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Understanding Setbacks


Resiliency and post traumatic growth
Life is an unending series of complications, so it doesn't make any sense to be surprised by the arrival of the next one.❞ -Sam Harris

I can't believe we got a Nintendo. It’s the early 1990s, and the Super Nintendo is relatively new. We did get a Super Nintendo, but now right away. Regular Nintendos are now cheaper so we finally get one.


A favorite game for the Nintendo was Super Mario Brothers. Like almost every video game that's ever existed, challenges exist at each level. I have to maneuver around plants that want to eat me, and turtles and little brown mushrooms try to kill me. As soon as I finish one level, I would be able to advance to a new level. The new level is always harder. Clearing a newer, more challenging level was frustrating, but worth it because of the pride and joy that it brought to me.


Imagine a video game where there were no challenges. I can simply walk my player from one side of the level to the other with nothing in the way. That would get me to the next level of where it was equally easy. I propose this video game would not be worth playing. It wouldn't be fun, and it would be a complete waste of time.


Life is the same. Life without setbacks, challenges, problems, or struggles would be a boring existence. Not only would we be bored, but we would never be able to learn and better ourselves. We would never be able to overcome any struggles to come out the other side stronger and smarter.


Financial setbacks should not only be expected but also welcomed.


The Perfect Life?


If you ask many people about what life would look like in their perfect world, you might get some version of a world where life is effortless, and there’s no stress and no worries.


Even though it seems like paradise on the surface, this mythical world falls apart with just a little bit of thought. To demonstrate this, imagine a world where there were no problems. You might even imagine that feeling happy today is what you would feel like every day in this new world. But since humans adapt to their surroundings very quickly, something known as hedonic adaptation, being happy all the time would become our new normal. And if we're happy all the time and that's normal, then we would need to feel extra happy in order to feel a little bit of joy. And what we consider normal today would be sad in this new world.


Although you might consider it useful to shift everything up, in our day-to-day lives, it wouldn't feel that way because we would get used to it.