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Perspective & Advice for Those Facing Insurmountable Odds

Throughout our journey with Voyage, the one thing we have learned over and over is that hidden within every challenge is a blessing or opportunity. It’s up to us to determine whether a challenge we face will be a step back or the catalyst for a step forward.

We had the honor of connecting with some of the city’s brightest female leaders and role models and we asked them our question of the month: What is the best advice you have for someone who feels like they are facing insurmountable odds.

Below, you’ll find their advice and links and other info so you can learn more about them, their work and how to connect with them. We’ll be interviewing many of these amazing women in the coming weeks, stay tuned.

Tia Diaz-Balart – Healthy lifestyle and travel aficionado. Breast cancer survivor and part of the SEED School of Miami team

This week we got to visit the Kennedy Space Center where every single thing was a challenge that at some point seemed insurmountable. It was only a few decades after the Wright brothers successfully had their first flight until we sent humans into not just outer space, but also the moon! There were countless people who thought the Wright brothers and the space engineers were absolutely insane for thinking we had a chance of doing any of those things. And yet they did it all and so much more.

So when facing something that seems insurmountable, here are a few steps that might help.

1. Dig deep and gain your own courage to persevere even if others think what you want to do is difficult or even impossible. Remember that you never want to look back on your life and wonder, “”what if”” or to regret not at least trying. So do everything you can to keep working towards your goal.

2. Reach out to others who either have knowledge and/or passion in the area you are striving for. When you bring brilliant minds together, miracles happen! They may have great feedback on how to overcome those challenges and they may become your greatest supporters in achieving your goal.

3. Give yourself some quiet time to think deeply about your challenge. Remove distractions such as your cell phones and simply sit and think. Sometimes we get inspiration when we remove some of the daily clutter and hustle.

Shelby Seidler | Realtor and Self-love advocate

The truth is, nothing is insurmountable, and you just have to trust me on that. Anyone who has overcome anything just went day by day, minute by minute. If things aren’t going well right now, list out what you’d like to change. Then write out what you could do to fix each thing. When you come to a thing you can’t do anything about, then let it go. And that’s how you conquer the world!


Monifresastyle | Personal stylist and personal shopper

Challenges often make us stronger, smarter and victorious (If you take them for what they are with a positive attitude). Good things are solemnly easily obtained, but there is always a way if you’re willing to be persistent and resilient. Often times it is right when we’re ready to give up that were closest to getting to where we want to be, so If you’ve already committed to something and are already on your way, regardless of how tired you may be right now, hold on a little longer and don’t give up on yourself, because that which you are looking for is closer than you can imagine.



Nicole Habib | MMS, PA | C Advanced Injector and Facial Sculptor

Never losing hope and having a clear vision of your goals are of the utmost importance. You will have days where you feel like you want to give up, but do not allow the bad days to tear you down. Let those days strengthen you- nothing worthwhile will ever come easy. All the hard time and struggles are going to serve you well while you are becoming the person you striving to be- you will be more empathetic, a better problem solver, you will gain powerful insight, and you will also be a better leader and role model. Your challenges are priming you to be the person you are meant to become. Embrace it and learn to love the challenges.

Erika Enid Abreu | Licensed Title Agent in Florida

Years ago, I realized that our most difficult and personal challenges offer a unique opportunity to open our eyes, explore new potentials and possibilities, and eliminate beliefs of limitation and doubt. Personal challenges are a way of working things out for ourselves and discovering new creative approaches for old problems.

We often view our problems as unfair and label it as an enemy that needs to be conquered. However, a different perspective is that challenges are our personal attempt to rise above fear, self-doubt, and insecurity. Rising to life’s challenges and overcoming personal obstacles is how we grow into a new higher potential of love and fulfillment. Of course we can feel overwhelmed and desperately wish that someone would wave a magic wand and whisk away all our problems. But if we could see our situation from a higher perspective we could also see that through the challenge we are learning that we can rely on ourselves even in the most difficult of situations.

Personal challenges help us to build our authentic self. Through them we discover how to develop empowering self-leadership skills. Challenges lead us to reach inside and activate creativity, resourcefulness, and wisdom. Personal challenges require that you must dig deeper than you ever thought possible – and what you discover is unexpected reservoirs of confidence, determination, self-esteem, and self-love.


Shasta | Yoga Enthusiast | Wellness Advocate

At one point in my life I was faced with many challenges at once. I honestly felt like I had no where to turn and no one to talk to . I just felt like throwing the towel in ! It took me a while to really understand that somethings in life we just can’t control.
But what we can control is the way we think, which creates our destiny ! It starts with how you think of yourself. You think Love, you will feel Love.
You think Hate and you will feel Hate.

