In life there is only one thing that we as ourselves can control; we can’t decide what is going to happen around us on a specific day, or how other people will react to our actions, but what we can control is our mind, and in difficult situations what separates the people who thrive from the ones who wither away is that ability to control your thoughts rather than them controlling you. Hope can be the light at the end of the tunnel, the force that sets us up to overcome what’s ahead, but alongside hope lies resilience, adversity, and survival; and to truly understand what makes up a story of hope, we have to recognize how these other three components play a part in the bigger picture.
When we hear stories of people overcoming challenges such as Bethany Hamilton’s shark attack survival or Jasan Zimmerman beating cancer on numerous occasions, they all share the same ideas, and it’s no coincidence. A story of hope is much more than just a feeling of expectation and desire for a certain thing to happen, but rather it is one that drives resilience and ability to overcome adversity. All these traits can be learned, but what I’ve come to realize after hearing multiple stories is that people in situations tend to learn through reflecting on the experiences rather than during it. I believe that we’re all born with some form of resilience and everyone has the ability to mentally make it out of difficult circumstances, the question is do you have the desire to do it. Like hope, resilience doesn’t mean much on its own, when you’ve built the capacity to find meaning in situations and can improvise with what you have, then you can take that into the adversities you face.
When these words are brought up three people come to mind, Jadon Sancho, Marcus Rashford, and Bukayo Saka. Although they weren’t in life or death situations like the other examples we’ve looked at, there is no doubt they faced adversities, showed resilience and now prove as role models of hope. As much as I hate to bring it up, the three of them missed their penalties in the Euro 2020 final which ended in England losing the biggest game they’ve been in for a long while. However, what separates these three is what they’re doing now, all of them are arguably the best in their club leading their teams to greatness all at the ages of under 25.
Our mind is a powerful thing, but when we can control it, it heavily works in our favour and can put us in positions that wouldn’t seem possible. What makes a story of hope what it is, is what people do afterwards, where does that hope lead you, and if you can find yourself in a spot where you can thrive and accept your losses and turn them into positives, that’s what makes a story of hope.