“No Thank You. I’ll Have The Salad” – Getting Comfortable With Adversity

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by Melody Fletcher on January 19, 2012

[The following is another guest post from Steve Rice, who has written for Deliberate Blog several times. I love Steve's contributions. He always manages to make a really profound point in a lighthearted and entertaining way. In short, he rocks. Take it Steve.]

If you believe in the Law of Attraction and have put it to use at all in your life, you’ve probably come across the same problem I have.

Have you found yourself in an adverse situation and thought, What the heck was I thinking to draw this to me?!?

From there, your mind devolves into a downward spiral of second-guessing, shaming and fear. I’ve learned a powerful tool that I want to share with you.

It is simply this: 

Adversity Is an Opportunity for Clarity

What do I mean by this?  If you have manifested an adverse circumstance or set of circumstances, it has nothing to do with you, personally. The Universe is not punitive and petulant. It functions on cause and effect.

Secondly, your current situation is merely a reflection of your prior thoughts and emotions. Don’t personalize it and beat yourself up.  It is not worth it.

Instead, stay in the present and be conscious of the fact that you are always creating your future experiences; therefore, you are always free to choose different and better experiences for yourself.  Stay connected here.  The past is already thought and felt.  You can’t change what is in the present.  Focus on your current experience and direct it to new and better circumstances.

Each adverse situation you experience is merely the opportunity to say, “oh, I didn’t want that.  I think I’ll choose something else.”

Think of it like this.  You are at a wonderful cosmic restaurant and the Universe stands by as your waiter, ready to take your order.  The server doesn’t care if you order steak or salad.

It’s not bothered if you say, “No, thank you. I think I’ll have the salad today.”

The Universe is immensely supportive. You can send back your dinner, and never worry about angering the chef!

So instead of saying, “Gosh, I’m so dumb for ordering that steak when I really wanted a salad,” just say, “wow, I didn’t expect such a big steak.  Can I get the salad instead?”

Once you become comfortable with adversity, then you will recognize that it is not really adversity at all, but merely an opportunity to gain better clarity for what you do and do not want to create as your life experience.

And someday, you may find yourself saying, “Thank you for the steak. I’d rather have the salad today, but could you put the steak in a box to go?”

That’s what the really successful people do.  They don’t create resistance to what is in front of them, instead, they focus on what they want instead, and they figure out a way to make what is in front of them work for them.

You can do this too. It’s well within your power and within your ability. You are the diner at the restaurant of life and the Universe is your waiter.

BIO: Steve Rice is the owner ofTrueSpiritualAwakening. He is an author and entrepreneur committed to creating a well-lived life and helping others to do the same. You can follow him ontwitteror connect onFacebook.

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Adrienne January 19, 2012 at 19:51

Great post!

Cathy | Treatment Talk January 19, 2012 at 22:13

Hi Steve,

That is a good way to look at life. Make the negative into a positive. We can look at situations and understand how our reaction can make it a win for all. Sounds great!
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Steve Rice January 20, 2012 at 01:13

Thanks for connecting, Cathy. Glad this post resonated with you. It’s harder to do than to say, but once we remove the drama and isolate the story we’re telling ourselves about the circumstances it’s easier to be more objective.
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Eric Cole January 19, 2012 at 23:26

This is exactly what I found, Steve! Most recently, when applying the attraction process to online dating. Yep, women fitting the description of the type of woman I was wanting to meet would contact me. Kind of like typing commands into a computer I would get exactly what I was asking for. Exactly! As a result, I’ve been able to learn what I really do want in a partner. It’s all good. And definitely effective for learning and growing!
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Steve Rice January 20, 2012 at 01:15

Glad that this process has worked for you, Eric. I remember when I was dating, I tried to hold on to a relationship with the LOA…of course, it didn’t work. Even though I was saying I wanted the relationship, my desperation to hold on to it was producing really low energy vibrations.

Out of that experience, though I met my current partner and I’m so grateful for a circumstance that (at the time) seemed so detrimental.
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Eric Cole January 20, 2012 at 02:05

Thanks for the reply, Steve. Very cool how these things work out. Beautifully orchestrated!

Attracting and meeting someone is one thing. Building a relationship is a whole other thing! These days I prefer to explore, have fun, and meet people. As much as I love commitment, and I do, I’m not concerned anymore about whether or not I’m in a relationship.

In retrospect, mixing LOA type processes with online dating was much more about learning, both about myself and what I really wanted in a partner, than finding one. When “she” and I cross paths I’ll be able to offer a whole person to the relationship.

Back to sledding with my daughter!
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Steve Rice January 20, 2012 at 02:28

Sounds like a great plan (sledding)…winter just bitch-slapped us in WI…it’s about 2 degrees, so I’m not going to be sledding, but sounds like fun!

You’re on the right track, I think. Have you ever read don Miguel Ruiz’s book “The Mastery of Love”? It’s really profound and I recommend it. I listened to the audio over and over. It really helped me heal after that relationship I tried to cling on to.

