The older we get the more important learning how to deal with adversity becomes. Especially in this time when so many of us are pursuing what we love to do, it seems important that we understand and learn how to cope with the challenges that come with believing in our dreams.

As people it benefits us to understand that pain can not only be helpful but necessary. So whether we’re working a daunting 9-5 job to the pay the bills and finance our passion or just experiencing an unprecedented amount of challenges, it’s valuable to remember that everything is working together for our good and that every difficulty has been placed in our lives to nurture the greatness that’s inside of us. But in order to gain from this notion we have to believe it. Our outlook and perception greatly determine how we go about dealing with the situations we encounter.

I’m an avid runner, have been for about thirteen years now. Often times when I’m out for a run and approach a big hill I mentally prepare myself for the increased level of difficulty that’s ahead. The higher up the hill I go the more discomfort I begin to feel. At this point my body wants to back off, it’s human nature to want to ease away from the pain. But because I know this pain is actually me getting stronger, getting better, becoming more equipped; instead of backing off I challenge myself to work harder, pump my arms faster and lift my legs higher. Even though this is a time of pain this is also a prime opportunity to excel. I’ve grown to realise that there are exceptional amounts of growth that can only be made in times of challenge and discomfort and because of this, how I perceive pain has changed. Now when I see a hill I view it as the perfect time to propel me forward. I realised that pain can be essential, substantial and progressive. When we change our mentality to pain we’re able to capitalise on its power.

In the times we live in it seems increasingly important that we don’t just learn to survive but that we encourage each other to thrive; mediocrity, living for others and not pursuing what we love to do are all factors that hinder us from living in our fullest potential. Personally, I believe it’s important to have faith and to take risks. As a collective of men I hope that we aim to do more and be more than we ever have before. This year in particular seems like a prime time to take hold of our dreams and turn them into our reality. Challenges are an unequivocal aspect of any meaningful pursuit but as the saying goes, “pain is temporary, greatness is forever”.

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