Luck is when preparation meets opportunity.
All of us have heard this phrase at some point in our life. But what happens when preparation meets adversity??
I had a taste of this a couple of years ago when I was on my annual working vacation stint at my parents' home in India. I had just been rejected from a job I was confident I would get. I was bored and struggling to complete even the most basic tasks at my current job. My stress level was off the charts, and even though I was physically with my family, I was never there mentally. It was one of the lowest points of my adult life.
Usually, my biggest weapons against stress used to be Diet Coke, ice cream, and Food.
Now the year before this incident, I had realized how bad my dependence on Diet Coke was and had stopped using it. And, at this time, I was also Icecream-free for a few months for similar reasons. Both those things were not easy, but I was very determined to stick to my guns on staying off of them.
Not being at my own house, I did not have any of my other coping mechanisms available to me either. I could not go for a drive, go to the gym, read my favorite books, or watch my American TV shows.
And even though I don't drink to deal with stress, I could not have a single drink to unwind, owing to some health issues at the time.
That left food as the only alternative. However, being at my parents' house meant that I was at a more structured regimen of 3-square meals a day and no access to my usual comfort foods.
All this forced me to think hard about my stress and tackle the real sources of that stress. For example, I squared with my project manager about my productivity and took some actual time off to enjoy with my family.
Cut to a couple of months after I came back home, and I realized I had been losing weight without any change to my non-existent exercise schedule! Upon some closer analysis, I discovered that my appetite had drastically reduced. I was not indulging with food, and would usually stop eating if I was not enjoying it (which was a polar opposite of my earlier self, who never cared how the food tasted).
That experience altered my relationship with food for the better. As a result, I lost 30 pounds in the following 6-months in a very healthy and sustainable manner (getting to a healthy weight has been a life long goal of mine).
In that moment of suffering, I could not see any silver lining. Reflecting on that time, however, I can see that had I not worked hard to stop my Diet Coke and ice cream habits before that incident, this change in my food habits would not have happened.
As I type this blog post, the whole world is dealing with probably the most significant adversity we ever faced caused by the Coronavirus. We are afraid, stuck away from family, losing jobs, and maybe the worst, losing hope.
I promise you that you are prepared to handle this adversity in some way that you don't yet realize. At some point in your life, you will look back and find out that this incident caused you to change your life for the better.
Keep working hard on yourself and your goals, and stay safe!