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“Every adversity, every failure, every heartache comes with the seeds of an equal or greater benefit.” Napoleon Hill
When I found these words scrawled on a piece of paper in my office, they jumped out and challenged me. Can this be true?
Can it be true that in the midst of all this confusion and sadness we’re experiencing?
Can it be that something good will come of all this?
Maybe the whole world will finally realize that everyone really is connected.
Maybe people will really begin to realize the value of community in their lives.
Maybe we will bring back some of the manufacturing power we’ve surrendered.
Maybe, as one spiritual leader said in an interview, we’re giving the earth a rest.
And now, what of our writing? What of the adversity, the failures we face – what seeds of benefit are hidden within them – seeds that we can nurture until they blossom?
We may be struggling with a wayward novel. Our seed of benefit? Forced to put it down because we’re stuck, we may find that when we pick it up again we see it afresh.
We may be disheartened because a plot we devised and thought was clever is falling apart. Our seed of benefit? Spirited, determined tinkering may reveal more exciting twists and turns.
We may be facing rejection from agents and editors. Our seed of benefit? Turn downs may impel us to revisit our plot and characters, making them stronger and more alive.
We may feel we lack the energy to complete a project. Our seed of benefit? By revising our beginning or even starting a new project, unexpected and fruitful ideas may come to us.
It’s easy to listen to naysayers – they know it all. It’s easy to give in to discouragement.
What’s harder, but far more fulfilling, is to find hidden benefits in the challenges we face. But if we look for them, we can uncover them – they’re waiting for us.
Let’s find those promising seeds and nurture them until they bloom. Write on!