The process of awareness is powerful in relationship and all things unfold exactly as they are meant to. You’ll do well with the outlook you have, my friend.
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Kimmie Gibbons January 20, 2012 at 03:28

Hi Steve,
Thank you for the guest post. Today was the perfect day for me to read this. I have been bewildered because of the amount of things that have happened with many friendships this week. It has felt like a merry-go-round (and not a fun one) that I haven’t been able to jump off of. I didn’t even know I had jumped onto it and then it just continued…it is seldom that I feel lost and bewildered and confused and with SO many people at one time. I have definitely been questioning…how did I attract this and why all at once?! At any rate, reading your post came at the perfect time…I LOVE the steak and salad analogy, and realize that this is an opportunity for choosing what I DO want.

Steve Rice January 20, 2012 at 18:26

Wow, Kimmie…this is SO encouraging. I always get small nudges that tell me I’m on the right track…and your comment is one today.

I’m sorry for the adversity you’re facing, but I am so grateful you are aware and recognize the opportunity. Remember my advice about not taking it personally. Instead of wondering how you attracted “all this at once” to you, focus instead on this truth (and a good affirmation I use often):

“Life unfolds before me exactly as it is meant to for the highest good of all”

Hope this helps you. Another small bit of advice that’s practical–was given to me once by a therapist friend of mine. He told me, “You can choose not to engage the drama of whatever is going on in your life”.

This had a profound affect on me. It helped me realize that I could observe a situation without being drawn into all the drama of the expectations, disappointments and insecurities we all harbor.

Enjoy the “salad!” :)
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Kelli Cooper January 20, 2012 at 05:40

Hi Steven
This was a great post and you hit it right on the head….use negative situations as a springboard for figuring out what you would rather want instead. I am getting better and better at shifting my energy and focusing my thoughts on what I do want, though I still falter at times. And it is so true, the Universe just doles out based on the energy we put out there. We cannot take it personally, it is not doing it to punish us!
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Steve Rice January 20, 2012 at 18:29

Great point, Kelli! Changing focus–even for a minute–can help us shift to a better feeling emotion. It is a process, so don’t become discouraged (that’s what I often do, because I’m impatient). Instead, just shift your focus.

My favorite technique to do this is to turn away suddenly and focus on something in nature…a flower, a bumblebee, whatever it is…and relish it and soak in the life energy it shares with me. Always puts me in a better place emotionally.
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Sameer January 20, 2012 at 08:15

Dear Steve,

One more feather in Melody’s cap… Great post, this will definitely help somebody who is near to me :o )

Bless you,

Steve Rice January 20, 2012 at 18:29

Thanks so much, Sameer. I am so grateful the post was of assistance.
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pmuralikannan@gmail.com January 20, 2012 at 13:12

Hello Melody,
God blessed us girl baby, how should we name her, we had lot of difference of opinion.I want my baby name, in the name of a God(old name – Dayanayaki Naachiyaar), but my wife does’t like it, she want short and latest name. I need your help.

Thank You.

Steve Rice January 20, 2012 at 18:30

Congratulations on the birth of your baby. I’m so happy for the joy in your life. (I’ll let Melody chime in on the name question)
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Melody Fletcher January 20, 2012 at 23:03

Hi Murali,
Congratulations on your beautiful baby girl!!!!

Well, I can’t tell you what to name your baby. That’s a very personal decision. But perhaps this will help: Why do you want to name your baby Dayanayaki Naachiyaar? What are your real reasons? Is it for tradition? To please some relatives? Or because you find the name beautiful? Why does your wife want to name her whatever the name she chose?

Keep in mind that this is your BABY’s name, not yours and it is your little girl who will carry this name with her all her life. So, here’s what I suggest: Look at your baby. Just focus on her, on how perfect she is and how amazing she’s going to be. She is a bringer of light, a part of the generation that is being born right into the middle of this huge change. She will be one of those who will usher in the new age that we’re in the middle of shifting into. She’s special.
Try some names out on her. Say the names to her. See how it feels when you do. Does it fit with her energy? Does it resonate? The age and origin of the name don’t matter. Neither do the opinions of relatives, or any traditions or trends. What matters is that the energy of it fits her being. Find the name for your baby, not for yourself or your wife. When you find the right name, you’ll both know it. :)

I hope that’s helpful.

Huge hugs,
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Zequeatta Jaques January 20, 2012 at 16:06

Great post. And yes the Law of Attraction does work. We all have ups and downs, but consciously, maintaining a positive attitude brings bigger and better things. Some days we just have to work harder at it.

Steve Rice January 20, 2012 at 18:32

Great point, Zequeatta. I struggle with that personally–the working harder part. I know there is a power with intention, but then I often devolve into trying to control the situation and worrying about all the “hows” will unfold.

