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Why Struggle is Good For You

Does life seem like an uphill battle? Maybe it’s time for a change.

Most people would welcome an easy life or at least one without struggle. They have wishes, visions, and plans and want to enjoy a stress-free life. They want to live, and there’s nothing wrong with that. 

But it’s possible to become so obsessed with the idea of a struggle-free existence that everything that gets in the way is bothersome. This can result in a life that is settled for, rather than truly lived to the fullest. It might not be turbulent, but opportunities could be missed. 

Struggle in itself, taking out the emotional attachment, is nothing bad. It wakes you up, gives you a shake, and shows you that something is amiss or needs change. Sure, the feeling isn’t a happy one. It can be unpleasant and when you’re in the middle of tough times, you don’t want to hear the old saying of when one door closes, another one opens. You’re sick and tired of being given advice. You just want the struggle to go away so you can get on with your regular life again. 

However, to struggle is okay. Difficult times are there to highlight something you’d miss because you’re so busy living your everyday life. The struggle is a tool that points you in a particular direction and gives you the chance to have a closer look.  As said, it’s not going to be pleasant, but you can survive a struggle and learn from it. Just be gentle with yourself and don’t think about who to blame. You’re a capable, unique and wonderful human being, and you can overcome struggle and make the most out of life.

Why Struggle is Good For You

How to Deal With The Tough Times

Tips to help you through to the other side…

1.Sort it out

Take a moment to try and put all the facts together. How big is the struggle here? What happened and what are the possible outcomes. Even if they seem impossible, what could happen other than what you current see? Sometimes a detail can throw you into emotional chaos and escaping the chaos starts with becoming aware and sorting it out as much as possible. 

2. Focus

It all starts with you. To become more aware of what’s going on, start to see details in your life clearly and properly. Focus on how a specific smile, word or situation made you feel. What is troubling you now and how does that make you feel?

3. Set boundaries

Sometimes you take responsibility for chaos that isn’t fully yours because you’re emotionally attached to someone or something. Setting imaginary boundaries is a good way to deal with this. Picture the struggle in your  mind and think about whether the chaos is actually related to your life. Henry Cloud has a great book on this called Boundaries, along with many others that address boundaries in marriage, dating, and kids. 

4. Let go

Difficult times may show you that a change in direction is needed to achieve what you really want. Wherever you change direction or behavior, there is something you leave behind. It may be as small as not having that extra coffee every day because you wish to change your diet to improve your health. Everything that cannot continue any more has the potential to cause you to experience loss. Accept the fact that you will sometimes need to let go.

5. Be gentle

Regardless of how difficult and hard a struggle is, it’s not determined by its size. One detail can make a situation hurt more than a big change event. If something makes you struggle, even if the whole world thinks it’s not really that big of a deal, be aware that it’s your life and your strife. No matter how big or small, it makes you feel uncomfortable and shakes your foundation. You’re the one who needs to deal with it, so make a decision-you can blame yourself for being weak or you can be gentle with yourself and get through it with open eyes and awareness. You know what’s best for you. 

6.Seek companionship

Whenever possible, find people you can connect to and trust. Tell them how you would like to be approached should a difficult situation arise or when sharing your momentary sorrows. The usual advice and ‘everything is going to be ok’ comments are not the sort of help you need. You know you’re able to overcome hard patches, even if it doesn’t feel like it at the time. But remember, you have done it before. What you need is someone who’ll respect your ability to be capable. You need an ear that listens, eyes that see your uniqueness and maybe arms to hold and comfort you for awhile. 

7. Find a safe haven

As much as awareness and observation is important, when the struggle is too much to take, find a safe haven. Give all the thinking, writing down and checking a break, and find the places and activities that help you restore energy. Again, it doesn’t matter what it is, as long as it works for you. Perhaps you’d enjoy a walk, listening to your favorite music playlist, working out at the gym, mediating-do what makes you feel good. 

8. Express yourself 

Often, a struggle in your life can highlight something that needs your attention. What makes it difficult or even overwhelming is your emotional entanglement with the issue. Expressing your feelings is a powerful tool that will help you to see clearer and enable you to eject the struggle out of your system. There are lots of possibilities in how you might choose to convey your emotions, such as drawing, writing, singing or simply talking. You’ll soon discover what works best for you.  

*Disclaimer: In the name of full transparency, please be aware that this blog post contains affiliate links and any purchases made through such links will result in a small commission for me (at no extra cost for you).

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