THE QUESTION

What doesn't kill you ...


It's official: A new study concludes that experiencing a few "adverse life events," such as a natural disaster or losing a job, really does make you stronger in the long run. (See story:
http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052702303496104575560261828332840.html )
People who sail through and those who face more frequent adversity usually don't fare as well. The researcher says ''people are more resilient than we think." Are setbacks actually a key to success? Have you ever faced major adversity that you weren't able to overcome?

Posted by Success Editors on November 15, 2010 12:00 AM
FROM THE PANEL

Oh, come on!

Your ability to cope is based on how you have interpreted what's happened to you, what you value most and your born-in mental mix, not simply the problems you did or did not have in your life.

Posted by Garrison Wynn, on November 15, 2010 4:52 PM

Blessings in disguise

When we have a setback, we have the choice of deciding if it will be a pause in our life's story, or the end of our pursuit of success.

Posted by Willie Jolley, on November 15, 2010 12:00 AM

Courageous women

How do people, like many of my students, prevail against long odds? They're determined to succeed, and believe they can. They ask for help. And they don't let setbacks turn into backsliding.

Posted by Patricia McGuire, on November 15, 2010 12:00 AM

Hit the reset button

Humans are wonderfully adaptable. Those of us who have had major setbacks know that we've been through it before and survived. Thus, we are mentally stronger.

Posted by Virginia Bianco-Mathis, on November 15, 2010 12:00 AM

My ABC's

My ABC's -- Adversity, Belief, and Courage -- have helped me to develop a psychological immune system to overcome just about every challenge I've ever faced.

Posted by Tynesia Boyea-Robinson, on November 15, 2010 12:00 AM

Adversity's advantage

Knowing you can survive serious setbacks can bolster confidence and courage. People who have had to confront terrible loss are more skeptical about conventional wisdom. And they have a much better sense of priorities.

Posted by Nell Minow, on November 15, 2010 12:00 AM

Then what?

When faced with adversity, one person rises to the occasion while the other is beaten down. It all comes down to how you frame your life circumstances.

Posted by Seth Kahan, on November 15, 2010 12:00 AM

FEATURED COMMENTS

tarheeler: I tend to think that adversity draws upon the pre-existing character of the individual and his/her life experience. As a pedestrian, I was ...

Mykelb: My experience has proven the same. Except I think it is a human trait that is hard-wired to survival, otherwise, we wouldn't have lasted 40...

rikki11: I would agree with the findings. Injured at 16; I persevered through two years of tough physical therapy. That experience has given me the c...

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