At times life can be so wonderful with smooth breezes and the soft distant laughter of summertime fun in the distance. During those moments it feels like nothing can go wrong and anything anyone says or does can have no effect on the bliss that envelops you. Then, like a train crash, one thing like a family death or illness can destroy all peacefulness within you and consume you with fear, hatred and self-doubt. My life was drastically changed by a challenge thrown my way that I, or nobody else, could prepare for. Overcoming challenges in your life is important because it promotes healthy growth in a person.
I was raised in a circumstance that many would categorize as unfortunate. I was brought up by a single father with a low income. There were always problems with the rent, bills and day to day necessities and there were always problems with his health. The interesting thing is that, when you are used to living amongst tragedy you fail to recognize it as abnormal. Whatever you are raised with, you feel is typical, so when people still describe my upbringing as bad, I still tend to be taken aback. The real challenge that shifted my life was when my father’s diabetes worsened and he was diagnosed with cancer. The distressing news changed my life, the matter of rent and utilities became more of a pressing matter than it was before and at the same time I had to concern myself with the emotional stress that comes along with knowing that you parent’s life can be taken away from you at any moment. Struggling was set to an all-time high and I did not know how me and my father were going to crawl out of our hole of despair. That’s the thing about challenges, when you are first put in contact with one, it seems like they are undefeatable and the only option you have is to bow down to its mercy. Instead I met my challenge head on and created Enigma Studios, which is my own business where we make websites and games and software for companies. This was no easy task, for, I had to teach myself code and work at the same time. The difficulty of balancing those two things was a challenge in itself but the end result proved worth it. I was able to pay half of the rent and purchase my own car through the company I created. Facing the challenge that was thrown my way affected me positively because it taught me that my fate is in my own hands and if I really want to change the outcome I am capable of it. Giving up is never an option and ultimately, leads to more problems coming your way. Many of the good things in life are handed to you after hard work, my business may have never been mine if I wouldn’t have learned a complicated skill and work a job at the same time.
Lance Dale wrote, “Expect obstacles and face them head on. They are going to come up so the way you handle them is what makes all the difference.” This relates to my father’s medical debacle because it was a problem that I could have easily given into and done nothing about but sulk. By me dealing with the obstacle head on caused for it to have a positive outcome and lead to the creation of my studio that probably would not have happened if I handled the situation differently. Dealing with a challenge is more important than avoiding it at all. Life is about turning negatives into positives, which decreases the amount of challenges that enters one’s life. If your perspective sees challenges as merely small obstacles, the amount of problems that will come your way will decrease. This happened to me. Now, when I’m faced with a challenge I handle it better because of the situation I had to overcome. Dale’s quote encourages those faced with a complication to deal with it first, no matter how difficult it may seem and figure out a solution. The solution has a great chance of leading to a better outcome than the life one was living before, like me and my own business. Finding a solution and falling victim to tragedy is determined by the way you handle a challenge, which is what my story shows and what Dale is expressing.
The disappointing thing about life is that we cannot avoid bad situations and challenges being thrown our way. What makes the difference between a life full of problems and a life with growth is the way a challenge is met and handled. My dad’s diagnosis and our stability being on the line was a dark cloud that I thought would rain on us forever when instead the cloud passed and it revealed itself to be a sunny day. Learning experiences are often gained through surviving difficult situations and prove to be useful in our everyday lives.