Know why taking the hard road now, facing those problems, fears, and emotions, will allow us to live a life of joy and fulfillment in the future.
How true is this statement in life. This quote was taken from a book that I just finished reading, titled Rich Dad, Poor Dad. The fundamental idea of this book is that increased financial intelligence can be used to solve many of life’s common problems. Two years ago, about this time of year, I was standing in front of a full length mirror looking at the face I saw staring back at me, and the body that up to that point, had caused me so much grief. I had such a love-hate relationship with my body, such a turbulent past. I looked deep into my own eyes, and saw a sad, depressed, exhausted, burnt out girl, who knew she needed to make some big changes. I was 25 pounds overweight, and I knew that although the extra weight was what was showing up on the outside, the real issues lay within. That was the day I chose to begin my journey toward true wellness. Before then I was traveling along a path, but I was zigzagging all over the place. I had no control over my life, I just went with what was easiest at the time, whatever offered the least amount of pain. I wanted my physical appearance to change, but I was so focused on factors outside of me, looking for the quick fix, miracle pill, the fast-track weight-loss program...whatever seemed like it was going to give me results fast, that I totally overlooked the real cause of my weight gain. Yet, the longer that I traveled the easy path, the more I realized I was headed in the wrong direction. That easy path was the avoidance path, steering me clear of my problems...the real issues. I was attempting to skirt around them by way of procrastination, ignoring them, and busying myself with other “things,” in order to deaden myself to the pain. My emotional suffering was the real problem. Baggage that I had been holding onto for a long, long time. After years of traveling down that easy path, it was becoming clear that I needed to face this baggage head on rather than running from it. In order to achieve complete physical health, I needed to first work on my mental health. You see, what I was occupying my time with, in order to distract myself from my true issues, ended up causing more pain and suffering than the problems I was trying to avoid. I built layer upon layer of so-called protection between me and the feelings that hurt, yet in this avoidance, I was holding myself apart from the growth that would have helped me the most. It is ironic how we can all agree that students in school learn best by doing homework, tackling problems and finding solutions, but in real life, solving our problems is often the last thing we want to do. Because problems hurt. They make us vulnerable. Facing problems or baggage requires us to face some emotions that are not always fun to face in order to move through, and heal the pain. Without this healing, our spirit, our true self, cannot grow to its fullest potential. Instead we shrivel and slowly begin to die inside. So, what we perceive as the easy road at first, truly does become the hard road in the long run. Taking the easy road now, only causes more pain and suffering in the future. And, by the same token, taking the hard road now, facing those problems, fears, and emotions, will allow us to live a life of joy and fulfillment in the future. As you develop your New Years Resolution, which I know you are at least thinking about, remember this idea of looking within, facing the hard stuff, so that your future can be as big and as bright as it was meant to be. Today is the day that you look in the mirror and face your baggage. Look it straight in the eye and decide that you are better than your problems. Your problems are what give you your courage and growth, far more than any easy path. Today is the day for a new perspective and the first step is deciding to make that change.