Embracing all of life

We have a strong tendency as humans to try and cling to the things and experiences we love and run from the painful experiences – or at least attempt to get away from the tough stuff as quickly as possible. I know it may seem like I am stating the obvious, a real no-brainer, right? Why would we want to linger in the painful stuff, or have it go on any longer than necessary?

What I would suggest for your consideration, is that the tough painful stuff is really the treasure trove of our lives. When the sh#t hits the fan and the bottom drops out, we are left naked and exposed. All our coping mechanisms, work-arounds and usual approaches typically come up short during these times in our lives. We are face to face with our deepest fears and vulnerabilities with nowhere to run and nowhere to hide. This is a seminal moment if we are willing to claim the gifts it brings. If we stay present and don’t try and check out or soften the blow, we can surrender to being transformed by the pain.

It is times like this when we realize our strength and discover inner untapped resources, we never knew we had. People in our lives might commend us for being brave, courageous or fearless when they see the way we navigate our particular challenge. But we often don’t see it that way at the time. We simply rise to the occasion and do what needs to be done. It is often only in retrospect when we can objectively look back from the safe, quiet space of calm peaceful times where we can see how we kicked ass and actually surprised ourselves.

Inside each and every one of us lies the hero of our own story. Our inner hero awakens to fulfill the need and save the day whenever called upon by the deep challenges and heartbreaks of life. In the aftermath, when we pick up the pieces and begin again, we do so with a new fresh acquisition of skills and assets we didn’t know we had. We essentially uplevel our ability to handle life’s bumps, curves and collisions.

All of this results in more freedom and ability to successfully navigate our daily lives. We realize that each storm we’ve weathered has resulted in us being able to handle life with greater ease and flow. It becomes a new way to journey through the dark night of the soul while holding the promise of knowing that grace will light our way. This trust, faith and surrender will reveal to us the gifts and strengths we need, not only to navigate the circumstance, but to inhabit the truth of who we are, what we are called to be and what we are asked to share with the world.