The Chinese word for “crisis” is depicted by the symbols in the illustration above. Over the years, this two character word has frequently been recognized and interpreted to mean “danger” and “opportunity.”
Disclaimer: *Since I don’t read or write Chinese, I can only assume that this information is correct based on the research I did online.
During the throes of my divorce, when my life was a series of one crises after another, I discovered this little piece of information. For some reason, it served to not only inspire me but kept me strong throughout my ordeal.
Being an individual who doesn’t believe in accidents or coincidences, stumbling upon this tidbit of wisdom appeared to have been the heaven-sent message I was waiting for to help move the trajectory of my life forward in a positive way.
After all, without a doubt I was in danger during that mother of all crises I was trying to survive.
I definitely got the danger part.
What I wasn’t quite seeing clearly was the opportunity part.
What wonderful occurrence could possibly come out of this test and trial of my existence?
For the past few years, I held onto this notion that out of danger comes great and wonderful opportunity.
Truth be told, in the grand scheme of things, I was due for something amazing — like winning the mega millions lottery for all of my troubles.
Now that would have opened up some doors for some phenomenal opportunities!
However, to be perfectly honest, the opportunities that have been presenting themselves have not been the type I had in mind or hoped for.
Instead I kept being presented with more life lessons and experiences I never imagined were possible.
So I decided to revisit this notion about crisis meaning danger and opportunity.
Maybe I misinterpreted the whole thing.
What I found was a little surprising.
According to Wikipedia, this meaning which has been frequently used by Western motivational speakers as well as business consultants and politicians is basically incorrect.
Just my luck!!!
It turns out that the correct interpretation is more like danger + a point where things happen or change.
Correct me if I’m wrong, but isn’t that usually the case when danger presents itself?
When perilousness occurs, things definitely happen or change — and rather quickly, I might add!
But then again, with danger comes the opportunity to face the circumstance in a new manner and develop a new perspective. Nothing will be the same as a result of experiencing some life-altering event.
That could be a wonderful thing!
Looking back over the course my life has taken over the past several years, I now realize that each of the calamities I faced, every road block that appeared on my path, all of the insurmountable set-backs I endured all conspired to shape and mold me into the person I am today.
Even though things did not turn out the way I expected, they turned out for the best.
Everything needed to happen exactly when they did and how they did to give me the skills, courage, experience and will to move forward and carve out a new life for myself.
To become the person I was meant to be.
Now if that isn’t a great opportunity, I don’t know what is.