It’s inevitable; life is going to throw challenges at you.
You can run and hide, but you can’t escape the fact that things will get difficult sometimes – it’s part of being human.
How you respond however, is totally up to you - it’s the one thing you always have control over.
There’s significant research that suggests that it’s not stress that eventually kills you, it’s your attitude towards the stress.
If you view a challenge as ‘life simply being unfair’, that you’re somehow a hopeless victim, you have no influence or control over your circumstance, then that will begin to chip away at your soul.
It will lead you down a path of bitterness, resentment and despair
Hopeless eventually sets in, making your climb back all that more difficult.
If however, you accept the challenge,
You decide to rise above it, to adapt, to see it as an opportunity to learn and grow – then, if anything, the opposite becomes true.
You strengthen your resolve, you build your character –
You elevate yourself to new heights
Accessing parts of yourself that would otherwise have gone unrealised.
There’s a mental aspect to it, a strength of will, discipline and courage.
This can be developed, but only if you’re willing to accept the challenge.
And although the struggle is real, so is the pay off.
You learn something about yourself in those moments
And you soon begin to realise, that to truly transcend your condition and move into everything your humanity demands of you
Everything that you’re truly capable of;
The challenge is not only helpful; it’s necessary; it’s an essential piece of the puzzle –
Because it’s in the suffering when you ask yourself the difficult questions,
When you are asked to dig deeper and reach for something beyond.
And this is ultimately how and when you grow.
So don’t let the struggle get you down, instead, let it be the springboard to higher heights.
“Many men, after asking God to give them opportunities to practice their virtues, grumble when they encounter difficulties…” (St Pasios of Athos)