Overcoming Adversity: Conquering Life's Challenges

Eileen S. Lenson

Lenson Life Coaching

March, 2020:

"When Overcoming Adversity was published in 2018, I was impressed with the personal stories and the excellent teachings. With these very challenging times, it is more important than ever to read this book. The coronavirus has presented a challenge that many of us do not have the skills to work through. Eileen Lenson's book is so timely that I have decided to reread it to apply the teachings to myself so that I can survive and reach out to those I love. " — Amazon reader review

No one searches for adversity. Bad things happen. Yet how many of us will know what to do to prevent our lives from spiralling out of control when we encounter traumatic events that threaten our safety, careers, emotions, health, or relationships?

In this pragmatic and inspirational book, experienced US-based life coach and former psychotherapist Eileen Lenson shows us tools to turn suffering into hope and develop resilience by combining scientific research with an understanding of our emotional and spiritual lives. She cuts through existing myths and provides readers with a look into what it takes to not just overcome adversity and survive, but to thrive. 

Written to help anyone who finds themselves in a painful place, regardless of social background, culture, religion or education, each chapter describes from a scientific, psychological and spiritual perspective, why we do the things we do. Armed with this knowledge we can learn to manage our feelings and respond to devastating events with the skills to seek healthy coping options and change our lives for the better.

In this book you'll learn how to:

  • Use five core factors of your life — forgiveness, courage, perspective, perseverance, and hope — to reduce emotional suffering.
  • Identify and replace unproductive coping skills with healthy thoughts, feelings and behaviours.
  • Master new skills through practice exercises.
  • Benefit from the stories of others, just like you, who have faced and overcome adversity.

 ‘For anyone who is struggling with conflict, Eileen's book can help you overcome whatever obstacles are holding you back from living the life you truly want. Highly recommended.’ 

— Hal Elrod, #1 bestselling author, The Miracle Morning

'Shows how to successfully thrive in the face of complicated life situations.'


— Marshall Goldsmith, New York Times #1 bestselling author of Triggers.

Listen to Eileen talk about big life drama and daily discord on

Ellen Jackson's Potential Psychology Podcast:

Here's what readers say about this 5-star Amazon rated book:

'Well written and organized. A valuable tool for anyone facing adversity. The author gives us the perfect tools to fight back from adversity.'

"Whether you're dealing with a profound loss or every day ups and downs, this book is a wonderful resource for moving forward. Chocked full of inspirational stories, wisdom and studies, I found myself underlining passages for later review. It's the kind of book you'll want to keep on your shelf and refer to again and again.”


"Eileen Lenson’s book is unique amongst the plenty of "self help” books in bookstores and online. It is at its heart a "practical” book. It doesn’t just give platitudes. It discusses in detail the most prevalent issues relating to overcoming adversity, and then outlines a simple structure as to how to accomplish that employing realistic avenues. The beauty of the book is that every issue is structured, outlined, and explained using the same template, chapter by chapter. One might say that the book teaches one how to respond to adversity rather than to react to it. It can make all the emotional difference in the world.”

'4 emotional stars. A good guide for getting through struggles no matter how big or small.'

"This book really helps to recognize problems and, most important, how to handle them.
This is a great guide for everyone.”

"This is not your typical research driven book that complicates the message with technical terms and statistics that only other researchers would appreciate. This book is written in understandable terms and concepts that all can assimilate and provide the reader with clear direction on how to avoid becoming a victim to life's challenges. it is an easy read with a clear message on how to overcome adversity as the title suggests.”

'Well written book that offers great advice.Was easy to read and understand the author's viewpoint.Highly recommend.'

'The people Ms. Lenson interviewed were fascinating, and the struggles they shared in the book could have led them all to give up. Instead they all have that piece that allows one to push through and perservere. Lenson's book examines the steps one can take to do that too. You don't need to be an elite athlete to overcome obstacles. Instead by following this advice you can get there yourself.'

"Adversity is a gift, so I am always a skeptic at some of the self-help books about Adversity. They seem more motivational and/or inspirational versus being a guide to helping people identify and overcome adversity. In Elieen's book she shows us how to do this with tools to help with all levels of adversity, how to process them and does this with real stories. I think this can be a great source book for those that need tools to identify and overcome adversity."

Click here to read Netgalley reviews  

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About the Author

Eileen Lenson, MSW, ACSW, Board Certified Coach, has committed her professional career to helping people who are struggling with adversity. She is based in California and holds a Masters degree in Clinical Social Work, and prior to becoming a Professional Life Coach, was a practicing psychotherapist for over 20 years.Her broad experiences range from working with clients in medical and psychiatric hospitals, to her outpatient private practice. She has also developed and led support groups for parents who suffered the loss of a child, for couples going through a divorce, and for teens with social adjustment problems. In addition to her clinical work, she has spoken internationally on grief and bereavement. Author of a business book on psychotherapy and a chapter in a three-part volume on psychological trauma, Eileen has also written for newspapers and monthly columns, and taught seminars on adversity-related topics.