My best advice to someone who is facing a challenge they feel is insurmountable, step out yourself and analyze the situation. Let yourself Feel then Release and move forward.
Take a moment, Acknowledge the thoughts you carry in your mind . Ask yourself .. Are these thoughts in my head positive?

The way we think plays a big factor in what we choose to perceive as our reality . I’ve been practicing yoga for five years now, not only have I grown physically stronger but spiritually and mentally stronger as well. I’m unlearning everything I was taught so that I can dig deeper within myself to find my peace!

If you are feeling like you’re stuck and you have no where to turn, look up beyond the sky and know that you have a purpose to fulfill. A purpose that is deeper than rap, a purpose that is intangible. If your vision is wavered and you feel like giving up think about one good thing in your life that you are grateful for and release it into the universe.
In times of despair you must allow yourself to feel whatever emotion it is that you’re feeling we are human. Trying to suppress your emotion can really take a toll in the long run. So we must not dwell in our despair. But embrace it and move forward.


Larissa Costa  | Personal trainer  | Owner | Bravafitmeals

Image Credit: @surraca

I think that nothing is impossible when you want to fulfill a dream.A lot of people will tell you that you can’t do it ,that you don’t have what it takes,but if it’s in your heart and you feel it,there is nothing that will stop you.It is like the sun-you can block it:it will shine regardless,if that is what you want.


Lumey Perez | Aspiring actor and yoga instructor

The best advice I’d give to someone facing these circumstances is to KEEP GOING. Time will pass eventually, it’s only a matter of what you do with it for YOUR own good. There’s no price tag on peace of mind in this crazy world.



Danielle Dam | Personal Trainer and Manager at Equinox South Beach

During any difficult time I always try to look inward. Remind myself of self-love. Meaning, if there is anything I am facing which won’t allow my journey and outcome to bring positive light to my life, I try to eliminate it. If it doesn’t serve you, get rid of it. Our time here is limited and we are all too precious and unique to allow anything that brews negativity to fester in our energy. Life is too short to not enjoy every second of it. 

fit with gabs | health and fitness inspo

My advice to those who feel they are facing an insurmountable would be to step back from your situation, look at the bigger picture and remember what’s really important. Do not stress the situation because it will accomplish nothing, my favorite way to clear my mind is to go for a run. It allows me to think clearly and focus on nothing but the situation on my mind.

Kaelyn DaCosta | Corporate Flight Attendant & Entrepreneur

My advice is to welcome challenges and setbacks as opportunities for reevaluation or revamp; and be conscious of how to cultivate an ambitious and open minded attitude in times of hardship because this is the road to transition. Knowing how to constantly adapt and build is crucial because in this life things are forever changing. Don’t get attached, do the work, and trust the process.


Kimberly | Motherhood & Lifestyle Blogger + Vlogger

Stay positive. You aren’t given anything you can’t handle, and there’s a way to overcome ANYTHING you are going through. Believe in yourself, take your time, and always stay positive.


Katja Rauhe | Commercial Actor and mom to teenage boys

I say, find your passion, trust in yourself and follow your heart! Don’t be afraid, and doors will open where you didn’t know they were going to be. Keep going, don’t doubt yourself. Nothing is impossible in this world if you put your mind to it and stay positive. It’s so hard sometimes, I doubt myself often but I learned to overcome my fears and trust my skills and embrace myself. I have the proof now that I can be awesome, even though I still have to remind myself sometimes. You have it in you to do well anywhere – follow your guts – You can do it!!” Feel free to alter it.

Sofia Venanzetti | Flexibility and Contortion Coach

Take a day at a time. Try to accomplish small things in regards to the big challenge, even if it means just taking care of yourself that day- like doing grocery or showering, doing laundry etc.
Usually we feel overwhelmed and just taking little steps – the first one being making sure we’re taking care of ourselves – is much better than thinking to solve whatever we’re dealing with overnight.
– Have a plan. Analyze the situation and keep in check your mental approach. Don’t try to solve something when you’re highly emotional or at night.
– surround yourself with supportive people. Even if this is an individual challenge, being alone is never helpful. Have friends or family on your side if you can. Even one person make a huge difference.
-Lastly, know that your mind mostly dictate the outcome of things. Train positive thinking, confidence and gratefulness. Everything is temporary and possible to deal with, be prepared and brave.

E. L. Lane | Copywriter | Social Media Consultant and Blogger

My advice to anyone who is facing a challenge that seems insurmountable is: start small. Find a small part of the obstacle you can face head on, and once you’ve taken care of it, tackle the next small task. You’ll come to find that breaking that huge challenge into small doable tasks, you’ll be up and over that challenge before you know it and you’ll be better equipped to deal with challenges in the future.


