For over eighteen years, I have held countless seminars, live webcasts and speaking presentations for Continuing Legal Education credits (not counting online on demand programs to most everywhere) to people all over North Carolina, but also to people in a number of other states, including, but not limited to, South Carolina, Virginia, Georgia and even in faraway places such as Kentucky, Iowa, Oklahoma and Arizona.
All of these presentations have had a similar theme of facing adversity and how to find out a way back as I have used my own experiences in life as the pretext for my ideas and thoughts. But I have learned much from everyone I have met along the way, and it is because of what you and many others have said and spoken at these events that I have been able to keep everything fresh and still, although the programs seem like some of the same stories, they are often done with a different take or twist.
Everyone faces adversity. It is a part of life, both professionally and personally. Sometimes more than once. The question for you is what do you do when that happens. You know you are supposed to get back up and start over, hopefully better than before. But to make those thoughts and words more than just that, you need to think how you can and will do that. You need a plan.
A long time ago, I faced serious adversity after a lifetime of accomplishment. Most all that I had done well in my life was put in jeopardy and the rest was simply gone forever. Almost immediately with the help of family, friends and professional help, I did in fact figure out how to start over. While everyone’s situation is different, in the years since that time, I have learned there are several immovable principles that are the key to survival and a new beginning. Such ideas as never giving up, persistence, truthfulness, humility, faith and even humor all play a major role in putting one foot in front of the other.
I did not initially believe in the ravages of serious depression or even the practice of psychiatry. I thought that if I smiled and was pleasant enough, all would be well. Well, that thinking was dead wrong. The title and thoughts of the Mental Health Hour is An Illness Hidden with a Smile. But while talking about falling into depression, I also want to share with you how I recovered from it and how, I think, you can as well.
The Ethics portion of the morning program is Facing Adversity. The afternoon session is about the choices you make in your career and personal life, titled Oh, the Choices You will Make.