Adversity Is good. Overcoming it is even better. Trees grow stronger in high winds and people grow stronger with adversity and resistance. If I hadn’t gone bankrupt forty plus years ago, I would not have discovered that my problems were my transportation to my destiny i.e. becoming world’s bestselling non-fiction author and a high paid professional speaker. We all go through adversity and this book will inspire you to overcome it with excellence, elegance, and a decision to win bigger than ever.’

Mark Victor Hansen, Co-Creator of the Chicken Soup for the Soul series and Co-Chairman/Founder of Metamorphosis Energy LLC.


Everyone will face adversity at some time. Lenson provides a wealth of information that can change the way we look at life’s challenges. Research driven and written in a clear and insightful manner, this book is a must-read for discovering how to successfully thrive in the face of complicated life situations.’

Marshall Goldsmith, New York Times#1 bestselling author ofTriggersandWhat Got You Here Won’t Get You There.


Eileen Lenson has created an essential crutch read. A lifetime psychotherapist and life and business coach, she provides a detailed and elevating map to follow when we are slammed by unexpected and enervating adversity. And we shall be slammed. Long lives assure it and we are longer lived. Lenson identifies the reset button, and creates a practical guide to hold us up and to let us move forward. Hers is a lifetime read.’

Frank Keating, Former Governor of Oklahoma who oversaw the tragedies of the 1995 Oklahoma City bombing and the 72 devastating tornadoes of 1999.


Surviving was only part of my journey. The toughest part was continuing on. This insightful book will give you the tools to thrive in life to the fullest no matter what adversities you encounter.’

George Lamson, sole survivor of Galaxy Airlines Flight #203 in Reno, Nevada Featured in CNN 2014 documentary ‘Sole Survivor.’


Through ample clinical experience and cut-edge medical theory, Eileen Lenson shows us how our past traps us, and how to move forward by redefining our lives;for our own well-being, so asnot to suffer secondary victimization by the offender. A long awaited guide book that promises to go beyond the individual and well into international relations.

Akira Chiba, Consul General of Japan in Los Angeles


‘I know Eileen Lenson to be a committed and compassionate individual who has put much research and applied practice into this study. This book will assist its readers by offering practical means to apply in order to overcome hurt and adversity in their lives.’

Jeffrey D. Armstrong, President, California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo CA


For anyone who is struggling with a conflict, Eileen's book can help you overcome whatever obstacles are holding you back from living the life you truly want. Highly recommended.’

Hal Elrod, #1 bestselling author,The Miracle Morning

‘This is a warm, wonderful, inspiring book that will give you the practical tools you need to live a ­wonderful life.’

Brian Tracy, Author, Maximum Achievement, Earn What You’re Really Worth, Eat That Frog! and The Psychology of Achievement.

Table of Contents

  • Foreword by Vice Admiral David H. Buss, United States Navy, Retired
  • An Introduction To Overcoming Adversity
  • The Five Personal Components To Overcoming Adversity
  • The Three Spheres Of Support In Overcoming Adversity
  • Chapter 1: Forgiveness
  • What Is Forgiveness?
  • Why Is Forgiveness So Important?
  • What Forgiveness Is Not
  • Barriers To Forgiveness
  • How To Use the Three Spheres of Support To Achieve Forgiveness
  • Conclusion
  • Suggested Exercises for Using the Three Spheres of Support To Enhance Your Forgiveness
  • Chapter 2: Courage
  • What Is Courage?
  • Why Is Courage So Important?
  • What Courage Is Not
  • Barriers To Courage
  • How To Use The Three Spheres Of Support To Achieve Courage
  • Conclusion
  • Suggested Exercises for Using the Three Spheres of Support To Enhance Your Courage
  • Chapter 3: Perspective
  • What Is Perspective?
  • Why Is Perspective So Important?
  • What Perspective Is Not
  • Barriers To Perspective
  • How To Use The Three Spheres Of Support To Achieve Perspective
  • Conclusion
  • Suggested Exercises For Using The Three Spheres Of Support To Enhance Your Perspective-Taking Abilities
  • Chapter 4: Perseverance
  • What Is Perseverance?
  • Why Is Perseverance So Important?
  • What Perseverance Is Not
  • Barriers To Perseverance
  • How To Use The Three Spheres Of Support To Achieve Perseverance
  • Conclusion
  • Suggested Exercises For Using The Three Spheres Of Support To Enhance Your Perseverance
  • Chapter 5: Hope
  • What Is Hope?
  • Why Is Hope So Important?
  • What Hope Is Not
  • Barriers To Hope
  • How To Use The Three Spheres Of Support To Achieve Hope
  • Conclusion
  • Suggested Exercises Using the Three Spheres of Support To Enhance Your Hopefulness
  • Afterword
  • Endnotes