We were just about to start our meeting on what next to post when one of our colleague came in with Forefront magazine and showed us this very inspiring story about overcoming problems in life. Here is the content of the story.

As hard as it may be, more problems might actually mean a closer window of opportunity. There is a saying that every single thing happens for a reason and whatever does not kill us makes us stronger. A story by Alijo Sylvester. The story goes like this:

A young woman went to meet her mom to tell her about her life and how things are so hard for her. She was about giving up and had no idea how she was going to make it. She was fed up of fighting and struggling. She complained of how after a problem, straight comes another one.
Her mom called her to the kitchen. She filled three pots with water and put them on fire. The first pot, she placed carrot, the second she placed egg and the third she placed ground coffee bean.
She let them boil without saying a word. In about twenty minutes she puts off the fire, fished the carrots and put them in a bowl, she did the same to the egg and she ladled the coffee out and poured it in a cup.

She turned to her daughter and asked the daughter a questions. Tell me, what do you see? The daughter replied carrots, eggs and coffee. The mother dragged her closer and asked her to take one of the egg and break it, and after pulling off the shell, she observed the hard-boiled egg. She then asked her to feel one of the carrots and she noted it was soft and finally, she asked her to sip the coffee. The daughter smiled as she tasted its rich aroma.

The daughter then asked, “what does it mean, mother?” Her mother explained that each of these objects had faced the same adversity; boiling water, but each reacted differently.
The carrot went in strong, hard and unrelenting. But after been boiled in water it softened and became weak. On the other hand, the egg had been fragile, its thin outer shell had protected its liquid interior. But after been in water, the York and the white part became hardened. The ground coffee bean were unique, after they were in boiling water, they changed the water completely.
“WHICH OF THESE THREE ARE YOU when adversity hit you? How do you respond? Will you be like the carrot, egg or coffee bean?” The mother asked her daughter.

Every single one of us experience adversities at different point of our lives, the good news is we can overcome them with the right altitude and hard work. It can hold us back, it can damage our motivation and it can basically feel like we are stuck in an abysmal situation with no way out. Problems are a series of misfortunes that keep us from achieving our goals and finding happiness. This may include social injustice and personal tragedy, like illness or loss. These experiences can lead to hopelessness and or depression.

When faced with problems, think of this: which am i? am I the carrot that seems strong but, with pain and adversity wilt and become soft and loose strength or the egg that starts with a malleable heart, but changes with the heat? Did I have a fluid spirit but, after a death, a breakup or a financial hardship, my shell look the same, but on the inside I am bitter and tough with a stiff spirit and a hardened heart? Or am I like the coffee bean? The bean actually changes the hot water, the very situations that brings the pain. When the water gets hot, it releases the fragrance and flavour. If you are like the bean, when things are at their worst, you get better and change the situation around you. When the hours are the darkest and trials are their greatest, do you elevate to another level? How do you handle adversity? Which are you; a carrot, an egg or a coffee bean?

If we learn to look at adversity as a lesson instead of letting it drag us down, we can only come out of the experience stronger than before.

So are you a carrot, an egg or a coffee bean?


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