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Recently on my Saturday morning radio talk show, Tess Talk!, I was fortunate enough to have the honor of featuring a former Navy Seal named Dave (last name withheld). Just think of all the amazing stories and experiences he could have shared with me and Tess Talk! listeners, and I was so excited to hear what he would say. Imagine my surprise when he began to boil down all of his varied personal and professional experiences to one word... perseverance.

"We all deal with issues in our lives that are real to us, and... those obstacles can help us to grow, pretty much, or disable us," Dave shared. "And what I realized more than anything else and what I took out [from all these various experiences]... there's really nothing I can't achieve. It all starts with believing in yourself and not giving up. Everything really great in life has to be a challenge, and has to be hard to do."

Perseverance defined is, "doing something despite difficulty or delay in achieving success." Perseverance is the only way to experience success, growth and healing from the difficulties in life. The key isn't in attempting to deny or avoid negative or difficult experiences. It is how we respond to those experiences that is the key to moving forward, growing and overcoming.

Another key to perseverance is building relationships with those around you who have had similar experiences, those who are like-minded, and those who can offer tools to support and help you grow. As a team, you can rely on others to garner hope, solve problems and garner strength from one another. While our challenges are unique to each of us, there ARE others who can relate and come alongside and help.

You don't have to remain stuck where you are. You CAN overcome the challenges you face, large and small, if you choose to persevere. Life CAN be full, fulfilling and satisfying so don't give up. Whether you're struggling to heal from emotional trauma, interpersonal issues, physical ailments, or substance abuse issues, there are resources; You're not alone. Reach out and find others who can help you overcome these challenges. A whole and healthy life is waiting for you if you will only persevere!

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