Life is hard work, seriously hard work. Buddha himself is quoted saying something to the effect that what makes us human is that we all struggle.
I remember hearing this for the first time and feeling angry, like I'd just been sold a false bill of goods. That I driven off the lot in a powder blue Pinto, having been told it was the next cool thing.
As I continually work on my own big bold self, I realize the truth in the wisdom of idea that yes, indeed everyone struggles. That although we look completely different on the outside that deep down the essence of each of us is identical. That your obstacles comes wrapped in gilded paper and mine newsprint doesn't change the gift inside. That we all are given struggle, pain, and adversity.
I read this quote by the masterful Cheryl Strayed from her book Wild "How wild it was, to let it be."
I've read the book and absolutely loved it, I devoured it like a box of dark chocolate sea salt caramels, quickly knowing I should slow down and make it last but unable to stop myself. This quote when read independently of it's peers jumped out at shouted to like a Baptist preacher; Amen!
To me it is the idea that sometimes what is more risky that "doing the work" is "not doing the work."
Now before you stop reading, hear me out.
For me personally one of my biggest transformations happened when I began to do less. To put less importance on the external perception of the work I was doing. I stopped trying so hard to be the top achiever in the Microsoft stack rank review model and just let it be.
In that wildness of what amounts to a huge mental shift, things became easy. In letting it be, a better version of myself emerged. Not from the outside doing and showing my work. But from the inside out. (Interestingly I had some of the "highest ranking" reviews in these wild years.)
If to be human is to struggle and if our life's work is to learn to handle (accept or overcome) our own tale of woe, how wild would it be to just surrender? To not rage against the machine?
What would happen if you didn't try so hard. What if you did less work today? Opted out? Said no?
I know this is hard. The clients I work with every day struggle when I ask them these questions. When I ask them to be wild and to let it be.
When I think of you modern day warriors going off to do battle, up the elevator to the top floors of glass towers, or in your cars driving off fueled by coffee and Paleo bars to slay your dragons. My wish for you is to lay down your sword, to let it be. To be wild just for a moment.
Make a moment, make a day, make a life.