Imagine you go to the gym and hire a trainer and his plan is for you to never struggle even the slightest bit in any exercise. How fast would you reach your goals? Imagine that you come upon a friend when you are out shopping and they tell you that they have worked out every single day for several years. They also tell you that five years ago they couldn’t lift three pounds and now they can. Is that progress?

Most of us have this terrible equation embedded in our thoughts. That equation is struggle, struggle, reward and finish struggling. It may sound good as a fantasy but it isn’t life. The correct equation is struggle, grow, struggle, grow. That’s life!

You struggle with a cold as a child and your immune system grows strong enough to defeat a more serious one years later. You struggle through a bad relationship so that you can grow in wisdom. You struggle with finances so that you can grow in your vision of the worth of things. You struggle with school so that you can grow your earnings.

Seeing someone moaning and crying at the gym because they have to lift a weight would lead you to believe they weren’t serious about growth. On the other hand, watching someone struggle and then smile at their reflection in the mirror tells you that they are pleased with their results of their struggle.

Don’t moan about your struggles. Gratitude isn’t just for the bright, shiny things in your life. Gratitude is also for the struggles that make you a better, stronger person. Embrace your struggles. Give thanks for your struggles. Reap the wisdom and strength that you know is coming from your struggles. They are not knocking you down. They are building you up.

(c)2014 All Rights Reserved, Patrick McBride

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