We all have bad days, weeks, months, and for some, even years. Different streams of pain whether it be from death, to heartbreak, to life changing catastrophes, can throw even the most optimistic of us into a state of constant dwelling and turmoil. The challenge is what you will do in these opportune times for growth and development.

Focusing on the past four months of my life, I have gone through various ups and some of the steepest downs I have ever faced, with the latter often bringing up the question - why? I share a mindset which I have developed from many heart to heart discussions with friends, long bouts of reflection, and from Victor Frankl, an author of one of the few books I have ever read in my life outside of school.

Every single experience, whether positive or negative has two outcomes. The first being the attainment of a tangible, extrinsic element, such as selling $4000 in one day with Vector or getting an A on an exam. While the other more profound and transformative intrinsic effect is who you become through the occurrence. Arguably one of the most difficult tasks is to find meaning in one's own life, and Frankl concludes that meaning is found through actions, in love, and in one's attitude during and after inevitable situations. In times of despair when the world seems to be against you, the pain you endure by itself is meaningless; however, meaning can be given to the pain in the way you respond to it. Countless movies and quotes share the theme of never giving up and to keep fighting for a goal, and while a valiant effort is always respectable, I believe it is important to acknowledge how all the obstacles you encounter help create a stronger version of yourself, regardless if you succeed in your goal or not.

I faced many struggles this summer: my mother battling cancer for the third time, my first true heartbreak, being unable to go on exchange to Australia, leaving a workplace full of friends, and injuring my knee which took me out of any physical activity for two months, to name the major ones - and of course several no sale appointments. I spent most of my summer thinking something good will come after each experience and how other people have it worse, but over time it became harder to remain optimistic - do not get me wrong, I recognize my highpoints like traveling across Canada and meeting my four month old niece for the first time.

Though upon recent reflection, I have grown to learn how each trial or setback has helped me become a stronger version of myself. I have learned to live more independently, to value my own happiness, to have balance in my relationships, and to not only stop to enjoy the flowers every so often but to enjoy the journey too. From these experiences I was shown my emotional weaknesses and mental mistakes, which I have learned from as well - all of these lessons are just to name a few.

So I urge you to embrace character building days since the challenges associated with whatever type of failure you have encountered will help you be wiser in future situations, and thus a stronger version of yourself.

Like many others, I dare you to make a mistake or take a risk knowing the margin of success may be slim, but I encourage you to not only take pride in the outcome, but also to learn from the journey. With each adversity you may lose everything except your ability to choose how you will react to the situation. Despite all the pain I have endured, I know it has enabled me to have greater experiences in the future.

I'd love to hear your thoughts, please share below.