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Why it’s not about the hurdles, it’s how you react to them

My journey is one filled with hurdles. Some that I didn’t see coming. Yet, I am more thankful than ever for them.

Reacting to Hurdles

In part, due to the perseverance and utter gall, I have shown throughout this time. Whether it be realizing I wasn’t going to be a professional basketball player, or not knowing what I wanted to do for years after graduating high school. All of the problems life has thrown at me have not gone in vain. In all actuality, they have done the opposite. They have made me who I am.


If you talk to someone in your life, chances are they’ve probably faced some hurdles in their lives, some more than others. Obstacles could come in the form of something small, such as a kid not receiving the laptop they wanted for Christmas, or it could be extreme, such as the unexpected loss of a family member. Whichever it may be, we all face hurdles. What’s more pertinent, however, is how we deal with them.

In life, we can either define our circumstances or let them define us. You may have heard of the saying:

“We cannot always choose what happens to us in life, but we can choose how we react to it.”

It rings true in many ways. Life, as we know it, is always changing. Often, if not daily, we are presented with trying times and circumstances. We can choose to look at them in a positive light, regardless of how much they may change or impact us. Or, we can let them consume and damage us.


You see, we cannot always control what happens to us. Life itself is an enigma. Bad things happen to good people, good things happen to bad people, bad things happen to bad people, and good things happen to good people. That’s the way of life. There isn’t always a rhyme or reason as to why. But if one thing’s for certain, it’s Newton’s third law; “for every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction.”

Hurdles reaction

Let me ask you something. Have you ever applied for a job and didn’t get it? We’ve all been there. Either receiving a phone call explaining you did not get the job, getting an e-mail stating you didn’t get the job, or not receiving any correspondence at all. So, what did you do after your job denial? Did you wallow in self-pity and stop applying for other jobs? Well, if you’re like me, that isn’t much of an option seeing as my livelihood depends on earning an income. I know what you did or should’ve done, anyway, you kept applying.


You kept applying because you knew sitting around and feeling sorry for yourself, or even worse, not applying at all, wouldn’t accomplish anything. You knew you had to throw your name in the hat to have any chance of getting the job. Don’t get me wrong. Facing adversity isn’t uncomplicated by any stretch of the imagination.

“Yet, your reaction when facing hurdles is what’s most important.”

We can let our circumstances define us, or we can define them. By defining our circumstances, we take the reins of our lives. We no longer succumb to everyday hurdles by letting them consume our minds and affect our emotional well-being. Instead, we look and study different circumstances for what they are, from a distance. We become more mindful of them. Then, and only then, is when we can reflect and realize, the world isn’t ending. What truly matters isn’t the hurdles we face; it’s how we react to them.

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