Achieve a level of insight which enables you to gladly welcome and “sustain pain” at an entirely different level. Pain has had its part to play in y/our greatest triumphs, we’re going to explore this. Additionally, we’ll be identifying the unacknowledged weaknesses of mind that stands in your way with the view of making you mentally tougher by the end of this article.
For example, we’ll present you with an insight on how failing to answer this often unconscious question in the affirmative, “am I enough” lies at the heart of your occasional need for validation, especially from those people you don’t even like, trust or respect.
You’ll also come to see how relying on other people, places and things for self validation induces unnecessary pain and fear in both you and them. Recognising that these imposters to your progress are best dealt with by acknowledging that the fear of not being or having enough has been holding you back more than you care to admit.
On the subject of endurance, Friedrich Nietzsche had this to say…
“To those human beings who are of any concern to me I wish suffering, desolation, sickness, ill-treatment, indignities — I wish that they should not remain unfamiliar with profound self-contempt, the torture of self-mistrust, the wretchedness of the vanquished: I have no pity for them, because I wish them the only thing that can prove today whether one is worth anything or not — that one endures.” Pretty harsh or loving, let’s explore together…
If you were told at the start of your life that:
You’re going to suffer whichever course of action you choose to pursue. Your values will be contested and used against you, you will feel torn to shreds by circumstances outside your control. You’ll be forced to revisit what you once believed to be true and you may be forced to reconstruct your cherished beliefs, attitudes and behaviours…
Despite your best efforts to adapt, you’ll find your positively developed self leads to problems you don’t deserve/ unanticipated shocks and challenges, and you’ll be horrified on more than one occasion by how you react to challenges. You’ll suffer the consequences of your actions at the exact time you don’t have the energy to fight the consequences. Sacrificing time with the people you love to further refine or even rebuild yourself again and again. Would you have wanted to know?
You recognise the story, let’s recognise what you’ve learnt:
- If you’re going to suffer, you might as well get a reward for your suffering. Winners/ those who endure advising: “Choose your pain” – rationalising that it’s better to suffer as a result of going after something you choose than being subject to the suffering that “life” or someone else chooses for you.
- If your core values aren’t being tried and tested you’ll more likely fail to stand your ground when under attack or intense pressure – accept regular pressure as the gift and the reminder it is to, stand firm and “be the cliff on which the greatest of waves break”.
- Refining your beliefs requires refining behaviour, this is the cognitive equivalent of doing strength training at the gym – you might not necessarily enjoy the exercise of refining your behaviour, but you’ll enjoy the accompanying mental, physical and emotional wellbeing.
- Finding yourself forced to reflect, review and redefine your character will not be accidental, becoming a self made man is a journey not a destination. Accepting this and finding you’re a Leader of yourself and an example of strength to those who follow.
Without the suffering, would you have been able to understand and utilise the insight we’ve just shared above?
- Great, so we’ve established that both suffering and resistance is necessary for your growth… Let’s explore the beauty of something you avoid considering…
“We suffer from an existential fear, people we love are going to die and so are we.”
- Confronting your own mortality regularly will bring light and life to your time. Installing gratitude for what you have, giving you the ability to endure, turning hardship into character, weakness into strength, failure into growth.
- Understanding that we only have a moment makes owning the moment and yourself in the toughest of times much easier because “this moment, my time, my life will pass”.
- Accepting that those you love may die before you will lead you to love them more in life than you presently do, protecting you against regret.
- If you’ve lost someone you care for, this makes sense… At some point today, take a moment to tell someone you love why you love them. Do the same for someone you care for… How are you feeling at the thought of sharing your moment? 🙂
- A goal represents the pain you’re willing to sustain, move towards and doggedly pursue – the human being you become will be a result of what and how you do.
- Find your “how” by accepting the uncomfortable now, (Jim Wenzel)
Practical & Example Application:
Practically speaking, if you’re feeling fear or pain, the first step is to acknowledge the feeling of fear for example.
So when you’re feeling scared, what happens outside the thoughts of your mind?
Virtually nothing happens outside the thoughts of your mind for 99% of the time. So can you conclude that acting as though something which is true 1% of the time for 99j% of the time is preventing you from dealing with the present and poisoning your perception?
Here’s what worked/ works for me:
1. “I’m feeling fear” triggers an executive response: “noting/ acknowledging an experience of fear – Observing: breathing in the upper respiratory tract, undue physiological tension such as tension in hands and forehead, poor posture…
Setting up the following communication:
2. Providing a caring inner command, coming back to the present, breathing deep into the abdomen, adjusting posture, relaxing shoulders, observing what’s actually there.
3. What’s actually there? When you can answer with a smile, “presence”, you’re able to manage arising fear because it’s presence of mind which sees oneself and others as they are – as opposed to how you’re feeling, this is a great source of relaxation, (if you choose to make it so).
4. Now you’ve dealt with one situationally specific fear, repeat this process with the 100 other situational fears that arise. Noting that not one of the 101 fears which human beings are run by can ruin your life, only the 102nd fear can ruin your life, “fearing that there’s something wrong with you when feeling fear”.
Reliable Rules & Practical Principles:
- No one is going to give you the validation you need, only you can do that.
- Acknowledging via your behaviour that only you can validate yourself is proof that you’ve built the foundation required to master yourself and your life today.
- You’re not quite the version of yourself that you imagine you presently are or should be.
- The authentic version of you arises as a result of becoming authentically interested in working with what or who is present – this often means you’ll have to allow yourself to become/ feel vulnerable.
- The authenticity you’re looking for in others must first be found within yourself. Finding authenticity due to the realisation that you are not your vulnerability is a necessary step.
- Allowing yourself to experience vulnerability enables you to take the action steps necessary to make the strength gains you need but don’t necessarily want to earn.
- Having taken this journey back to yourself, you’ll be able to give to and therefore receive from others what you’ve always required within yourself, “love and kindness”.
- It’s at this point that you realise that the impossible was the necessary journey to the i’mpossible.
- You achieved your end as a result of making stumbling blocks into stepping stones and remembering that you couldn’t have made this journey on your own, you realise it’s time to give back what was so freely given – leaving your legacy.
If you like this article then your friends, colleagues and contacts will likely like, share and comment too, that’s good for them, me and you.
Dedicated to Jim Wenzel, Steve King, Jessica Shelley and all those who have helped me find the way, or stood in the way.