No event is so bad you cannot make something good come out of it. Your challenge is to take whatever happens and make it into something beautiful.
At the start of the first Gulf War, each night we experienced the bombardment of Riyadh by scud missiles. When the sun went down, we knew that within a few hours, the air raid sirens would sound, and scud missiles would start falling from the sky. Usually by ten p.m., we would go to our safe room at least once because a scud launch had been detected by satellite, and in about five minutes, the missile would come down and explode somewhere in Riyadh. It was our own version of Riyadh roulette.
We made two rooms in our house into shelters. One was an “air tight” shelter to protect us if there was an attack of nerve gas. The other was a smaller, stronger shelter to protect from the explosion of missiles. This nightly ritual was psychologically traumatic since no one enjoys being the target of bombs dropping randomly out of the sky. My family remembers the night the first scud missile came into Riyadh. We felt the dull thud of the exploding missile, the windows rattled, and we took our gas masks to our sealed room to escape any nerve gas. This satisfies my definition of a bad experience.
After ten nights of scud missile attacks, we decided to turn this bad experience into something good. We boarded a military aircraft which evacuated us out of Riyadh to Torrejon, Spain and onward to the United States.
During our six-week vacation from the war, we took the lemons of life and made lemonade. We drove to Miami, Florida and went to the Miami boat show. While we were at the boat show, we saw modern ocean cruising catamarans. We took a demonstration sail on one of them, and we instantly knew we had found the yacht on which we would sail around the world. Eventually we bought one of the catamarans, and several years later started a sailing voyage around the world.
No event in life is so bad that you can’t make something good come out of it. We took a war and converted it into a sailing voyage around the world. We took a potential disaster and converted it into something beautiful.
People who live their dreams are specialists at converting bad things into beautiful things. One of your biggest challenges will be to take bad experiences and make them into something better.
The first step in transforming a bad experience into a beautiful one is the decision you make about the meaning of the experience. You have the privilege of deciding the meaning of everything that happens in your life. Your attitude is what makes bad experiences bad; only a positive attitude can make bad experiences into something beautiful.
When the Life Long Disoriented encounter problems, they head for cover and hide until the problem goes away. The result is they hide from the opportunities of life. People who reach their dreams have a different attitude toward problems. They convert problems into opportunities. They know that every problem contains the seeds of opportunity and that challenges are the launching pad for their life.
You are paid to solve problems. The more of them you solve, the more money you make, and the faster you grow as a person. If you want to grow at the most rapid rate, you should actively look for problems you can solve. Find a need and fill it; find a problem and solve it. You will finance your dreams with the problems you solve for other people.
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