You can always look for meaning in suffering

It’s great when everything in life is going along just swimmingly.

When we’re healthy.

When we’re crushing it on the job.

When our relationships are strong.

Yet, it’s not often that life is without its problems.

We all, inevitably, encounter adversity.

We get sick or injured.

We run into obstacles with our careers.

We see relationships end.

Our circumstances rarely last long.

There are good times.

There are bad times.

So many of us expect good times.

We take them for granted.

We see them as what should be the norm.

Then, when bad times hit, we’re caught off guard.

We’re disappointed.

We might feel as though we’re being wronged by the universe.

Unfairly subjected to ill circumstances.

Life’s suffering, however, is not useless.

To the contrary, it has much worth.

Pain can help you appreciate pleasure.

Bad days can show you the value of good days.

Loss can help you cherish what you have.

You’ll feel pain.

You’ll have bad days.

You’ll experience loss.

How can you grow through such experiences?

What can you learn from them?

About the world?

About yourself?

You can’t always avoid suffering.

You can always look for meaning in suffering.

In what ways is your life not going how you’d like?

In what ways are you suffering?

In what ways might you learn or grow from that suffering?

This isn’t to say that any of us should turn a blind eye to our problems.

Or that we might act as if everything’s peachy when it isn’t.

It’s okay to acknowledge that life gets hard.

The point isn’t to ignore difficulty.

The point is to use that difficulty.

In any way we can.

To move toward our best life.

That life will not be free of suffering.

It’s on us to make the most of that suffering.

You’ve got this.

Originally published at on December 3, 2020.

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