By Steve Goodier
Mark Twain once said, "By trying, we can easily learn to endure
adversity. Another man's, I mean." Actually, enduring other
people's adversity is not always easy...especially when our loved
ones suffer. But a vital ingredient to successful living is found
in creatively handling our own problems.
We all face troubles. Daily. Some are no more than minor
irritants; others will threaten our very lives. We can curse our
problems. We can feel victimized by them. We can give in to them.
We can also fight them. We can learn to live with them. And we
can even use them -- use them to help us do and become that which
may have been impossible without them.
Case in point is Marvella Bayh, former wife of Indiana Senator
Birch Bayh. She lost an eight-year struggle with cancer. It began
with a mastectomy in 1971 and ended in 1979 when Marvella was 46
years old. But listen to the legacy of hope that she left
millions of people:
"These years since cancer came to me have been the most
rewarding, the most filling, the happiest in my life." Rewarding?
Filling? Happiest? Is she really describing life with cancer? She
goes on to say this:
"I have learned to value life, to cherish it, to put my
priorities in order and to begin my long-postponed dream of being
useful in my own right."
Since her mastectomy, Marcella Bayh devoted countless hours to
American Cancer Society projects, supporting anti-cigarette
crusades and promoting school programs to teach girls to examine
their breasts for signs of cancer. One month before her death,
she was awarded the society's Hubert H. Humphrey Inspiration
Marvella Bayh's disease actually helped her to find fulfillment
during the last years of her life. What many people never
discover is that, when given a chance, problems can do that. Not
that we should go out and try to find as much trouble as
possible; as you know, trouble has a way of finding us. But those
troubles, too, can be useful.
Writer Richard Bach says, "Every problem has a gift for you in
its hands." Will you open that gift and discover just what it is
that your adversity is giving you? For that very gift, which can
only be obtained by going through those difficult times, may turn
out to be valuable beyond belief.
Steve Goodier is a professional speaker, consultant and author.
Purchase his books or sign up for his free e-newsletter here:
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