IE 11 is not supported. For an optimal experience visit our site on another browser.

How to take advantage of  adversity

In their new book "The Adversity Advantage," Paul G. Stoltz and Erik Weihenmayer, who were guests on TODAY, offers tips on turning setbacks into successes.
/ Source: TODAY

We all face assorted adversities every day, ranging from minor hassles to major setbacks and even tragedies. But is it enough to merely cope with or overcome adversity? No, say Paul G. Stoltz and Erik Weihenmayer, authors of “The Adversity Advantage.” Stoltz, a business consultant, and Weihenmayer, the only blind person to have climbed the tallest peak on every continent, were invited on TODAY to discuss ways to turn adversity into a force that will bring out your best when you need it the most. Here is an excerpt from their book:

Adversity is one of the most potent forces in life. It shapes your character, clarifies your priorities, and defines your path. It can also fuel your greatness. Each of us faces a rich assortment of adversities every day, ranging from minor hassles to major setbacks and challenges, even tragedies. But merely coping with or overcoming adversity barely keeps you in the game. The key to success, both in business and in life, is learning how to become an alchemist and convert any adversity, major or minor, into a genuine advantage. The Adversity Advantage offers proven principles and practical tools that teach you how to use adversity as a force for superior achievement, resilience, agility, innovation, energy, and happiness.

Stoltz and Weihenmayer posit that any individual or enterprise can use adversity to power their ultimate success. Stoltz has spent decades decoding the human relationship with adversity and is the creator of the globally acclaimed Adversity Quotient®. His AQ® theory -- the most widely used method in the world for measuring and strengthening how we deal with adversity -- forms the foundation of this book. Weihenmayer is the exemplar of Stoltz's work and the seven principles taught in this book. He has triumphed over and gleaned tremendous advantage from seemingly insurmountable adversities, becoming the only blind man in history to reach the Seven Summits, the tallest peak on every continent, including Everest. These two adversity experts have married their dream-team combination of practical science and unmatched experience to develop seven guiding principles to teach you how to transform adversity into your most powerful advantage.

The Adversity Advantage blends Stoltz's proven leadership techniques and groundbreaking research with Erik's soul-stirring real-world anecdotes and wisdom. It will rewire your core response mechanisms to react optimally to anything that happens, the moment it strikes. You will move past avoiding or simply coping with adversity to harness its true power. Learn to pinpoint and grow your adversity strengths to bring out your best when you need it most, under pressure. Use adversity to pioneer new possibilities in your work and life.

Excerpted from “The Adversity Advantage" by Paul G. Stoltz and Erik Weihenmayer. Copyright ©2006 by Paul G. Stoltz and Erik Weihenmayer. Excerpted by permission of Fireside, a division of Simon & Schuster. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.