The Gift of Adversity: The Unexpected Benefits of Life's Difficulties, Setbacks, and Imperfections
Publish Date: 2014-09-04
Author: Norman E Rosenthal MD
Now in paperbackthis acclaimed book from Norman Rosenthal, the New York Timesbestselling author and research psychiatrist, shows how lifes disappointments and difficulties provide us with the lessons we need to become happier and more resilient human beings.
Winner of the 2014 Nautilus Award represents Better Books for a Better Worldthe Silver Award in the category of Heroic Journeys.
Adversity is an irreducible fact of life. Although we can and should learn from all experiences, both positive and negative, bestselling author Dr. Norman E. Rosenthal, believes that adversity is by far the best teacher most of us will ever encounter.
Whether the adversity one experiences is the result of poor decision-making, a desire to test ones mettle, or plain bad luck, Rosenthal believes lifes most important lessonsfrom the value of family to the importance of occasionally cutting cornerscan be best learned from it.
Running counter to societys current prevailing message that excellence must always be aspired to, and failure or mistakes of any sort are to be avoided at all costs, Rosenthal shows that engaging with our own failures and defeats is one of the only ways we are able to live authentic and meaningful lives, and that each different type of adversity carries its own challenges and has the potential to yield its own form of wisdom.
Using stories from his own lifeincluding his childhood in apartheid-era South Africa, his years after suffering a violent attack from a stranger, and his career as a psychiatristas well as case studies and discussions with well-known figures like Viktor Frankl and David Lynch, Rosenthal shows that true innovation, emotional resilience, wisdom, and dignity can only come from confronting and understanding the adversity we have experienced. Even when life is hardest, there are meanings to be found, riches to be harvested, and gifts that can last a lifetime.
Rosenthal illustrates his message through a series of compact, memorable chapters, each one drawn from episodes in the lives of his patients, colleagues, or himself, and concluded with a take-away maxim on the lesson learned.