Anyone on the path to success will be faced with adversity at some point or another. What happens to you doesn’t matter as much as how you “handle” what happens to you. Your reaction will determine your outcome.

Here are some tips from the teachings of Sri Chinmoy on how to deal with adversity. You can read more helpful self-empowerment articles HERE

Don’t Give Up

Sometimes we take difficulties as a sign to give up or ‘it is not meant for us’ But, if we look at people who have achieved great things, almost invariably they recovered from initial set backs. The great Abraham Lincoln had so many set backs before becoming US President. (Lost job and defeated for state legislature (1832), Failed in business (1833), Had nervous breakdown(1936) Defeated for Senate (1854,1858). Yet he became one of the most influential presidents of all time. If at first we don’t succeed we need to have faith in our goal and keep going.

Don’t Blame Others / the Situation

When things go wrong we are apt to blame other people and other situations. The blame game may help us feel a little bit better, but, it doesn’t help us deal with the adverse forces we are faced with. Really successful people don’t have time to blame the situation as this can easily encourage a sense of self-pity that is not helpful. We have to take where we are and do what we can to improve our situation. Rather than complaining, if we focus on what we can do we will be much more effective.

Learn From Adversity

It may be a bit of a cliche, but, it really is difficult situations which give us a great opportunity for self-improvement. If life was easy we would just become complacent and too laid back. It is adversity that forces us to re-evaluate our pre-conceived ideas and ingrained habits. Adversity is the shock that can lead to a deeper and more thoughtful attitude. If we see adversity as a necessary event for our own self-improvement half the fear of adversity is lost. We no longer see the difficult situation as our enemy but as part of our life.

Don’t Worry

We cannot change things beyond our control, so why worry over the inevitable? One of the difficult aspects of adverse situations is the uncertainty and worry that can accompany a deterioration in events. Maybe we worry over our financial situation. But, we shouldn’t let the worry get out of control and become excessive. Rather than using our mental energy for worrying about things over which we have no control, if we use this energy for doing what we can, our situation will definitely improve.


Similar to the last point, detachment helps to be less depressed by the difficulties we face. The worst response is to feel guilty because of difficulties that have arrived. There is only so much we can do when faced with certain situations. We should judge our inner response not the outcome. Sometimes we can be our own worst critic and blame ourselves for things beyond our control. If we have difficulties with the attitude of friends and family – what can we do? Our responsibility is to do the right thing and respond with a compassionate attitude. But, we cannot change others or make bad situations disappear. Don’t feel bad for things that are beyond our control.