As an executive life coach who has been helping high-achieving professionals overcome obstacles in their careers and lives since 2013, Rainy Rainmaker is no stranger to adversity and negativity. Growing up in a turbulent family environment where she often felt anger, fear, insecurity, and sadness, Rainy was constantly reminded that life becomes painful and terrible when things go wrong. Even as an adult, she spent eleven years of her life stuck in a toxic marriage where she was verbally abused, constantly belittled, and treated as invisible by her spouse. She battled depression for five years, not knowing if she could ever be helped.
Her turning point came the day she decided that she had had enough, and found the determination to do whatever it took to break out of her prison of self-imposed misery. She invested time and money attending personal development courses and seminars, looking to purge herself of the unhealthy belief systems that she had been conditioned to live by. Over time, she slowly rediscovered how to love herself, and learned to bring out her authentic best self. As she progressed with a renewed purpose in life, she joined a community of coaches dedicated to serving and bringing out the best in people.
Even as someone who has overcome her adversity and is living her life with a newfound light, Rainy recounts a recent incident where she had to deal with her divorce, an excruciating experience that shattered her world and made her feel like she had lost everything. Her training in practical mind and emotional mastery did little to dampen the pain she felt. The immense anger, hatred, and regret that Rainy carried with her as a result of her emotional trauma began manifesting themselves physically as eczema on the backs of her knees and psoriasis on her scalp. On top of that, the nagging fear and uncertainty of what lay ahead left her constantly exasperated.
However, she came to the conclusion that she had two choices: continue feeling bitter and sink deeper into her miserable world like many other victims who were defeated by their setbacks, or let her misery go and bounce forward like a heroine.
She chose to let her misery go for the sake of her freedom, happiness, and future. She knew it was going to be a tough process, but she made a promise to herself that she would turn her greatest pain into her greatest strength. It was only when she found a new purpose in life that she was able to get back up and bounce forward. She wanted to help people so that no one will ever feel invisible and small.
With iron will and hard work, in less than 12 months after her divorce, she took a leap of faith, transitioning into full-time executive life coaching and establishing her own coaching business. She became an author and trainer who got paid doing what she loved—all while nursing her broken heart.
Rainy’s proudest accomplishment was when her 9-year-old son told her, “Mommy, I’m so proud of you.” That was the moment she felt that all her tears, fears, as well as the money and time she invested to bounce forward really paid off.
This setback gave her a new revelation: “As long as we’re still living, we’re bound to experience adversity. There will be fears and insecurity of the unknown and we will be forced to change. Whether or not we can turn our adversity into opportunity depends on how we respond to it.”
So if you feel afraid in the face of adversity, here is the 8-step process that has helped Rainy, as well as her clients, bounce forward from their setbacks :
- DECIDE: Decide that you’ve had enough of feeling hopeless and bitter. Decide that you want to change and will do whatever it takes to rebuild your life.
- BELIEVE: Believe that the best has yet to come, and that the higher powers above have the best plan for you.
- RELEASE: Release the emotional baggage that keeps you trapped in your emotional prison. Release the limiting beliefs that have been keeping you small and invisible.
- FOCUS on the upside: How can you turn this adversity into opportunity? What possibilities can you create? What if you CAN? How would you feel about yourself? How would you impact the people you love, and your world?
- Reprogram your mind with an achiever’s mindset, one that empowers you to take massive action and achieve great success.
- Find a higher purpose, create a new vision and strategic action plan to achieve them.
- Make it a MUST to achieve your vision. Ask yourself WHY it is a MUST to make it happen. WHY must you make it happen NOW? What are the consequences of not achieving what you want? What are the costs—mentally, physically, emotionally, financially? Fast forward your mind and emotions 30 years ahead into the future. How would your life look and feel like if nothing changes?
- Get a mentor, a coach who can guide you to navigate the changes. Whatever problems you are experiencing right now, there are people who have been there and done that. It makes your journey so much easier and faster when you’re willing to reach out for help.
Adversity isn’t comfortable for many of us. Like a butterfly that has to struggle to break free from its cocoon, it takes strength and persistence to grow. Before change happens, we experience so much fear, self-doubt, and uncertainty. We can be freaked out by our own fearful thoughts, such as “What if I fail? What if I can’t make it?”
However, there is an immense feeling of gratification, liberation and pride when we overcome our adversity and break through the restraints that have been holding us back from living as our authentic best selves.
In February 2020, when the COVID-19 outbreak put the world on lockdown and the world was engulfed by uncertainty and doubt, Rainy started a community called #HeartTalk in Singapore, a nurturing, positive and uplifting tribe of like-minded people looking to improve their relationships and live a more fulfilled life. To help navigate people through adversity and motivate them to start taking action, Rainy often leaves people with this quote of her own: “Whether you realise it or not, disempowering thoughts sneak into your head because you let your past results define your future outcome. Action is what sets me free from fear, what about you?”