There has been a theme in my conversations lately about struggle. What has surfaced for many people is the concept of allowing space in their life for struggle. Each one of us is in the midst of some sort of struggle (especially as we face this pandemic together); but it could also be struggle with a relationship, a job or a goal change. All you have to do is ask someone “what is your current struggle?” and the story will flow easily.
The problem isn’t the struggle itself, but that we, as human beings, don’t allow space for that struggle in our lives.
Why is the struggle important?
The core of the struggle is where the fruit is. The dictionary defines a struggle as “a war, fight, conflict, or contest of any kind”. A lot of people get caught up in the struggle itself instead of what the struggle could mean to them. For example, I hear a lot of “I shouldn’t struggle with this”, “I should know better” or “I should be able to figure this out, why is it such a struggle?” This is getting caught up in the struggle itself.
A question to reflect on is “why is this a struggle to begin with?”, “what is the struggle about?”, “is it about change, value differences, a shift in your life?” There is a deeper meaning to the struggle. Perhaps it’s a value difference or a goal shift in your life.
A struggle is simply the feelings, thoughts and experience of moving from one place to another. Imagine that you have your hand on one wall in a room and your goal is to get to other side of the room to touch the opposing wall. At some point there will be a struggle as you keep one hand on one wall while reaching out to touch the opposing wall. You will have to let go at some point….to reach the other side. This is the same struggle in life!
Allowing space for the struggle…
We are in constant movement as we learn, implement and do life differently. We can be so judgmental of ourselves and expect perfection at every turn. However, the gift is in the struggle itself!
If you want to grow and learn to be a good human, you will need to give yourself permission to struggle without judgment. Can you give yourself permission? Can you allow space for the struggle? Can you be gentle with yourself in the struggle?
Oftentimes, when we allow space without judgment something magical happens. We can suddenly see the fruit of the struggle and find a natural way to let go so that we can touch the opposing wall. Change doesn’t occur in the judgement. Change occurs in the compassion and acceptance that the struggle is part of living a full life.
May you embrace your struggle with confidence and pride,