Alyssa Varas | yoga instructor | public relations student and founder of Blyss Yoga

You are in control of your thoughts, your emotions, your actions and, in turn, your destiny. Though certain challenges can make you feel overwhelmed and hopeless, it is important to take control of your mental state and to push through those emotions. Then, we can take control of our actions that will help us overcome those challenges. When we take control, we are confident and powerful. We can do anything.


WxldLotus | Rav Drummer |  Model | Jewelry Maker | Singer

I’ve learned that no matter how hard or far you feel you are from your goal, keep striving, keep trying, stay focused, and stay resilient. Everything may not happen according to your plan, but if you can see it, you can manifest it. “”Everything happens for a reason, but nothing lasts forever””, is what got me through Basic Training in the Military. Just be patient with yourself, write things down, document your progress, so you won’t feel like you haven’t done anything. Don’t expect to reach your goals in a certain type of way. Know you will get there. Don’t stress yourself out. Stay open to possibilities, and use your discernment with the opportunity that presents themselves. What is meant for you will come in its divine timing, so enjoy the process, learn the lessons, and have fun doing it! I also like to remain myself that the Most High/ Creator/God will never place me in a situation I can’t handle. When I feel super overwhelmed I step back and ask myself, what am I suppose to learn from this? What is this trying to teach me? Then, I can handle the situation in a calm, clear manner.

Candace Smith of CanDesLand | Lifestyle Blogger & Plus Size Fashion Expert

Just focus on the next step! Figure out what you can do right now that takes you one step closer to overcoming the challenge and do it. Then repeat.

Shayla Chablani | Motivator or Inspirational Icon

My Advice would be, first of all always face the challenge because that is what life is about, facing different challenges that make us grow as people, and we have the choice either to assume the challenge with a good attitude and a happy perspective or with a negative mindset. It all begins with a mindset, face your challenge with a happy and positive attitude and mindset and you will be surprised of how far you can reach, Remember to maintain a good attitude during all the challenges that life puts in your journey, because even in the darkest of times there is always a piece of light, the magic of how it works is that YOU decide to see it and fight for that piece of light every single day. And remember it is important to face challenges in our life in order to reach our goals and be the person we want to be, so never loose hope and always search for your light, even in the darkest of times.


Grethel La O & Giselle Herald of Design + Print Boutique

Photo by: Knight Owl Shots

At our core we are teachers and our bills are barely paid with our day (teaching) jobs. There are some that will try very hard to convince you teachers deal with popsicles and at most, tantrums. The reality is that our classrooms are shifting, and our kids are facing issues we are not prepared to handle. The teacher and human in us, do everything to make the experience at school happy, positive, and safe.
The best advice we give our students is: “You ARE NOT alone! We are here for you!” We may not always know how to help, but we will find someone/something that will.
We ultimately believe that when someone is facing an insurmountable challenge they do not want/need to be alone, whether they know it or not. Carrying the load with someone else makes things a little easier to handle and the feeling of being alone tugs a little less hard.
Our goal, regardless of the job we are doing, is to promote a welcoming space for all. We put love into this company because we want to create something that we are proud of and that will give us the opportunity to contribute to our community.
Also, to our moms, WE MADE IT! Thank you for all the sacrifices you have made for us to be able to do things we love. How lucky are we to have examples such as yourselves, leaving everything behind in Cuba for us to have an opportunity at a better life.

Gigi Carballo | Social Media Marketer | Blogger & Freelance Model

I’ve faced many challenges in my life, and if there’s one thing i’ve learned it’s that perspective is everything. If I could offer one piece of advice to someone facing a challenge they feel is insurmountable it would be to take a step back, try to view their challenge without attaching themselves to the outcome, and realize that they have the power to react however they choose. No challenge is too great, as great as it may seem, there’s always a new way to see things, and there’s always a choice to be made. One of my favorite quotes is this one by Charles R. Swindoll: “”Life is 10 percent what happens to you, and 90 percent how you react to it””. So, it’s how you face and respond to your challenges that really matters, and that’s where you truly learn and grow. 🙂


Jame Gonzalez | Fashion design student

The best advice I can give is to never sell yourself short, sometimes things get so overwhelming that it becomes easier to just give in or give up, but you always have it in you to complete whatever it is you desire or need. Never compare you’re success to others, we’re all different and some of us have to work harder to achieve our personal goals, always give it everything you do your absolutely 100 percent and that WILL be enough.


Rebecca O | CEO & Fashion Designer

Passion, Perseverance, and Consistency.

These key words have marked my life every step of the way. From an early age I discovered the amazing talent God had gifted and entrusted in my life to design and create women’s fashion. Despite this innate talent it’s been clear to me that life sidetracked my fashion journey for a long time. It was only the Passion that I carried within me that helped keep me focused on the ultimate goal of being a designer one day. Then, it was the relentless Perseverance to see my dream become a reality that helped me finally launch my own Rebecca O brand four short years ago. Today our Rebecca O brand thrives on Consistency creating one of kind pieces that always carry just a little piece of me in their creations. Elegance, sensuality and hand made exclusivity are some of the key attributes the make the Rebecca O brand so unique and sought after in the marketplace today. 

