Adversity: Build Resiliency in the VUCA World

Adversity makes us stronger. To thrive in the VUCA world, we must develop a growth mindset and resiliency skills. Today, let’s reflect on the wise words of Epicurus.

The misfortune of the wise is better than the prosperity of the fool.


These days we talk about Adversity Quotient, grit, and resilience. we do understand that our ability to face adversity is linked to our success.

People with a growth mindset are not afraid to face new challenges and make mistakes. They don’t want to fail, but they are not afraid to fail either.

Epicurus thinks that wise people can learn from their misfortunes. They can rise up and bounce forward. Their misfortunes do not speak about themselves. A crisis is temporary.

On the other hand, a fool wastes his good fortune. He wastes his money on vices and parties thinking that doing so would get the admiration of others. A fool will spend his money as fast as he gets it for he believes he does not deserve any.

Be Resilient

VUCA means volatile, uncertain, complex, and ambiguous. We have seen that firsthand during the pandemic. We continue to live in an anxious world. Leaders are in the dark as to how to lead.

Those who consider themselves genius found themselves clueless. Those who teach people how to manage difficult situations found themselves not in control.

I want you to know that we can navigate through crises.

Allow me to share ideas you can use to face adversities in life. Let’s turn VUCA into positive opportunities.


Your vision is your dream of the world you dream about. It is easy to navigate through calm weather. In the middle of the storm, most people panic. They think only of how to survive.

In times of adversity, you don’t have to forget your vision. Whatever is your dream for your community, for your family, and for yourself must remain. What you will change are your strategy and your tactics.

It is okay to pivot and find new ways.


In August 2020 Philippines, I realized that my government was clueless as to how to solve the pandemic problems. But for months, I was waiting for solutions from the government.

And that did not help me.

In times of adversity, we have to recognize our situation. There are things that are not within our control. But there are things that are within our control.

And our understanding of our situation can help us see things clearly.


You need clarity in a crisis. That means being clear about your objectives.

While planting vegetables, it dawned on me that my objectives are only two.

The first is to ensure that my family survives the crisis. I should keep my family safe from Covid-19, and ensure that I continue earning.

I was not earning for months for in-person training wasn’t ideal. But it does not mean that there is no other way.

The second objective is to prepare for the future. The crisis will be over. People will need new solutions. I can be ahead of what’s possible.

Clarity helps you simplify what is complex. When you are clear about what you must do, your actions become intentional.


Agility is your ability to make decisions and move quickly. You develop agility when you build skills long before you need them.

During the pandemic, I observed that those who thrive are those who are comfortable with chaos. You can turn chaos into magic when you have understanding and clarity about what you really want. Chaos is chaos only to those who don’t see what’s happening.

You become agile, therefore when you have vision, understanding, and clarity.

Adversity makes you win.

Winners embrace adversity. The VUCA world is not something we have to be afraid of. We can thrive in a crisis.

Adversity brings out the extraordinary in you.

Learning Opportunities

I design and deliver new leadership learning experiences. Explore these leadership training programs.

leadership training philippines

Leadership Training Programs

Develop effective leaders in the Philippines with our practical, immersive leadership training. Our approach focuses on adapting to change, not just managing it, and moving beyond traditional one-size-fits-all methods to cultivate impactful leadership skills.

Leadership Training

The aim of leadership training is to provide leaders with a good foundation and to help them develop leadership skills and vital behaviors that bring better results.

Jef Menguin

Scroll to Top