Many people did not have an easy home life. Their parents may have been very difficult to please. They may have had to compete with brothers or sisters and struggled desperately to be their siblings' equal in areas that did not utilize their greatest talents. Their parents may have struggled to make ends meet financially. They got the message that life is a struggle.
Many people who have experienced life as a struggle truly believe that this is the way it's meant to be. Even the former prime minister of Australia, Malcolm Fraser, shared this belief. Some years ago, he declared to the Australian nation that "Life wasn't meant to be easy!" Here are some more examples:
Martin lost his father at an early age. His mother was forced to work very hard to support her three children and was rarely at home. From that time on, Martin believed that life was a struggle. He worked extremely hard, eventually becoming a real estate developer. His days were fraught with worry and indecisiveness. His nights were often sleepless. Even when he became highly successful, he couldn't enjoy his money. He felt depressed and purposeless. His life continues to be a struggle.
Helen finds it very difficult to keep her body in shape. Even though she feels guilty when she binges on large quantities of junk food, she can't stop herself. She knows she should exercise, but keeps putting it off. The battle of the bulge feels like an endless struggle that is mostly out of her control.
Many people create struggle by refusing to accept "what is" in the present moment. The intensity of your struggle is directly related to your degree of resistance. The present moment is all there is, all you have, and all you will ever have, so it is senseless to resist it. By resisting the eternal present, you are resisting life itself. By disiden-tifying with your resistance and observing it, you discover your innermost power. You access the full might of your own conscious presence. Instead of judging and resisting the present moment, just allow it to be. Accept it as if it were your own choice. This will give you an experience of freedom from external circumstances, and authentic inner peace. Once you accept the present moment and work with it rather than against it, life starts working for you rather than against you. You can resolve unacceptable external situations by accepting them completely, optimizing them, or removing yourself from their influence. Just take the most discerning actions and observe what happens. If necessary, you can call upon the past and future to optimize the present moment.
Are you creating internal battles because you believe in hardship and struggle? You can weaken your belief in struggle by questioning your reasons for accepting it. Be sure to answer the Optimal question What is the easiest path to ensure my success in life? Take some time to acknowledge the ease with which you accomplish daily activities such as getting dressed, preparing breakfast, and reading the newspaper. Choose goals that are clearly attainable, then take the easiest path toward them by answering Optimal questions like:
• What's the easiest way to reach this goal?
• What's the easiest action I can take?
• What's the path of least resistance?
Now, in your notebook, make a list of all the things you have accomplished with ease, and review it every day.
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