Colleen Egan | Integrative Health & Lifestyle Coach

Imagine for a moment you are hiking in a beautiful forest. As you look up, you see that you are surrounded by hundreds (perhaps thousands) of 350-foot trees towering over you. As you go deeper into the forest, you begin to lose your way. Panic begins to set in, and it feels as though you will never find you’re your way out. After some time, you decide to take a deep breath and realize that if you could just find a way to get a bird’s eye view of the forest you can begin to find your way out. It’s from that higher perspective you are able to recognize where you are and which direction you need to take.

Often times we cannot see our challenges as they really are when we are knee deep in the experience. In other words, we become so immersed in the nitty-gritty details and the emotional experience that we lose sight of the bigger picture, thus leaving us stuck and paralyzed.

You must leave the trees so you can see the whole forest. Essentially, you must see your challenge from a larger perspective in order to transcend it. This could mean seeking help from a loved one or a mentor who can offer a fresh perspective on what you’re facing. Speaking with someone from a different vantage point can offer insights and solutions that are difficult to see when you’re in the thick of it.

Once you feel you have a good grasp on what the problem is and how it can be solved, shift your attention by asking yourself, “what is one thing I can do right now that will lead me in the direction I want to go in?”” Putting too much emphasis on the challenge itself can be overwhelming and incredibly daunting, which leads to more “stuckness”. Be present in the moment and take incremental action one day at a time.

Lastly, for anyone who is facing a challenge that they feel is insurmountable is to express sincere gratitude every single day. Why is this so important? Because your mind is hardwired is help you survive. By default, your brain will immediately fixate on any obstacles and challenges as well as the things that aren’t working in your life. Gratitude off-sets this mechanism by shifting your attention from what isn’t working to what is already working. What you focus your attention on will grow. The more time you spend dwelling on a problem, the bigger that problem becomes. The same is true when you spend your time expressing gratitude for the abundance that already exists in your life. You will inevitably create more abundance. That is why it’s especially critical during moments of life altering changes and challenges you focus your attention on your blessings.

I deeply believe obstacles, challenges and setbacks are put in our path in order for us to grow and transcend into our highest selves. I encourage you to welcome all experiences into your life, the good, bad and the ugly, with love and grace. And remember that maybe, just maybe, you were given this mountain so you could show yourself, as well as those around you, that it can be moved.

Cristina Bastidas | Certified Surgical Assistant | Health Coach

Photo by: @la.mopo (Monica Molina)

I strongly believe that our mind is POWERFUL. It is your mind that will help you conquer anything. Whenever you’re going to accept a challenge, you got to dig deep to find your “”why””. Explore the reason why you want to start or achieve certain goals because it is that “”why”” that will keep you pushing through tough days that you wanted to give up. Another key characteristic is your ATTITUDE. Your attitude will be your best friend when facing any difficulty. As a marathon runner, anytime that I’m racing and I feel my body giving up, I repeat in my head “”I’m not done yet””! With that internal message, pushing towards the finish line becomes more manageable. Rather than focusing on the aches and pains, I focus on why I want it and how bad I want it.

Shir Goshen | Event planner specialized in balloons decoration in Miami area

Good things happen to good people that work hard and believe in their self.

Yasmine Souffrant | Entrepreneur & Poet

Nothing is impossible with God, and He never gives you more than you can handle. Yes, there may be obstacles in your way and your goal may seem unattainable but everything you need in order to succeed is already in you. Believe in yourself and believe in your strength and tenacity. You can do ANYTHING you put your mind to. 

Julia Cinquemani | Professional Ballerina with Miami City Ballet | Owner and Designer of Jule Dancewear

In the dance world there are so many ups and downs. From the highs of dancing my dream role, to the lows of getting injured, I have learned to accept the fluctuations as part of the business. If ballet has taught me anything, it has taught me to dig deep, be persistent and be true to myself.  I apply that same mentality when I’m creating for my dancewear line, Jule Dancewear. No matter the set back, I know what my goals are and that nothing will knock me off my path. Do not underestimate your ability to overcome anything that seems impossible. It can seem daunting to take your first step towards an uphill battle. The most important part is that you take that first step and that you are persistent in the steps that follow. If you believe in a dream or goal 100%, let it be known.

Danny Bermudez | Model and fitness coach

So that you can overcome this situation you must first change your thinking, what we believe with our mind we can generate in our lives.  Fear and distrust can not be an option.


Isabelle Scott | Psychologist and profesional salsa dancer

God is inside of you, and he is going to help you, so please, please look for him, just try!. You can begin praying, meditating, or expressing yourself through art.

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