Over the course of nearly 30 years of battling addiction and ongoing mental health issues, resilience buried within a strong meaning and sense of life purpose, have helped me to survive.
I grew up with fun-loving, adventurous friends; we took risks and had a whirlwind of hedonistic experiences, risking both our physical and mental health experimenting with substances.
I could never had predicted that these experiences would eventually result in the fatalities of the core members of my friendship circle – whilst I came close on a number of occasions, I seem to have escaped that fate.
Over the past three decades I have continuously fallen and gotten back up. The last time I got back up was 13 and a half years ago. Since then I have grown in “resilience within” – experiencing some of the saddest moments of my life, but learning to accept sadness, which has helped me to grow in the process.
The corner stone of my “resilience within” has been in developing a personal meaning and purpose; from being more family orientated to planning my future career.
First, I have endeavoured to be a true friend and a supportive family member, simultaneously developing an emotional intelligence that has helped me serve others who have endured similar experiences. Through what I have learned in my own life, I’ve found purpose in encouraging others to find the path that I have been guided onto.
Second, I have progressively introduced personal goals and achievements into my life - from gaining volunteering and part time experience, to earning a university degree and full-time work, and eventually being rewarded with a promotion to a senior in my current field of work.
My “resilience within” was born out of enduring some of the hardest emotional experiences I’ve encountered and has been maintained by finding purpose in my life.