Have you picked the right struggles?
Yeah, you get to choose your struggles. For example, say you’re broke and can’t pay your bills. You’re wracking up debt and there’s no change in sight. What’s your struggle?
- To pay the rent and feed the kids?
- To get the creditors off your back?
- To find something to numb you out so you can forget about money?
- To change your lifestyle and create a budget?
- To rail against your boss, job, the economy, life?
- To take steps towards that new career you’ve been thinking about?
You’ve got a lot of options! You can have as many or as few struggles as you want! Each one you pick has its own meaning that will affect your life and your attitude towards your life.
Say you are struggling to pay rent, feed the kids, and avoid the creditors, without making changes to your lifestyle and spending. You’re likely to have a meaning along the lines of, “I can never get ahead, life is stacked against me, I can never make ends meet.” That’s a pretty bleak prospect that makes it mighty hard to see and consider new options. Dealing with that meaning and those struggles day in and out could lead a person to (drink, smoke, watch too much tv, use drugs, eat too much, take unnecessary risks, etc).
An alternative example might be to talk to your boss about getting the education required to move up to a higher position, securing a loan to get that education while learning some responsibilities on the job, and creating a budget so you don’t spend any more money than necessary. The meaning made by this approach might be something like, “This is a really tough situation I’m in, but I have a plan and I’m taking it step by step. This isn’t going to last forever. Soon I’ll have a better paying job and more control over my spending habits. Things are getting better and they are going to keep getting better.” This sort of meaning helps you get up in the morning and do the work required to create the new life you’ve envisioned for yourself.
There are so many difficult struggles in life. They can feel overwhelming and impossible to change. But we can change the frame from which we view them — or get help to do so if we’re stuck.
Are you cool with your current struggles? Or would you like to pick some new ones?
I believe in and am watchful in order to notice the possibilities of Life.
My experiences and struggles help me define what is truly valuable in life.
I love the challenge, and am creating a better life for myself every day.