A True Story of Resilience that’ll Change How you Perceive Obstacles
Most of us have grown up listening to the bedtime story of the rabbit and the tortoise. We recall that the tortoise was the hero. Besides being “slow and steady”, it won the race because it practiced resilience, as well – especially, as he saw the rabbit moving at a much faster speed.
This fact proves to be true in real life, as well.
Take a moment more and look back at the stories of Neil Armstrong, Isaac Newton, or Thomas Edison. These were people who believed in the unseen reality and kept moving without being bogged down by the failure, adversities, and barriers as they moved.
Edison got it right when he tried the 100th time, after failing as many as 99 times. Each one of us may not be the next Newton or Edison. But we have something innate in common with these legends. If we recognize, and leverage that power well, we can dig opportunities in adversities and still thrive.
What is the phenomenon that worked behind their continuity? It was Resilience. Or rather, Mental Resilience.
Our self-perceptions are influenced by cognitive biases, and so, we often underestimate ourselves or we focus on roadblocks more than the goals and, this often leads to frustration, agony, and hopelessness. The practice of Resilience helps you bounce back each time you get derailed.
This blog talks about the story of not Edison or the likes, but of someone who set out some brilliant examples of Resilience at different stages of his life – till he reached his ultimate success – the benchmark he aimed for and that always seemed almost impossible.
Meet this Invisible Man – who Fought for and Found an Identity Worth Everyone’s Attention
It is the story of a man, who fought for over 35 years for things that many of us cannot imagine for ourselves. He was constantly bogged down and subdued by the question – Why me. His unexplained failures, and that too for reasons that were rarely foreseen, slaughtered his confidence several times.
Yet, he managed to overcome the fears of failure and kept trying something new. He set some exceptional examples of rebound and reformation – together with leading up to self-resilience. Read more about him.
Lost Identify, Separated from Mother at 5 During Gulf War
He witnessed the explosions, fireflies, and devastation during the Gulf War, as a 5-year-old child. His parents separated soon, he lost his identity. It wasn’t just because he wasn’t with his parents any longer, but because his documents such as birth certificate that proved his existence and origin were lost just like his mother. His place of birth was unknown thereupon. All he knew was – he belonged to Syria.
With time, he realized that he had to struggle for the basic rights of mobility, healthcare, and education. He went to the Netherlands as a skilled migrant. His work contract expired and was never renewed after 2014 due to the complexities arising out of the Syrian war.
He had no choice than moving to an asylum to ensure he didn’t leave the Netherlands. He went there with a cool head, telling himself that it was a matter of a few days. The days turned out to be two years. Did he give up? Well! You will find out.
Takeaway: Perseverance is a tough game. However, the payback is high, as we saw in the story above. When you stop trying, you become more entrapped with the adverse situation.
He Defined His Career as a Blockchain Specialist while Looking at Hardships at Asylum. Strange?
While he was still at the refugee camp, he completed his Master’s Degree in Blockchain Technology from the University of Nicosia. Can someone imagine this?
He dwindled between 5 camps, carrying 14 Kgs of paper. These camps were located miles away from each other. He realized there were several other children as invisible (without identity) as he was. They had lost their certificates around the place of birth, academics, and land titles.
All these sufferings – his own and others’ , steered him to a big question – something that laid the foundation for his career.
“How can we prove if a document existed in the past if the issuer does not exist?” he started thinking. He had his basics done in Bitcoin Blockchain.
“If the Kuwaiti government would have used Blockchain technology in issuing my birth certificate, would I be to hold an authentic copy, and validate it without referring to the issuer?” Simply Yes, he thought.
Takeaway: This man chose to study while being at a refugee camp. How many of us manage to think about the underlying opportunities when we’re exposed to any sort of a predicament in life?
He Established His Bitcoin Startup – Conceived the Idea while Being at the Camp
Soon after completing his Master’s Degree, he started his company named Tykn to help build and protect the identities for billions of people—while ensuring the portability factor.
This is how he changed several lives and began to tread towards a successful career. While being still at the refugee camp – without a stable house, nationality, or home ground, he focused on growth.
He showed the courage to set up a company in a land that did not belong to him – not in the documents.
He inspired public figures to challenge decision-makers and be the change-makers for a better digital identity system inclusive to everyone. He called for the need for better developers, investors, and managers.
However, he faced something similar to what one of the most inspiring leaders of the world- Steve Jobs faced.
This invisible man was forced to leave off his own company.
Soon after that, he looked at a new venture. What do we learn?
Takeaway: Being expelled out of a company where you invested your sweat, blood and money could crush down a person. This experience didn’t deter his spirit. He rose from the ashes. Is that easy?
He Started a New Journey
He published a book presenting his inspiring story of resilience in the face of uncertainty. This man happens to be Tey El-Rjula, a four-time Tedx speaker, a Bitcoin evangelist and, a prolific writer.
He recently published his story – captured in his Book The Invisible Son, on July 17.
“Every time you think life is hard on you, think again. Think about the tools in your hands to fight back and create a better chance,” says Tey.
Your Resilience Has a Direct Co-Relation with your Emotional Well-Being and Abilities
Several pieces of research have brought out the fact that humans bounce back from adversities, and challenges by training themselves in psychological resilience.
Research has shown evidence that individuals who are not able to bounce back out of negative emotions are those who are caught up in the streams of negative thoughts. Those who bounce back aren’t the “lucky ones”. They simply demonstrate the concept of resilience. They learn and practice to cope and adapt to losses and hardship (Tugade and Fredrickson, 2010).
Resilience is Not Just Acceptance. It is a Greater Ability
Resilience corresponds to leveraging the most difficult situations towards your growth.
When we have to face an iron door, do we find bullets to break that wall, or do we just stand and gaze or, do we decide not to even try?
There is no right or wrong answer to this. The missions are unique for everyone, and hence, the paths are different. What matters is how well does your path lead you to the destination, and how does that complement and fulfill your purpose.
Summing Up – Understand How Resilience Serves you and Helps Fulfil your Purpose
Resilience ensures that you get up even after falling down several times. It serves as an innate power that lets you stand up again from the same grounds where you fell.
Tey’s story inspires by presenting some remarkable examples of perseverance and resilience and fulfillment of purpose. Let us know if you found this story helpful towards building your Resilience Strategy. Connect with us if you have something to add, ask, or learn more about this story or the practice of resilience: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Resilient Individuals Use Positive Emotions to Bounce Back From Negative Emotional Experiences, Journal of Personality and Social Psychology.