire you to learn new things. Low points resulting in failure is feedback that we need to become better at what we do and how we do them. They can cause us to want to develop further by acquiring new knowledge, skills or behaviours, which ultimately will make us better in every way.
- They will enable you to handle new adversities or low points better. Once we’ve experienced something difficult and have been able to overcome it, we’ve created new mental associations for how to deal with similar things in the future. It’s no different to developing physical muscles — we’ve now developed our mental muscles which will only make us stronger.
- They will give you a greater sense of appreciation for the good times. Overcoming challenging situations in our lives will help increase our awareness and appreciation of the good things we have in life. Not everything in our lives are difficult or a struggle. We always have plenty of things we can be grateful for.
- They can be a turning point or a wake-up call in life. Oftentimes, challenges are signs we must stop and look at what we are doing in life. It is very easy to get caught up in things that do not matter, so when we go through a low period in life, it can help put things in perspective for us and make us focus on what truly matters.
- They will reveal the people you can trust and count on. It is true that adversity reveals people’s true character. Some people will do all they can to help someone who is in need, whereas others will not want to be involved. When we do turn things around, we will know who we should trust moving forward.
We always have a choice as to how we deal with the low points in our lives. Those who are able to extract important learnings from those experiences will be able to handle other challenges in life, whereas those who succumb to setbacks, will find it very difficult to create the results they want.
Question: What could be another reason why low points can make us better at what we do and how we behave?
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