Using Disasters to Your Advantage

Law Day, one of the BIGGEST events I coordinate annually, has come to a close.

Everything that could have happened, happened! 5am I woke up extremely sick and it decides to rain cats and dogs on the day of the event. I had about an hour of rest time left before I needed to get up and prepare myself to look like Olivia Pope (fellas you have it easy). That’s right before I trample the city to pick up some last-minute items.

Anyhow, once I quickly nursed myself back to health and made it to campus, I quickly sprung into action. By the time everything was perfectly in its place, I grabbed a cup of coffee and sat down. Before I knew it, every representative that entered the building was soaking wet, drenched! Quickly the weather was getting worse and worse.

We had a hand full of students trickle in a little early. Knowing that the weather was going to hinder our student turnout, I didn’t worry about that too much.

The next thing I know, there were multiple emergency alerts sent to my phone of a tornado warning. Immediately afterwards there was an email sent out by the university president stating that every class and activity was cancelled and that everyone needed to take shelter. We followed orders. Every student, law representative, and support staff was huddled in the corridor of the gymnasium for safety.

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Total disaster right?

Well…au contriare. Get this!

For the students who were in the building at the time were some lucky cats! It was the perfect timing to REALLY get to know each representative on a personal level. Everyone came out of their suits (demeanor) really quickly. Within 2 minutes we all were just people. Some sitting on the floor, while others were propped up on top of the equipment just having a normal conversation.

Here’s the LESSON:

Keep in mind that disasters aren’t really disasters. They’re opportunities. Do not get caught up in the swindle of a problem. Step outside of everything, view your playing field, and work with whatever you find opportune to your favor. This takes a HIGH level of focus and quick instinct. Practice it!

Here’s what I tell my students.

You don’t impress me when you proficiently complete a task when things go smooth. Anyone can do that. But he or she who can complete a task in the eye of adversity does not only impress me, but it also forces me to remember you.

Notice I said “complete” and not “successfully complete“. During adversity it’s about getting the job done, even if it’s not to perfection.The key is to follow through. 98% of the people who try to perfectly finish through adversity, quit. Don’t take the risk, just finish. Completing is the success. #riseabove


Although the weather hindered my student turnout, on my end I successfully executed planning and setting up the actual event. The day wasn’t perfect, but I’m confident in saying that the day went as it should. What is beyond my control is simply not my problem. But I know one thing, it sure was an experience! πŸ™‚

*I’m going to share a secret. While everyone was in the corridor I snuck out to run to my car. After driving in the rain early that morning across town to pick up cupcakes for our guests, I was NOT letting them go to waste. On my way back to my car I seen a heavy dark cloud over a near by building and let me tell you, I was almost blown away with all the cupcakes in my hand. I quickly realized I’m that person in the movie who goes back for something in the midst of disaster! lol smh

As they say in the Hunger Games, “May the odds forever be in your favor!” πŸ™‚

elizabeth-banks-as-effie-trinket-in-the-hunger

Published by

Sarah Lee

Welcome! My name is Sarah Lee and I'm a Business Strategist and social entrepreneur who loves the outdoors, a good book, and scary movies year round! Throughout this quirky, rich, and mysterious life of mine, I genuinely love to 'share' my experiences as a learning tool. I thought, what better way to track my level of growth than by sharing my experiences and the lessons learned thereof, than in my blog? A wise woman once said, "You are your own masterpiece, therefore, instead of mastering it, master you."

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