Wait, what? I should build a POSITIVE relationship with suffering?? Yes!
I know for a lot of people that doesn't make a lot of sense. Who wants to embrace suffering in their life? But, if you think about it. Life is suffering. It really depends on how you view the word "suffering" and the perception you have of what it means. Suffering is part of everything you do. When you work hard at the gym and break down your muscles to exhaustion, you are suffering. When you push yourself to your limits of ability or mental capacity, you are engaging in a form of suffering.
And, of course, there is the type of suffering that brings real and true pain, such as an illness or death of a loved one that cannot be diminished.
We go through life with periods of suffering interrupted by great joy and success. Usually, the joy and success is a lot shorter than the suffering and struggle we go through - but ask yourself - Is it worth it to go through the struggles, trials, suffering, and tribulation to reach those periods of joy and success? I believe it is. I believe that our ability to grow and persevere comes from the suffering we have to go through and like anything, the more experience you have with it, the more prepared you are to handle the inevitable bouts of suffering that come into your life.
A great example of this in my life was the news years ago that my wife and I could not have children naturally. We are 10% of what doctors call unexplained. Everything is healthy for us, but it just doesn't happen. We suffered through this news only to grow as a couple and to find our daughter. We may never have been the family we are without going through this multi-year struggle - and I could not imagine life any other way. It was the suffering that lead us to a much more amazing life with an amazing kiddo that we love more than life itself.
So embrace suffering, because every time you overcome, you get stronger and it gets easier to overcome the next round and so on. And in-between, you get to enjoy the fruits of your suffering - the amazing joy and success that life unfolds.
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