4 Strategies for Embracing Obstacles and Adversities and 8 Bonus Tips



Right now, you are where you have never been before

Back in December, I released a coaching challenge for 2020 to a number of my clients and to those folks who follow on social media. The challenge for 2020 was:


1. Who do you have to be now that you have never been before?

2. What do you have to do now that you have never done before?


Here are four strategies to help you ride through and come out on top. But, unlike common thinking, we can still thrive in the midst of a pandemic, capture opportunities, and even redesign, reconfigure, or reinvent ourselves. Nothing wrong with any of those scenarios. Resetting ourselves can be a very good thing. Listen, think carefully, in the midst of these times, who do you have to be now that you have never been before? What do you have to do now that you have never done before? Remember, right now, you are where you have never been before.


So, going forward, what can be some helpful strategies for embracing obstacles in your life. Here are four I would like to present to get you started in whatever direction that works for you.


1. Decide to embrace the obstacle or adversity

If you’re having a tough time, it can be easy to feel helpless, to even feel that you’re a victim. But it’s up to you to rise to the challenge and decide that you won’t be overwhelmed. Victim thinking will block you and prevent you from seeing the opportunities you need to see around you. 360-degree vision will be drastically reduced to 180-degrees. The results of that? A whole lot of opportunities missed. Choosing to take control and embrace your challenge is the first step in overcoming it. Look your obstacle square in the face and resolve to meet it. Playing the blame game will obscure your opportunities.


If you’re having a tough time, it can be easy to feel helpless, to even feel that you’re a victim. But it’s up to you to rise to the challenge and decide that you won’t be overwhelmed. Victim thinking will block you and prevent you from seeing the opportunities you need to see around you. 360-degree vision will be drastically reduced to 180-degrees. The results of that? A whole lot of opportunities missed. Choosing to take control and embrace your challenge is the first step in overcoming it. Look your obstacle square in the face and resolve to meet it. Playing the blame game will obscure your opportunities.


I embraced my homelessness on August 16, 2016, and it launched me into a powerful place when I took responsibility for those circumstances. Only when I took personal responsibility did I then have the power to change those circumstances. You know what? This suddenly shifted me into a 360-degree perspective and I saw the opportunities that surrounded me, even as “the homeless life coach.”


2. Be okay with discomfort

The proof that you’re embracing your obstacle is acknowledging that it doesn’t feel good. It can feel uncomfortable, heavy, even painful. But discomfort can also be a mindset. I shifted from a “surviving” mindset to a “thriving” mindset and that shook my world and perception to my advantage. It is impossible to experience exponential growth without first taking a journey through the valley of discomfort.

There are lots of life experiences that hurt at the time but end up being for your best and

highest good. From marathon training to going to the dentist to public speaking, even facing your debtors, you feel so much better once you’ve faced the worst. Remember, it won’t last forever. Don’t shrink from the bad feelings. You can ride them out!


I embraced my homelessness on August 16, 2016, and it launched me into a powerful place when I took responsibility for those circumstances. Only when I took personal responsibility did I then have the power to change those circumstances. You know what? This suddenly shifted me into a 360-degree vision and I saw the opportunities that surrounded me, even as “the homeless life coach.”


"In 2020, you will have to decide who do you have to be now that you have never been before? and what do you have to do now that you have never done before? You need to resolve these two questions because you will find yourself going where you have never gone before." - Vince Morales

3. Make sure you have a support team

You don’t have to face your obstacles alone. It can make all the difference to have people around you who are supportive, who’ll stick by you and cheer you on when you want to give up. But, do not let them carry you or allow them to have self-pity for you. I refused to let people carry me or feel sorry for us. Self-pity is worse than any drug you could take.

If you have a cheer squad, you’ll find that extra level of energy to help get you through. And you’ll be there for your friends and colleagues when they’re facing their challenges. Once you’re part of a team that has each other’s backs, none of you will have to face life’s ups and downs alone. You’ll fight together and celebrate success together.


4. Be grateful for your obstacles and adversity

Feeling gratitude for the challenges in life might sound counter-intuitive. But think about it. Accepting the challenge, resolving to meet it head-on, and overcoming it makes you a better, stronger person. Think of how good it feels to deal with a problem and solve it. To face fear and overcome it. But can I tell you this, my wife and I celebrate often, every victory, regardless of how big or small. We have a lifestyle of celebrating when we overcome.


Without obstacles in your life, you would not grow and learn and become a better person. Obstacles are a natural, normal part of living an authentic life.

It’s not what happens in life that defines you but how you deal with your situations. You have heard by now the phrase when life gives you lemons turn them into lemonade. This is true today as it was whenever the first person coined the phrase. Use the following tips to help you turn adversity into success.

You may have heard the classic tale of how Thomas Edison continued 10,000 times before getting the light bulb to the way he wanted it. It’s hard to say if that number became exaggerated over the years, but he likely tried several thousand times at least. The point is, he believed in what he was doing. When you try something that is untested, you need to take a leap of faith. Otherwise, it’s too easy to give up on your venture.


Your BONUS Tips

1. Believe in what you are doing. You have heard the classic tale of how Thomas Edison continued 10,000 times before getting the light bulb to the way he wanted it. It’s hard to say if that number became exaggerated over the years, but he likely tried several thousand times at least. The point is, he believed in what he was doing. When you try something that is untested, you need to take a leap of faith. Otherwise, it’s too easy to give up on your venture.

2. Learn from your failures. If you ask any successful person how they got that way, they will most likely tell you it’s due to overcoming failures. They learned from those failures and tried something different. Each iteration, they learned something new from their failures. They continued until there were no failures.

3. Let others help you. Sometimes, when you face adverse situations, others can help you to turn your situation around. It’s rare that anyone faces something unique. Others have been through what you are going through. Reach out to them. It’s better to get the help you need than to needlessly struggle with your situation. Some people avoid reaching out because they are embarrassed. Just remember, those people once went through it, too. They know what you are dealing with.

4. If you are facing some adverse situation, it may be due to setting too high an expectation. Check out S.M.A.R.T. Goal Setting. You could have tried to accomplish something that is not possible or beyond your current level of skills. By adjusting your expectations, you may be able to succeed in your situation.

5. Don’t wait to try again. If your adverse situation is due to procrastinating, you can probably figure out you need to stop that behavior. If you let something build because it’s uncomfortable to deal with, in most cases, the situation will get worse.


6. Learn how to conquer your fears. Often, adversity is due to not taking action because you are fearful. When you face your fears, you can move past the adverse situation and get on with your life. Ultimately fear is really a narrative constantly told in your mind. That is all it is.

7. Do something foreign to your tendencies.


Want to live? Do what is foreign to you.

Try some daring activities like bungee jumping or skydiving. The point is to create situations that you would not normally find yourself doing. Usually, when you overcome one fear, the process helps you to overcome all of them. When it comes to opportunities, I took Paul Martinelli's advice, jump and figure it out on the way down. I have done that and I love the results.

8. Another aspect of adversity is not being honest with yourself about the situation. People tend to hide their true feelings or deny that they are facing a situation. Try some introspective to learn what is truly going on. Be honest with yourself but be fair. Being honest with yourself does not mean blasting yourself or condemning your failures.


Decide to declare over your life today that your obstacles, challenges, and adversities will have no power over you. Declare that and believe it. Then get to work strategically designing your plans and goals, then go impact your sphere of influence while learning every lesson that comes packaged with every failure.

© 2020 Zoe Transformation Coaching & Consulting. San Diego, CA. All Rights Reserved