Episode #26: how to create change in the face of adversity
Welcome to episode 26 of LIT! My name is Ravi Toor, and I’m your host. I’m so excited for today’s episode. It’s a post-birthday episode. On Monday, I turned 35 and there’s something so fucking special about this birthday. It’s 10 years after I decided to create real change in my life.
11 years ago, I was at the footsteps of death’s doors. I was living my worst life and making choices that would lead to my eventual and painful death. I didn’t expect to see 25, let alone 35. Yet, here I am, living my best life and making even better choices to create more and more positive impact in other people’s lives.
How did I get here?
Pretty simple, I got here just like my past guests on LIT, and that… that’s what we’re talking about today.
Creating change in the face of adversity.
Back when I was 24, things were rough. I was a full blown drug addict living on the streets. It’s not something I had expected out of life. I had everything worked out when I was young. I knew what school I was going to, I knew what career choice I was going to make. I knew how many fucking kids I was going to have by the age of 21. But, to my surprise, that’s not exactly how things worked out. Instead, at a young age, I was hit with a life trauma that would change the course of my life. And it did, for a real long fucking time.
The story is long, and it’s full of pain and experiences I wouldn’t wish on my worst enemy but, that’s the thing, the story is a part of me and all of the things I learned, even in the shittiest of times, was setting me up for the woman I am today.
Say what now?
That’s right, I wouldn’t trade my life experiences in for anything. Now, don’t get me wrong, back in the day, all my experiences: the sexual abuse, the change in life direction, addictions, homelessness, defeat, embarrassment, and sadness, they were a real pain in my ass. I believed, deep down in my heart, that not only was I meant for nothing, but that I would also amount to nothing in life, therefore, I, in essence, was nothing.
What a shitty feeling to have. Yet, I know there are so many of you who have the same feeling with a different type of story.
Imagine trying to get yourself out of your darkest times with zero hope or belief in yourself or in your circumstances changing. It’s hard work. But… it’s not impossible.
Creating change in adversity is hard fucking work. I know, I’ve been there.
To see yourself in the mirror with all the toxicity around you, and all the failed attempts at life can get real hard to stomach day in and day out. So when you stand in front of that mirror, with your silent thoughts, those thoughts can be loud and mean. And there’s no one else but you to support or help you.
What do you do in that moment? Where do you go? How do you create change and what kind of change, if any?
You create a change in your mind.
Most of what I’ve talked about on LIT is about mindset. I chose to take this route in my life and career because I know, mindset is the ONE thing that creates real, sustainable change in any direction. That means it could be a negative or positive direction and change.
The way you think in your mind, the things you say in your head, the feelings you hold about yourself and your circumstances are all a result of your mindset.
Your mindset is a result of your beliefs. If you believe you’re meant for nothing, your actions, your choices, your feelings, your perception, your fucking reality will mirror that right back to you.
However, if you choose to believe in yourself, in your innate abilities, and in the possibility of change, you’re going to feel those empowering emotions. Your perception will change, and opportunities will be more obvious. Your actions will reflect your thoughts and that means your reality changes.
Why am I telling this?
Because, 10 years ago, I had a different kind of mindset. I hated the world. I believed everything in it was terrible and that there was nothing I could do about it. I believed my circumstances would get the best of me and that I was worthless, like a speck of dust in the grand scheme of things. There was no point. And that is how I lived my life.
Then, one day, I had had enough. I wanted something more because, no matter what nasty thing my mind was telling me, there was this odd, and, yet, very soft voice that would tell me, randomly, I was meant for more. There was something I was meant to do. I had a purpose.
For years I ignored this really soft voice. Who the fuck are you and what kinda drugs are you smoking? Right? That was my rationale to this little voice that had followed me for years. Actually, since I was a kid.
Because I had always chose to ignore it, it remained soft, fleeting and unrelatable. Until that day, when I decided, I would listen.
I decided to give in. I decided I was game.
That was one choice. And that one choice created massive, irreversible change for the better.
It was that voice that lead me to create change in adversity. It was that voice that became my beacon of light, my hope. And riding on just hope, I started to create change by action.
I decided I would sit in line, on time, to potentially get a cot at the shelter. You know what? I got something better, I got a bed and locker.
I decided I would fill out that rehab application to start the 6 month waiting game. You know what? I got in a week later.
I decided I would abandon my embarrassment of being a Punjabi girl hooked on drugs and homeless in hopes I would be accepted at one point. You know what? I was accepted, understood, and loved right aways.
I decided, internally, I would make a different choice, one I wasn’t used to but one that would get me closer to a better circumstance. And each time, that decision I made yesterday, paid huge dividends the very next day and for days and years to come.
Here’s the thing though I never really knew what the next right choice was, instead, I followed my intuition. As cloudy as it was. I developed that sucker out like a muthafucker, and relied on it… wait, let me correct myself, I rely on it everyday.
That little voice was the voice of my intuition. It guided me through the toughest times of my life. That voice helped me see something greater than my circumstances, it helped me see my life path.
That voice was my intuition saying, gurl, I got your fucking back, now step to it. And when I listened, I always found myself in the right place that would serve me best.
And, here’s the thing, I’ve always been in the right place. Even during my struggles. Because, it’s those times that develop the core of who you really are. During your tough times, you develop character, stamina, resourcefulness, leadership, empathy, vulnerability, belief, courage, resilience and so much more. And most of it is developed through taking action, hard action that leads to greater results.
These are not just words, today this is truth and a story I know you can relate to. I’m not the only one who’s suffered, you have to. Your story might be very similar to mine or, your story may be different. Maybe you’re dealing with toxic relationship keeping you down or maybe you’re dealing with financial struggle of a different kind. Maybe you’re dealing with obstacle after obstacle or maybe you’re dealing with nothing at all.
Whatever your story, one thing I can guarantee you, if you’re in a fixed mindset ignoring that soft voice that’s trying to guide you, you’re gonna be there for a long fucking time. But if you change, make one choice, right now, and keep making those choices to listen to that soft voice, to develop it out and follow it, I’m going to tell you the truth.
Your intuition will guide you exactly to where you’re supposed to go and be.
You are meant for great things in life. You’re like me, you have a story that will change someone’s life, that will affect impact and that will create solutions. You have to believe it. When you do, huge fucking things happen.
You become the face of change. You become the ripple effect. You become the leader, the champion and the one who’s happiest of them all. Because you become whole.
Challenge yourself today to create change, no matter what your adversity.
Challenge those thoughts you have. For every negative thought, believe and say a positive thought then, listen for your intuition’s voice.
Live by your truth, because when you’re living in truth, you’re living free. And when you live free you live in peace.
When you live in peace, you a force to be reckoned with.
So, what’s your story?
Who are you?
Why do your life events matter in the big picture?
How can you use your experiences to create change for yourself and for the world?