That’s what my friend told me earlier today after I shared the issues and struggles I’ve been facing with my RYKO book, website, products, technology, the other books I’m working on, and so on.
Whew. It has been a journey, that is for sure.
I unloaded on my friend for a good ten minutes about how I feel so much pressure to get everything ready by August 3rd and all the issues that keep popping up every day. I don’t know if I’m going to make it in time. I shared how I’m burning the midnight oil every night and wondered why nearly everything has been such a struggle while starting Whisker Life.
My friend sat in silence as he absorbed everything I said to him. When I was finished, he allowed another few silent moments to pass and then said, “Be grateful for the struggle.”
Knowing that there were several nuggets of wisdom baked into those five simple words, I left my friend’s house and decided to take a much needed break. I headed down to the lake to relax for a few moments and think about what my friend said.
In fact, it’s where I’m writing this from right now and it’s the same exact spot where I sat down when I wrote the first words for my book, RYKO a couple months ago.
Taking a giant step back, I have really come a long way in the past couple of months. Although most of the lessons I’ve been learning have been learned the hard way, I am proud of where I am today.
And I can tell you if it wasn’t for having such a crystal clear vision of my dreams, goals, mission, and purpose of Whisker Life, I would not have overcome many of the challenges and struggles that I have faced.
Each and every time I face a challenge (which is honestly multiple times a day), I open up my journal and remind myself of my purpose that I’ve now written down hundreds of times.
Come to think of it. . .
- My purpose is bigger than any challenge I could ever face.
- My dreams are larger than any obstacle that could ever get in my way.
- My goals are more important than any distraction that pulls my attention.
- My mission is far greater than any voices of self-doubt that sometimes whisper in my mind.
So really, it’s the struggle that forces me to keep reminding myself why I’m on this journey. And then that motivates me to take more action and continue moving forward.
I can’t help but wonder. . .
What if the struggles are there to remind us of our purpose?
What if the challenges we face daily are simply nudges and tests to ensure we stay the path?
What if all the problems I keep facing with self-publishing my first book is forcing me to learn all that I need to know so that publishing my other books down the road will be a breeze? (Paws crossed.)
I think I’m starting to understand what my friend meant by, “Be grateful for the struggle”.
It reminds me of when I set out for a journey in the forest and I choose to carve my own path, rather than take a well-traveled trail. I claw my way through thick brush, over boulders, through streams, and make my own trail. It is most often a big struggle.
But almost every time without fail, I end up in a wonderful place after the struggle. It may be a beautiful field, a mountain top with an amazing view, or some other place that makes my heart smile and made the journey so worth it.
Funny thing is, I hardly remember the struggles, but I do remember all of the beautiful places my journeys led me to.
So maybe the struggle is not only a needed part of the journey, maybe the struggle is the most important part of the journey?
If we can learn to be grateful for our struggles and use them as reminders of our purpose and dreams, then it would make the journey as a whole much more enjoyable. Don’t you think?
Being grateful may even make those frustrating moments a little (or a lot) less frustrating.
Hmmm. . .
I think I do understand what my friend was trying to tell me now. And at this very moment, having this realization feels like a giant weight has just been lifted off of my shoulders.
There is a huge smile on my face as I type this and my heart is bursting with happiness. I finally get it!
What about you?
- Is your purpose bigger than any challenge you could ever face?
- Are your dreams larger than any obstacle that could ever get in your way?
- Are your goals more important than any distraction that pulls your attention?
- Is your mission far greater than any voices of self-doubt that sometimes whisper in your mind?
- What if you started to take a few minutes a day (via catnapping or simple alone time) and worked on being grateful for all of your past, current, and future struggles?
- And most importantly, what if you became truly grateful for the struggles and released any and all power that they have on you?
How do you think that would make you feel? Probably a little lighter, right?
Without giving any power to the struggles, do you think you would feel a little more motivated to keep running towards your dreams and goals?
What if that simple shift in thinking and being ignites the spark of purpose that leads to the fire of your true calling?
Something to think about.
So here is the big question. . .
Are there any struggles that you’re facing right now that you could practice being truly grateful for and see how you feel after?
I think my friend is onto something.
I need to run to use the litter box.
P.S. I just want to say that I am so grateful for YOU. I have true heart-felt gratitude for everyone who has joined me so early on my journey and followed Whisker Life on Facebook. Thank you!