Embodying A Winner's Mentality: How Career Adversity Strengthened And Shaped My Character Although the struggle of my life's current challenges is far from being over (for now at least), my character has undergone a profound level of transformation that's completely changed the way I work and engage in situations that I simply didn't desire to be in.

By Jamilla D. Ali

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

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It's no secret to the readers of my articles so far that I have experienced a considerable amount of obstacles during my career and personal life trajectory. Although the struggle of my life's current challenges is far from being over (for now at least), my character has undergone a profound level of transformation that's completely changed the way I work and engage in situations that I simply didn't desire to be in.

In my opinion, it doesn't matter if you're an entrepreneur, a musician, a CEO or a plain Jane. Rising to the occasion, especially during times of career difficulty, should be incorporated into the mentality of those who crave growth, development, and success. It's effortless to remain stagnant when you're not happy, but it takes strong character to utilize how a transitional phase can work for you.

For example, I worked several jobs that didn't require education or a special skillset after graduating college. It was easy for me to feel above it all, and simply show disinterest behind close doors. I felt, my education shouldn't be in vain, and my fearless travels gave me a niche others may not have. However, after coming across an article written by Fida Chaaban on Entrepreneur Middle East sometime ago, it triggered a light bulb moment for me. She wrote: "Being able to rise up to the occasion is, often, what sets the winners apart from the losers."

As a writer, I believe our readers have the ability to interpret the author's experiences and knowledge in their own way. For me, Fida's words were not only encouraging to those who need to rise up, it offered a lesson in showing up, even in the face of adversity. Although I'm in a place that seemingly isn't beneficial to me, it shouldn't have the ability to take away the winner's spirit that I've carried with me ever since I can remember. Character is so much more then what jobs, cars, and education can give you. Character is partially who you become when the vision you have for yourself hasn't materialized, and the uncertainty of your future becomes a blur.

I recently met two entrepreneurs who are both in the startup phases of their business. One is working part-time as a coffee barista, while the other drives for a mobile taxi app. It was evident the success of their business was priority one. However, both entrepreneurs demonstrated the utmost appreciation for the jobs they had to work, in order to bring their dreams to life. Not once did they verbalize dissatisfaction or unappreciative demeanor for their current situations. Instead they gave 100% to their enterprises, from my observation, and welcomed the sacrifice of working service jobs in order to help align with their entrepreneurial goals.

Where you are now may not be ideal, but a winner's mentality strives to win, even when the situation may not be worth winning. Instead of complaining or not giving it your all, attempt to make it work for you in the time you have in order to prepare for the next phase. Success could be right around the corner, but keep in mind success is materialistic, and your character ultimately belongs to you and the spirit you've continuously built it on.

Related: Entrepreneurship Leaves No Room For Laziness

Jamilla D. Ali is a native New Yorker and graduate of Saint Francis College in Brooklyn, New York. Jamilla previously worked at a boutique branding agency in Dubai, United Arab Emirates where she  was responsible for all new client business development efforts. Prior to Jamilla’s experience in Dubai, she was a writer for various startup blogs catered to the underground hip hop music scene and cultural activities in and around the New York City area. Jamilla continues to pursue multiple disciplines and aspires to write a book documenting her life changing experiences at home and abroad. 

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