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LESSONS FROM AN EARTHQUAKE SURVIVOR

When facing adversity, think only of finding your way out, and do not allow thoughts of failure in. “Look for the Light.”

The other morning I watched the interview of an American who was rescued from the rubble of the earthquake in Haiti. She was buried with friends in a hotel for 50 hours. She apparently had a little room to move. She said that all she thought about was “looking for the light.” She spent all of her time probing through the rubble and “looking for the light.” She said one of her comrades was nearby and she heard him say that he was not going to make it. He didn’t. When Meredith Vieira asked her what she was thinking about, she said, “I was just looking for the light.” Meredith asked if she was scared. She replied that she “did not go there.” She just “looked for the light.” I know I have repeated “look for the light” many times in this article, but that is just about all this survivor said. She just, “looked for the light.”

This is a tremendous life lesson. As a family lawyer and litigator, I have studied adversity and methods and thoughts for dealing with it. There are many good ways to look at adversity. But this story really struck me as the quintessential story of survival. Simply, always, “look for the light.” When it comes to the negative stuff, “don’t go there.” As you go through any life difficulty, remind yourself constantly, “look for the light.” When thoughts of disaster creep into your mind, repeat to yourself, “look for the light.”