DOES LIFE REALLY HAVE TO BE SO HARD?
Does life really have to be so “hard?” Does it always have to be a struggle? It seems in my own personal and professional life I have become really good at making things hard. I have always been hard on myself. I have always demanded perfectionism of myself and when I don’t live up to my own expectations I beat myself up mentally and yes sometimes even physically. Damn, that’s a hard way to live life, no pun intended.
CHALLENGING VS. HARD
My dear friend and coach recently pointed out to me that I use the word “hard” quite a bit in my vocabulary. That was completely unbeknownst to me. In fact, she was brazen enough to say I got real whiny when I started talking about how hard things are. Believe me, nobody wants to be called whiny. But that is exactly why I have a coach in my life, so I can be shown my blind spots. So I can better understand my own places of resistance and move beyond them. To become the best version of myself.
The new possibility that was proposed to me was to take the word hard out of my vocabulary and replace it with challenging. I have always been good at striving, at trying harder to force things to happen. It’s has been a big part of my life that has made me successful, but the unfortunate piece of this it has come at a cost of peace, joy and happiness. Not an ideal way to live life. It sure takes the fun out of life. What I am being shown is that I don’t have to struggle to serve God.
The new way of thinking is to challenge myself. Of course, there are going to be challenges in life. That is what makes life interesting. If we are never challenged we would be bored out of our mind.
That is the main reason I left the pharmaceutical industry is because I wasn’t being challenged. I was bored. When something is challenging it tests our ability, determination and willingness to push pass the quit. It’s a completely different connotation than “why is everything so hard?”
CHALLENGE OURSELVES THROUGH PHYSICAL ADVENTURE
When we challenge ourselves it becomes about building our character and making ourselves a better person. One way I love to do that personally is through physical fitness and adventure challenges.
Last Saturday I participated in a 110 mile gravel bike race in the Black Hills of South Dakota. I knew it was going to be a challenge, but I had no idea how challenging it was going to be.
We started the race in a torrential downpour with the temperature hovering right around 45 degrees or so. I was completely soaked 5 miles into the race with another 105 miles to go. Frozen toes and frozen fingers were the theme for the day.
It challenged me mentally more than anything. Yes, of course there was physical fatigue, but the whole point was to challenge myself and the weather conditions just added to that. I am proud to say that after about nine hours on the bike I crossed the finish line. I know I am a better person and cyclist because I rose to the challenge.
INVITING A NEW POSSIBILITY
I want to invite you to find ways that you can challenge yourself. Not to make your life harder, but to make your life better and more adventurous. If we aren’t challenging ourselves on a regular basis we become comfortable, complacent and quite honestly bored with our life and the saddest thing of all is we aren’t growing as a person.
What is that challenge for you? It doesn’t have to be physical, but I think as men we are hard-wired to need physical challenges in our lives. That is how God created us. We aren’t meant to sit on the couch and watch TV. We aren’t meant to be spectators in life.
Go out and challenge yourself so you can become a better person. Develop stronger character along the way and inspire others to join in the fun.
My next challenge is the Tour de Steamboat which is a 116 mile road ride in the beautiful country of Steamboat Springs, Colorado. I am going to get the hard out of my vocabulary and embrace the challenge. I am a work in progress in this area of my life. I am going to enjoy the challenges that come my way in life and know that I don’t always have to struggle and make things hard. Maybe sometimes life can just be fun and easy. Isn’t that a novel thought?
BECOME THE ULTIMATE SPIRITUAL WARRIOR
If you are looking for new ways to challenge yourself physically, mentally and spiritually and need some guidance, coaching, wisdom and expertise, I specialize in helping men reclaim their inner warrior to become the ultimate spiritual warrior. Do NOT go on this journey alone. I will be with you every step of the way as you transform your life and become the man you always wanted to be. Please reach out to me at firstname.lastname@example.org and be challenged to reclaim your inner warrior.
Troy Ismir, MS
Spiritual Warrior Coach