LIAM 003 – Man’s Search for Meaning – What do we do when life doesn’t go as expected?

Life_is_a_Marathon_RevisionIn Episode #3 of the Life Is A Marathon show, I review the book “Man’s Search for Meaning” by Viktor Frankl, taking the main points and applying them to our current lives. We explore the hard question many of us face at times in our lives: “What do we do when life doesn’t go as expected?”

When we can no longer change a situation, we are challenged to change ourselves. – Viktor Frankl

He who has a why to live for can bear almost any how. – Friedrich Nietzsche

Show outline:

  • Correction/Clarification of “Read, Fire, Aim” illustration
    • This is an example of making a mistake, being able to realign and fire again!
  • “When we can no longer change a situation, we are challenged to change ourselves.” – Viktor Frankl
  • Man’s Search for Meaning by Viktor Frankl
    • This book needs to be on everyone’s “must read” list!
  • Overview of the book
    • Horrible treatment of the prisoners
    • No longer called by names, just their numbers
    • What does one do when you have nothing left to lose but your ridiculously naked body?
  • What happens when life does not turn out or give you what you expected it to?
    • What do you do when you cannot control other people or circumstances?
    • How do you face significant loss or setbacks in life?
  • You must ask different questions
    • What does life expect from me?
    • What must I do to survive today?
  • It’s easier to be the “victim,” to point fingers and blame than it is to take responsibility for your attitude
    • You are 100% responsible for your thoughts and attitude
    • E + R = O
  • Peace comes when we let go how we think the world should be and find the truth of what is.
    • Acceptance of your life as it is now is the key to peace
    • Doesn’t mean you don’t work to change it
  • Survivors are more “other” focused than they are “me” focused
    • Focusing on helping and encouraging others strengthens yourself
    • Believe that you are part of something bigger than you and your own desires
    • Those who survived were not the strongest, meanest. They were the ones with a big WHY!
  • “He who has a why to live for can bear almost any how.” – Friedrich Nietzsche

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9 Responses to LIAM 003 – Man’s Search for Meaning – What do we do when life doesn’t go as expected?

  1. rach September 26, 2014 at 8:30 am #

    I’m really enjoying listening to your podcasts. I’m trying to start my day with yours or something similar instead of listening to the news.

    I love the idea of forgiveness but sometimes it’s just so hard. But then again I think do I want to forgive this person because it’s feels like they got away with it. I know in the end it’s me who suffers, though.

    I feel inspired to enrol in a half marathon but I’m not sure if I have enough time. I work part time and study. How many hours a week do you think I’d need to set aside to train as a beginner?

  2. Jeremy October 15, 2014 at 12:25 pm #

    Last month I unexpectedly lost my job and now I’m looking for work. Until recently, I saw that event as a shipwreck but now I realize that there is a lifeboat and I’m in it and I may not know where it’s going but have to hope and believe I am heading for a better future. This podcast was very helpful to me in helping me to reframe the “shift” or transition that is occurring for me. I haven’t read Frankl’s book but will look it up.

    • Bruce Van Horn October 15, 2014 at 8:26 pm #

      Jeremy, I’m sorry that you lost your job, but I believe you’re framing it properly–it is an opportunity for growth! I’m so glad to hear the podcasts are helping you–that’s exactly why I do them! Frankl’s book is great!

  3. Mer November 5, 2014 at 7:49 pm #

    Thank you for this wonderful post. For me, it is timed perfectly. It was just the message I needed to hear today. I love the quote from Frankl, and you’ve convinced me that I need to pick up his book. Thank you again!

  4. Dan Hathaway January 15, 2015 at 10:10 am #

    What a wonderful podcast! While I have not yet figured out the ‘how’ I had thought I’d done some good work on the ‘why.’ But, after today’s podcast, I can see I am still a ‘helpless victim’ in waaaay toooo many situations! In truth, I desperately needed the ‘wake up call’ (aka whack to the side of the head) you gave me this morning! My goodness, if someone could maintain a healthy outlook in a Nazi concentration camp….well, what am I whining about! I was given a B&N giftcard for Christmas and now I know what book I need to read! Looking forward to future episodes… I was tempted to ‘rush’ through these, but think I need to digest more slowly for maximum impact! Thanks again! Dan

    • Bruce Van Horn January 15, 2015 at 10:20 am #

      Dan, I’m so glad that show affected you in a positive way! I very much appreciate the feedback! You will love Man’s Search for Meaning!

      I’m glad you are taking the time to go through each episode. You might, however, want to jump up to #50 and work through your Life Plan with me!


  5. María December 27, 2015 at 3:28 pm #

    Just great, Bruce!

  6. Luis May 15, 2016 at 3:49 pm #

    I started to listen to your podcasts.
    Thank you for being like you are and tell people these greats lessons of life.

    I am following you now.

    Thanks again Bruce!

  7. Dayle February 4, 2017 at 12:50 am #

    Hey Bruce, I just wanted to say thank you so much for your podcast. It is really inspirng and helpful, I never thought anything like this would ever be of help until I found you… so thanks. Oh, and I dont know if you’ve already used this quote in a seesion that I haven’t heard yet, but your session number 3 reminded me of this quote..

    “Yesterday is history, tomorrow is a mystery, today is a gift, that’s why it’s called the present.” – Alice Morse Earle

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