Preview Mode Links will not work in preview mode

The Adversity Advantage

Feb 15, 2021

Holocaust Survivor Dr. Edith Eger on Finding Faith, Forgiveness, Hope and Freedom!!!


Viktor Frankl states “When we are no longer able to change a situation, we are challenged to change ourselves.” 


Unfortunate events, trials and hardships will always come. But what defines us isn’t the situation itself, it’s our response. Control what you can, focus your energy on the positive and have faith that things will get better. While this approach won’t guarantee you success, the alternative certainly will push you further away from it.


My guest today is a survivor of one of the most horrific, challenging and dark times the world has ever seen: the Holocaust. As a teenager, she and her family were sent to Auschwitz, one of the most horrendous concentration camps of that time.


I can’t even begin to imagine how traumatic, difficult and frightening it was for her. Many of you are wondering if her situation could possibly get any worse. It did. Her parents were killed in the gas chamber the day they arrived. 


Some of her mother’s last words to her were this:  


“We don’t know where we’re are going. We don't know what's going to happen. Just remember, no one can take away what you’ve put in your mind.”


She took those words to heart and they became the core for her survival. Today, she is not only surviving, but she is thriving.


Dr. Edith Eger who is 93 years old, joins me on the show today. She is a highly sought after psychologist, author and keynote speaker. Edie, as her friends affectionately call her, obtained her doctorate in psychology and learned to use her imprisonment at Auschwitz as a powerful analogy for the prisons we create in our own minds. Her mission is now to inspire others to discard their limitations and find renewal and freedom within themselves. After becoming a New York Times Bestselling Author with her memoir, "The Choice," Dr. Eger wrote a hands-on guide to overcoming trauma called "The Gift: 12 Lessons to Save Your Life." It was released last fall. 


We talk about how to maintain faith despite any horrible situation, finding forgiveness, redefining who you are as a person despite your past and maintaining your sanity as well as controlling your emotions during times of distress. We also discuss why you can’t heal what you don’t feel and why she needed to return to Auschwitz to heal from her traumatic experience and more!


Topics discussed:


  • How Dr. Edith’s faith in God evolved through the years and even during those hard times.


  • Advice for someone who's in the moments of feeling spiritually lost, and they just don't know what to believe in


  • How to be able to redefine who you were as a person, despite your past


  • How going back to Auschwitz helped Dr. Edith to move through that dark time in her life.


  • Mom of Dr. Edith’s last words and how it helped her navigate through all the horrible experiences and turned them into something positive


  • Dr. Edith’s advice for the people as a society to come together and display a sense of unity


  • Things that Dr. Edith regrets 


  • Dr. Edith’s opinion about the word “rejection”


  • Dr. Edith talks about forgiveness


  • The difference between belief and faith

Words of wisdom from Dr. Edith Eger:


It's very important to differentiate between reacting or responding.


“The darker things appear to be, the closer I felt the wonderful God that taught me how to turn hatred into pity.” - Dr. Edith Eger


Whatever happened to you, you cannot change the past, but you can change your attitude.


You cannot heal what you don't fear.


“I think young, but not young and foolish. It's very important to be young and be childlike, but not childish.” - Dr. Edith Eger


God gave us temptations so we can practice the freedom of choice.


Anger is not the primary emotion. Underneath the anger is a lot of fear. And love and fear does not co-exist.


Self-love is self-care. It's not narcissistic.

Connect with Dr. Edith Eger:











Connect with Doug








Listen to Joseph Bernstein's music: