Why the Challenges in Life Build You Up (and Why You Should Take on More of Them)


Ever heard that 96 percent of people fail when they try to better themselves?

We could conclude that this is really quite depressing. But actually, it reveals something about why we struggle to improve as humans.

We want to achieve personal development without encountering challenges on the journey. However, it’s important to realize that challenges are inevitable. Moreover, it’s the challenges in life which build character.

In many ways, we’re defined by the challenging situations we found ourselves. Let’s discover together the challenges that build us up. Here we go!

1. Opportunity for Personal Growth

If you want to accomplish personal growth, you can’t duck the challenges you encounter along the way. 

If you want to learn to play the clarinet or how to speak French, it’s not going to be a walk in the park. You need to struggle to get where you want to be.

Even the desire to become a kinder or more honest person requires challenges. For example, you could mistreat your best friend or lie to a loved one. And yet, you improve by realizing your mistakes and putting them right.

2. Awareness and Understanding

Growing as a person is about improving your awareness and understanding. You want to develop your knowledge of self, others, and the universe as a whole.

Remember back to school? There would be some kids who would always put their hands up. 

There would be a few kids who always knew the answer. However, what about the child who always had a question?

As the Greek philosopher, Socrates, noted, “I know that I know nothing.” You need to develop a curiosity for knowledge and truth. Don’t get hung up on knowing all the answers. 

3. Live a Healthier Lifestyle

Every year, millions of Americans make New Year Resolutions. The top three goals are:

  • Diet or eat healthier
  • Exercise more
  • Lose weight 

Many people concentrate on 92 percent of people who don’t achieve their goals.

However, it’s important to remember that becoming healthier is always going to be a challenge. If it was easy to eat your greens and go for a run every morning, then everyone would do it. 

If you want to lead a healthier lifestyle, you need to be prepared for the struggles which you will encounter. But, you’ll be thankful you put in the effort for the results.

4. Financial Independence

Did you know that 1 in 3 Americans has nearly no savings?

You may go into debt during your lifetime, especially if you want to go to college. There are numerous reasons where you may find yourself with money troubles.

However, it’s important to come out the other side with financial independence. While money doesn’t make you happy, not having it can be crushing.

It may be an upward struggle to start saving for your future retirement and financial security, but it’s worthwhile. Just challenge yourself each year to save a little more. 

5. Advancement at Work

Roughly one-third of workers who quit their jobs said their motivation was because they were bored and needed a new challenge.

Not for a higher salary. But, simply because the challenges in the workplace were so important that they defined their job.

If you’re not satisfied with how your career is going, you may need to switch employers or careers.

It’s easy to settle for what you’ve already got. However, eventually, you’ll come to feel your talent and energy was wasted. Taking on another challenge is the most reliable for advancement in your career. 

If you want to reward your employees for advancement in the workplace, this company knows how. 

6. Improve Your Social Relationships

A Harvard Study into what makes people happy which lasted up to 80 years, came back with the results. 

It’s relationships with other people. 

People are happier when they cultivate stronger relationships with people who can support them. 

Roughly 83 percent of Americans report being happy in their social relationships. And yet, do we really challenge ourselves to improve our social relationships?

How often do you ask yourself how you can be a better listener for your friend? Do you frequently consider how to better support your partner?

7. New Experiences 

You wake up at the same time every morning, then go to work. You come home after work and watch a couple episodes of your favorite TV show. You go to sleep.

Rinse and repeat, right?

Routines can be great. However, you should also make sure you’re always getting new experiences to challenge yourself.

You travel whenever you can to get away. This is an opportunity to broaden your horizons, meet new people and see the world.

If you can’t afford to travel frequently, make every effort to try something new in your home town. Check out a new restaurant or go on a date with someone new to challenge your perspective.

8. Improve Your Self-Confidence

Around 85 percent of people say that they struggle with self-confidence. 

Lack of self-esteem can damage your relationships and career significantly if you allow it to chip away at you.

However, what you encounter negative thoughts about yourself, it’s important not to let them take over.

Challenge yourself to think positively about yourself. Sometimes, the challenge is simply to accept yourself.

Overcome Challenges in Life

Now you know how challenging situations can actually build up your character. Therefore, instead of shying away from the hard times, we need to confront them head-on. 

Everyone has different challenges in life which they are determined to overcome. If you’re struggling to overcome addiction, read this helpful article.