Primary Eye Care Associates - September/October 2019



Nobody’s life is free of challenges, and it seems like new ones appear at every turn. But how we choose to deal with those hurdles is what defines us. Knowing that I have a choice in how I approach hardship and struggle in my life is a guiding principle that carried me through my childhood, through my time as a university student, and into my career. I was always a shy kid growing up, which meant I was a target for bullies at school. I don’t know if there’s less bullying today than there was back then, but awareness is definitely higher. I didn’t feel like I had the option to go to an adult for help because I thought if my parents talked to the school, it would only escalate the bullying problem. Instead, I would hide my torn shirt from my mom when I got home and go to school terrified the next day. setting where this realization set in, I think it happened during a sermon at church. Like a lot of kids, I think I had kind of zoned out while the pastor was speaking, but my mom nudged me to pay attention just in time to hear what I needed to. The pastor said we have the power to create the circumstances we’re in. Now, I can’t remember the larger context of that statement, but to Then one day, I decided I had enough. While I can’t remember the exact

a third-grader, it meant that I had the power to conquer my shyness and end the bullying. I found that how I spent the first five minutes after I woke up each morning would ultimately determine how I approached each day. Doing something as simple as making my bed right after I got up made me positive and productive, and it really cleared my mind. I would hold my head a little higher when I walked to school, and my increased confidence meant I was bullied less. As I grew up, I found that my own perception of my circumstances led to more blessings. Instead of feeling nervous about going to college, I would tell myself I was going to be a great student. And I was. I also told myself I would be a great parent before my kids were born, and I would make a great eye doctor as I started my career. I strive to maintain that positivity every day, and so far, it seems like the universe has given me the things I told myself I would achieve. I read about three books a week, and a recurring theme in some of these books is the idea that instead of letting fear creep to the forefront of our minds, we can combat it with positive thoughts. It’s something I try really hard to instill

in my kids and my staff. They have the power to positively impact their environment and whomever they want to influence. I don’t want to make it sound like nothing will ever go wrong for you if you just think positively, though. Sometimes, despite our best efforts, challenges and hardships arise. Often, however, missed opportunities and negative outcomes can mean something better is just around the corner. We can view our mistakes with despair, or we can see them as learning opportunities. If you’re at a point in your life where it feels like nothing is going right, just remember this: Success can only happen because of our failures and how we perceive them. Great things are waiting just around the corner. Are you willing to push forward with a positive mindset and seize them?

Until next time, eye’ll see you then!

–Steven Chander

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