The beginning of embracing the struggle is remembering it is not about me. I was listening to an interview yesterday and a gentleman was telling about his experience growing up in an orphanage. His father had tried to commit suicide and his mother was clinically depressed. She left the boy on a doorstep at an orphanage at three years old. It was a heart breaking story and having grown up in a foster home situation I could appreciate a tiny amount of what he was sharing.
The more I pondered his situation the more I began to think outwardly about the problems/challenges and struggles other are having. Without really recognizing it, thinking about others struggles as well as my own helped me understand the universality of struggling. It wasn’t just happening to me, it was not just going on in my world, it was actually apart of “the” world.
My point, looking at our struggles inwardly will not help us take hold of the struggle. I believe inward thinking about our struggles only congers up images of other previous struggles and somehow if we are not careful it all gets twisted in some form of victimization type thinking. The victim mentality is dangerous because it may lean more towards avoiding pain than learning from pain.
The challenge with battling much of this type of thinking is that it happens on a subconscious level that we are not even aware of.
So here are a few more thoughts that I believe will help you think outside of our own challenges to embrace the struggle:
Tell yourself every day,” life is hard but that’s ok”. Tell yourself a life devoid of pain is a life devoid of purpose.
See the world as bigger than you/me and instead of seeing the world revolve around you/me, see yourself as only one piece of the world. Your struggle is not without purpose and often the lessons learned are not just for you. They are lessons to be shared with the world.
Lastly and most importantly try to gain perspective by talking out your struggles with a trusted friend who has a “healthy” perspective of life. If you don’t have one make this a quest. A trusted friend makes the journey of struggling bearable.