a call to someone to participate in a competitive situation or fight to decide who is superior in terms of ability or strength.
a task or situation that tests someone’s abilities.
When you think of the word challenge you automatically think of the negative connotiations that it comes with; both physically or otherwise. It never occurs to us that challenges and stumbles along the way actually can be positive and help us to grow. Endurance is after all one of the greatest lessons in life. A child only learns by trying and failing. I guess it’s something that we never grow out of.
This has nothing to do with religion either just so ya know. I’m not one of those people who think that we are meant to suffer. Suffering has nothing to do with the challenges that I am talking about.
For example, when I first went to the gym I actually thought I was going to die. Like literally die. I came out of there with my lungs on fire, my head felt like it was going to fall off and I genuinely believed my legs would never work again. However, as I carried on going the workouts became easier and I noticed that the weight was slowly starting to come off. The challenge paid off as my confidence grew and I actually started to enjoy the gym. As the summer holidays hit and I faced trials elsewhere in my life my gym routine steadily fell by the wayside and as old habits are hard to beat the weight came back with a vengence. I realised that I have to stay healthy and fit at home too even if I can’t get in a gym. Now we have good old YouTube so I can use channels such as FitnessBlendr if I can’t get to the gym. I’ve learned from the challenge of hating what I see and feel like when the weight comes back on and my confidence hits a low.
The same can be said with parenting. Dealing with any human can be diffcult, then deal with a small one who is trying to figure out how the world works, how to communicate, how to deal with new things, then try and figure out how to take care of that little human and look after one who struggles with these things even more than your average little human? Sounds crazy doesn’t it? And it is crazy. But it’s a craziness I absolutely love. Because after 6 months of struggling my M completed a piece of homework without asking for my help, and my J has settled into Year One so much easier than he did Reception and I know that these things have happened through months of laying groundwork and ploughing through. The feeling of pride and happiness you feel as a mother knowing that your child is making progress far out weighs those nights when I go to bed with a tear stained face praying that tomorrow will be better.
Knowing your weaknesses and being able to work through them will help you face bigger challenges along the way. Being belittled and bullied when I was younger means I know now how to use my voice to be able to talk about the things I am passionate about to help others and to ensure that nobody thinks its okay to treat me in a way that is any less than I deserve.
Challenges can help you change your outlook on how you react to things. There are many situations when I know I could have handled things in a better way but I know at that time I was speaking the truth and fighting for what I believed in. So now I can adapt and deal with new situations better.
Challenges in life can teach us to grab our figurative boxing gloves and roll with the punches. Some things are worth muddling through.