It is a challenge to stay focused without creating resistance.
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Paige - simple mindfulness January 21, 2012 at 03:44

This is perfect, Steve! Stay in the present moment and make conscious choices in each moment. I also love the point about not beating yourself up over making an unwanted choice. Guilt, shame and all the related feelings do nothing to get us where we want to be. They just glue us in the past and it’s pretty hard to drive by looking through the rear view mirror.

I’m ordering the salad, steak, lobster and a big fat dessert!
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Steve Rice January 23, 2012 at 00:48

Great outlook, Paige! I like the steak/lobster…and the big fat dessert!

You are right…the analogy of those negative emotions “gluing” us to the past is so true.

Thanks for stopping by and connecting with me.
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Bryan Thompson January 21, 2012 at 17:48

Steve, interesting article. And I agree. It isn’t about beating yourself up wondering what thoughts you’ve been thinking. I think it’s important to be AWARE of your thoughts and to keep them fixed on the good things in your life. Yes, those adversities come up, but in my experience, you have the skill to deal with them when they do and get them out of the way. Sometimes they bring VERY good things with them.
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Steve Rice January 23, 2012 at 00:54

Absolutely right, Bryan. Thanks for stopping by. The adversities we face prepare us to live more authentically. We are always equipped to face them…we always were.

And, as you point out, they often bring hidden benefits.
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Derrek January 21, 2012 at 20:03

Very cool post, Steve.

At the end of the day I guess it’s pretty simple. Learn from the past, enjoy the present, and look towards creating a better future (or an ongoing great state of the present). Sometimes we tend to complicate this simplicity with worry and regret and desperation.

And the part about making what you already have work in your favor? So true. That’s the difference between those who are winners and those who have yet to be winners. Winners don’t wait for the perfect situation to be happy, they’re happy despite of the situation at hand. I think if we put aside all the stress and all the worry and clutter in our heads, we’ll find that either what we have is already beautiful, or that we have whatever it takes to make the present more beautiful than the past.

Again, cool post. Cheers!

Derrek January 21, 2012 at 20:04

*those who have yet to become winners

Steve Rice January 23, 2012 at 01:02

Thanks so much for stopping by, Derrek. Appreciate your insights.

I love the advice you present about being happy in the present…that is more powerful than we realize, I think.
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Sylviane Nuccio January 22, 2012 at 04:50

Hi Steve,

This is a very clear and easy to understand way of explaining how the law of attraction works. Not only we beat ourselves for are failures of yesterday and today, but sometimes, people who are supposed to love and support us are beating the crap out of us even more.

This is why it’s so important that people get educated in this area, to finally understand that what is happening to us is just the result of negative thinking and limited beliefs that have lock us up in a life we may not want or like. Learning to change such pattern is bound to help us change our lives.
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Steve Rice January 23, 2012 at 01:04

Great point, Sylviane! Those around us (who should be our greatest support, often are not supportive).

And you’re doubly-correct that when we recognize the thinking that produced our setbacks, we can change it…almost magically!

Thanks for your kind comment.
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Chrysta Bairre January 23, 2012 at 20:08

I loved this insight, Steve!

I try to avoid beating myself even when I made a major mistake, because beating myself up will never help me live a happy life and achieve my goals. I live a more productive and happy life when I can ask, “what am I going to do next?”

The idea that adversity is an opportunity for clarity is truly beautiful and takes my practice of focusing on what comes next and tempers it with acceptance. It’s not just about moving forward, it’s an opportunity to clarify what I want and clarity is never a mistake, it’s a gift!

Thanks for sharing this wisdom!

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Steve Rice January 26, 2012 at 06:49

Love, love love your perspective, Chrysta. Especially love this “Clarity is never a mistake, it’s a gift”
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Steve January 24, 2012 at 05:08

You have a really good point here. I like how you put it that adversity is an opportunity for clarity. Rather than just getting upset when things don’t go well you should just relax and direct it to something better. I can see how great changing focus like that can be.
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Steve Rice January 26, 2012 at 06:51

Thanks for your input, Steve. Really appreciate it…the key is relaxing and redirecting. You’re right. In a book I wrote, I had a chapter called “Relax into the Drop” and it was about this idea exactly. I used the analogy of a roller coaster and stated that when you relax into the momentum of the drop, then the ride is so much more thrilling than trying to brace against the momentum.
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Kimmie Gibbons February 9, 2012 at 01:30

Hello Steve,

I just came to Melody’s site to get some “feel good” vibrations and realized that you had commented back to my comment above! I forgot to hit the notify me of following comments buttons :) I just wanted to say thank you for your insight. I love getting small nudges that tell me I’m on the right track too and I am so glad I could be a part of that experience, thank you for mentioning it. I love this ““Life unfolds before me exactly as it is meant to for the highest good of all”. I am going to write it down and put it on my wall :) Oh, btw, I AM enjoying the salad!

CC June 17, 2013 at 17:42

Great post that I can relate to!!!!!
I was faced with adversity when I wasnt sure of my career path at that time and now having been through it all i am more CLEAR on what I want for my career!
Many thanks for the post :)

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