Have you ever heard someone say, ‘to live is to suffer’, and just rolled your eyes, thinking what the hell are you talking about?
Well, I for sure have.
I’d hear something like that and tell myself whoever said that still believes this system is the only way to live, and because the system is organized in a way to take more from you than what it gives you, you’re destined to suffer. I thought, well if you create your own business around something you really love to do, then you won’t be experiencing any of those things, life will just happen to you and all you’ll feel is joy and content.
I guess it was my youth speaking out of me.
Up until recently, I’ve been opting for a regular job. I wanted security to give me space to not worry about having a roof over my head so that I could focus on doing the things I love the most in my free time. Since I’m one of those people who tend to lose their energy quite fast, more often than not, I would be too tired after work to create anything. As a result, I’d feel frustrated and start to blame the world for the things I don’t have.
Truth is, I have chosen to do that job and there isn’t anyone to blame.
I decided financial security is important to me and a prerequisite for being able to focus on my creative processes. But, I had to give something in return, and that is a part of my time and energy. Ironically, I was left with very little of those for creating, which was my goal.
What’s been happening for so long is that I wasn’t aware of the choice I made and the whole package that comes with it. Ultimately, it’s me who decided to sacrifice one thing for another.
I wanted everything and I wanted it now. I thought life is unfair for not being the way I wanted it to be.
The system is faulty in many ways and not designed to empower us to discover our potential, but even in some idealistic society, we’d still have to choose one thing at the expense of another.
You can’t have everything. And I don’t mean that in a way ‘you can’t have a career and great family life.’ But some things exclude others because they are the opposites.
Let’s say you want to create a successful career in a creative profession. You can’t do that by living exactly like you did when working in a day-to-day job, you can’t have the same mindset and think poorly of yourself, you can’t be afraid to step out of your apartment to meet people and tell what you do – you’ll have to do uncomfortable things you never did before.
Because you’re trying to create something you never had before.
You’ll have to trade the comfort of the known for the possibilities that are happening only in the unknown.
Embrace the struggle
In a way, it’s way more comforting to think life is unfair, to be mad at the world, and think you deserve everything right here and now. Because then you can just continue with the way you did up until this point and not make any changes.
But realizing there is something so valuable that’s been hiding in the struggle is far better.
So, I decided to embrace it.
Now I see it as a gift – a seed for growth, knowledge, and wisdom.
A lesson that will equip me with what I need to become a better version of myself.
Are you clear about your priorities?
We’re making sacrifices all the time, in every moment of our lives. We sacrifice less important things over our priorities.
It’s only a matter of what’s your priority and what you need to lose along the way to make space for the more important stuff.
The question is, are you clear about what your priorities are? Did you choose them yourself, or did you take somebody else’s as your own?
With everything you gain, you also lose something along the way.
You can decide your priorities are comfort, predictability, and security that 9-5 job provides, but you risk not living up to your potential and exploring the calling of your soul.
You choose to build your own business, express yourself creatively, and attract unlimited possibilities, but you commit to continuously step into the unknown and uncomfortable.
It’s just about what’s more important to you and what you’re willing to sacrifice.
If the struggle is an essential part of our existence, and there is no way around it, why not choose for yourself a set that will be worth dealing with? Something unique to you, your interests and needs, that will over time lead you to a life you are excited about and proud of?
There is no life without challenges, there is no growth without change
We love to control and that’s why we resist challenges and change that often comes with it. They are not what we wanted to deal with. We had a certain expectation, but instead, we got this thing that makes our body scream in frustration.
But what would we ever learn if everything was just easily given to us?
What would we appreciate if we didn’t have to put in some work to get what we wanted?
Instead of resisting challenges, we can accept that there is no life without them.
Just think about your life, did you ever get anything you really cared about without having to put in a great deal of effort? Or if you did, do you actually appreciate it, daily?
There is no limit to our growth
There is no magical line you’ll cross after which you’ll feel you’ve had your part of a struggle and you can finally relax, sit back, and never have to do go through any of those hard things again. There will always be the next level you have to complete.
Because there is no limit to our growth. When you reach your goal, you create the next one. When you solve one problem, another one gets created.
And we are here to grow, to expand, to get to know ourselves and this magical life a little bit better.
Your suffering is where your greatness lies
I once heard someone say how your suffering is where your greatness lies.
It makes sense. If you’re someone who struggled for years to create your business, you’ll become the expert in teaching others how to create a business from the scratch. If you struggled your whole life with low self-confidence, you’re the best person to help others with the same issue.
Our struggle is our strength. The challenges we are facing in life are gifts. They are our building blocks for whatever it is we are trying to create (or will eventually realize we want to create). Anybody who’s an expert in anything has become one by being bad at doing that same thing for years and years.
Our challenges are our tickets to success. They are our learning material. It’s life’s way of preparing us for what we’re here for.
That’s why I decided to practice being grateful for all the challenges life’s throwing at me. Because they are shaping me into the person I am and will become. They will give me the strength and equip me with the knowledge I can then share with others.
Thank you, Life, for sending all those shitty situations my way.
Thank you for giving me opportunities to learn and grow.
Thank you for seeing my potential and then offering me ways to explore it and make the best out of it.
I was blind to your generosity.
But I’m learning to let go of control.