In his landmark bestseller, The Road Less Traveled,” written over 25 years ago, author, M. Scott Peck, MD. begins with,
“”Life is difficult. This is a great truth, one of the greatest truths.  It is a great truth because once we truly see this truth, we transcend it. Once we truly know that life is difficult-once we truly understand and accept it-then life is no longer difficult. Because once it is accepted, the fact that life is difficult no longer matters.”

Some might say that by accepting the truth that, “Life is difficult,” we hold a limiting belief that will cause us to experience difficulties in life or prevent us from experiencing life as fully as we can. Life being difficult doesn’t mean it can’t be fabulous.  It doesn’t mean it isn’t fun, exciting, joyful, invigorating, amazing, beautiful, rewarding and abundant. 

On the contrary, this truth, like all truth, sets us free. How can that be? How can knowing that life is difficult set us free?  As the quote states, “once we truly understand and accept it-then life is no longer difficult. Because once it is accepted, the fact that life is difficult no longer matters.”   In other words, we don’t dwell on it. We let it go, we accept it as the way it is. If something no longer matters it won’t get in our way.  We are free to create and embrace life for what it offers. We accept that life is going to have its ups and downs, bumps and bruises, disappointments etc. But it is within the context of life being difficult that we experience its grandeur and sacredness.

Our greatest triumphs, and therefore our greatest joy come as a result of how we respond to life’s unpredictability. Take the time to reflect on what life has offered you that you might label as difficult. Were these not some of the most rewarding, exciting, joyful and enriching life experiences that you have had? And yet, they were while in the midst of life’s most difficult or challenging times.

Now don’t get me wrong. This isn’t to say that we should pray for more difficulty in our lives because of the growth opportunity it presents. I think we can all agree that life offers us plenty of opportunity for doing so without our requesting more.   However, when challenging opportunities (difficulties) are presented, recognize and accept them for what they are, invitations to create and experience life in its richness and fullness.  Accept them as an invitation to create who you truly are and are in the process of becoming in that moment. It is out of the difficulty and unpredictability of life that we become confident and empowered. And once empowered anything is possible. 

When something appears to be an obstacle in your life choose to see it with a new set of eyes. Choose to see it not as something that was placed before you to make your life hard, but to make your life more exciting, more rewarding, more fulfilling. View life as a series of amazing experiences, all of which you have the power and ability to create. See life through eyes of potential, the potential of whatever you want it to be.  See life through the eyes of creation and create whatever you want to experience.

Yes, life is difficult. But it is our perspective about life’s difficulties, and our response to life’s difficulties, that enables us to experience life to the fullest.

Until next time,

Jim

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