Have you ever found yourself reflecting on life? On why we have times when we struggle? On where we get our values, our hopes, our expectations from?
Perhaps you’ve had times when you’ve thought life wasn’t fair, wasn’t easy or just plain sucked! And let’s face it, when pressures arrive – especially financial and relational tensions – it can be easy to slide into a kind-of “woe-is-me” mindset.
Comparing ourselves with others can lead us into dangerous territory. There are always others who seem to have it all together and life just seems easy. Or at least that can be what it looks like as an outside observer viewing the external appearance.
You know what it’s like…the car (hey, it’s not just a bloke thing!), the clothes, the companion, the kids, the house, the holidays people take….and so the list can go on.
Over coming weeks I’m going to get a little personal and divulge a 3-part blog sharing words I penned (with some editing discretion) back in April this year when I was experiencing a time when life was tough, well at least parts of it were.
Holding things in tension, trying to keep a balanced perspective, and maintaining at least a semi-positive outlook on life without shying away from the reality of challenges – circumstantial or relational – can be critical for one’s sanity and overall well-being. I’m a firm believer that avoiding self-reflection limits our capacity to learn, to grow and ultimately to expand our sense of compassion and concern for others.
Staying in a state of non-reflection limits our ability to truly engage life. Why? Unless we seek to understand ourselves, our values and our priorities then we run the risk of losing sight of who we are – and that includes the uncomfortable, the confronting, the challenging as well as our hopes, joys and dreams. As Brene Brown puts it: “We cannot selectively numb emotions, when we numb the painful emotions, we also numb the positive emotions.” Being vulnerable and honest with ourselves opens us up to the possibility of truly embracing life in all it’s fullness.