If you’ve had these 8 experiences in life, you’re wiser and more resilient than you realize

When people share about the challenges they’ve overcome, do you secretly think, “I could never do that”?

Well, it’s normal. Sometimes, it’s easier to see other people’s virtues than your own. 

You might have gone through tough circumstances without taking a moment to realize how strong you really are.

And those qualities you admire? You probably have more of them in you than you think!

If you’ve had these 8 experiences in life, you’re wiser and more resilient than you realize:

1) Living on your own

Leaving the comforts of home to live on your own (especially if you’re moving far away) is no easy feat.

And if you did this as a young adult, then more props to you!

Independence is hard.

You have to do everything on your own—from cooking your meals to managing home repairs, and then of course, there’s paying the bills.

You also have to deal with solitude, after being surrounded by family all your life.

So if, for whatever reason, you’ve been thinking of yourself as a wimp who lacks backbone, you gotta erase that thought because it’s absolutely not true.

If you’ve been living independently for a while now, you’re actually one tough cookie!

2) Being in a bad marriage

“By all means marry: if you get a good wife, you’ll become happy; if you get a bad one, you’ll become a philosopher” I agree with Socrates.

Of course, if you can get out of a toxic relationship, please please please do! 

But if that’s not possible for you right now—because you’re broke, because you have a child, because you’re not ready yet—then try not to be too hard on yourself. 

Some relationships just don’t work out—and this is the case with a bad marriage. 

Like a lot of the other things on this list, it’s a difficult and painful experience, but living through it also creates an opportunity for personal growth

It can teach you patience.

It can teach you how and when to compromise.

And it can teach you more about who you are.

After all, we discover more about ourselves not in those smooth-sailing, sunshine-y moments, but rather, in those rough patches. 

If you’re currently in a bad marriage (or bad relationship), I hope you’re able to see yourself through that rough patch.

And know that when you do, you’ll be someone who’s wiser and more resilient than the previous version of yourself. 

3) Money problems

If you’ve had to scrimp to pay the bills, or skip a meal to pay the bus home, or had a business fail and lost all your savings…

Then you’re tougher than you think!

You understand the hardship of living short on money in a world that relies on it. 

And these experiences not only teach you about your own finances, but also how to be creative with it.  

And of course, living through these can make you emotionally stronger, too.

So you don’t really sweat the small stuff anymore.  

Hopefully, these experiences also made you wise enough to make decisions that ensure that you don’t have to go through those tough times again. 

4) Failing miserably

You dreamed big. And you were relentless in your pursuit…

But still, you failed. Fell flat on your face. OUCH!

Of course, it’s normal if you kinda feel like a loser.

But try to remind yourself that this isn’t true. 

You see, failing is just part of the process.

Every successful person has failed several times before they achieved that level of success. 

And even when they’re already successful, I guarantee you that they still fail at other things in life.

They just know how to pick themselves up and keep going. That’s their norm!

Failure comes with two gifts: wisdom and resilience.

So, get on back up and dust yourself off. 

Equipped with the wisdom you’ve gained and the resilience you’ve developed, try again, and eventually you’ll find your success. 

5) Losing a job

Losing a job can be scary.

After all, the bills don’t stop just because you’re out of a job.

And aside from the obvious financial impact, your job can also affect a lot of other things—your access to healthcare, your visa status, your relationships, sometimes even your self-confidence and identity. 

So, I get that when it happens, it can shake you to the core.

But these core-shaking moments, although not lovely by any means, can actually make you tougher.

It can teach you to save and diversify your income streams.

It can make you grow a thicker skin as you venture out for a new job.

It can teach you to separate your identity from your work.

Because your job is only a small portion of the tapestry of who you are as a person. 

So, if you’ve experienced losing a job, maybe even a couple of times now, you’re definitely stronger and wiser (and more flexible!) than those who stuck with the same job for years.

Be proud of yourself! You’re actually quite a badass.

6) Losing a loved one

Whether it’s a pet, a parent, or a friend, it’s never easy. 

In fact, it’s one of those times when there aren’t enough words to describe how hard of an experience it is. 

The loss leaves its mark on you forever, and even when years have passed, you still know it’s there. 

This applies to break-ups too, especially if you truly believed they’re the one.

But while this is definitely not something you want to ever experience, it’s inevitable—it’s something that just happens to everyone. 

The consolation is that experiencing this kind of loss can definitely make you stronger and wiser.

Stronger, because you have no choice but to live with the pain.

You get up, eat, work, and sleep with grief enveloping you wherever you go, whatever you do.

Wiser, because grief and loss make you reflect on life—that it’s indeed fleeting, and the best thing you can do is appreciate what you have while you still can.

7) Betrayal

Your partner cheated on you? Your friend stole your idea? Your colleague spread rumors about you?

Well, that definitely sucks.

I experienced all of these and man, oh man, does it hurt. 

But now that I’ve moved on, I’m actually grateful for those experiences, because they definitely made me wiser. 

I’ve become more discerning of people. 

I can now easily tell when someone’s being shady, so I know to stay away from them.

I’ve also learned that it’s better to not expect too much from people. Yes, some of them will hurt you, some will pull you down.

But I also learned that there will ALWAYS be some who’ll prove to you that they’re sincere and worthy of your love and friendship.

And I guess these are the upsides of betrayal—they let you discover the people who truly care about you, and make you wiser and more resilient when it comes to relationships.

8) Being rejected

It’s hard not to take rejection personally.

Sometimes, it can even be more painful than being slapped in the face.

If you asked your crush out but they said, “No, thank you,” it’s normal to feel dejected and even a bit unlovable.

If you pitched an idea but the funders said, “Not this time,” it makes sense to doubt the value of your ideas. 

And if you exhibited your work but all you got was negative feedback, it’s natural to wonder if you’re good enough.

Rejection targets the ego, but if you’re able to deal with it in a healthy manner, it can also turn you into someone who’s wiser and more resilient.

You have to remember that the most successful people build up an immunity to rejection. 

But that’s because they’re wise enough to know that success requires a lot of rejections (“100 rejections a day” is their goal), and they’re resilient enough to not let that stop them. 

Final thoughts

The last thing I want is to glamorize pain and suffering.

There’s no doubt how shattering these life experiences can be, and they’re definitely not fun to go through.

But one way or the other, life will hand you these tough breaks. 

And if (or when) you’re able to crawl out of these experiences, know that you’re no longer the same person.

You’re someone tougher and wiser, and ultimately these things will help you appreciate what you have, who you are, and help you get ahead in life.

Ava Sinclair

Ava Sinclair is a former competitive athlete who transitioned into the world of wellness and mindfulness. Her journey through the highs and lows of competitive sports has given her a unique perspective on resilience and mental toughness. Ava’s writing reflects her belief in the power of small, daily habits to create lasting change.

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