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Avoid Adversity or Struggle Through It? Why You May Want To Think Twice About Taking The Easy Road

Claire at Leadville

We live in a society where we create many beliefs that are not based in reality. We make everybody a “winner” regardless of their actual performance. We create special days to celebrate — on top of traditional holidays. And many conservatives still want creationism taught in schools – despite overwhelming evidence proving evolution. Is this really the best way?

Young people today are more entitled than ever. From early on they are taught that if the branch is too high, someone should bring a ladder. Fighting hard for anything seems, well, pointless. People who push their limits are called obsessed and shunned by the majority –who purports that “balance” is the best way.

It seems as though we searched for equality for so long, that now, our society does not know how to promote accomplishment while being politically correct.

What do we call people with high standards who refuse to lower them? We call them elites.

In her upcoming book, Leverage, Claire Nana talks about the importance of setbacks and how we grow through the struggle, which is counter to what we so commonly hear – that we should either avoid struggle, or quickly get over it.

Nana goes on to cite study after study that presents a radically different approach to healing and wholeness. Here is the description:

“Leverage reveals how the act of struggling with adversity produces growth – and how shortening this process may diminish your development rather than further it. By opening yourself to the possibility of both positive and negative outcomes, you leave room for unexpected, transformative opportunities. When you engage in the journey, instead of blindly racing toward victory, you learn how to find joy and appreciation for life regardless of your circumstances, form deep and meaningful relationships, discover your strengths and deepen your faith. Leverage invites you to take a deep breath and embark on an arduous adventure that will give you back your life.”

Contrary to the societal direction, a counter culture slowly is taking place in the arena of sports, namely, Cross fit camps, marathons, triathlons, and ultra-running. These sports came to life again after having a small presence in the past few decades due to perhaps the need to push the limits. Not surprisingly, many of the participants do not adhere to an easy road and believe they should push themselves harder than ever before. And as a result, many have seen their lives changing for the better and, along the way, developed a new appreciation for something earned the hard way. That’s because getting out of their comfort zones, they’ve discovered new strengths, and infinite possibilities.

So why did I push myself so much? Because in my four years of racing ultra-marathons I discovered something amazing and powerful: you have to be brave enough to face your deepest fears in order to truly live. Once you do that there is no going back to the person you were before, there is only forward, there is only more to discover, more to become.

When you commit to something bigger, life becomes real!


Avoid Adversity or Struggle Through It? Why You May Want To Think Twice About Taking The Easy Road

Andrei Nana

Andrei Nana is a licensed attorney, specializing in business law, business owner, and ultra-runner. Andrei has completed 22 races of 100+ miles or 24 hours, including the Spartathlon in 2013 and 2014 – finishing 2nd American and 27th overall in 2013. Recognizing the need for organization in international ultrarunning, Andrei founded the International 100+ UltraRunning Foundation, which focuses on developing elite international ultrarunning. Nana is also the creator of the first six day race in Florida, the Icarus Florida UltraFest. Sought out for his ability to overcome excuses and his unique approach to commitments, Andrei created Nana Endurance Training and frequently presents to organizations, businesses and works directly with individuals.

For more information about Andrei, visit: or

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APA Reference
Nana, A. (2015). Avoid Adversity or Struggle Through It? Why You May Want To Think Twice About Taking The Easy Road. Psych Central. Retrieved on March 19, 2019, from


Last updated: 8 Mar 2015
Last reviewed: By John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on 8 Mar 2015
Published on All rights reserved.