Philosophy Friday: Accept This
And Life Will Be Easy
Early wake-ups are tough—you know, being so tired it actually hurts. In your work too, some parts are dull, unpleasant routine. Or you have an open-ended project where you could proceed in a million ways, yet you’re not sure on your next move. The initial excitement about the project is long gone. It’s become hard making progress.
You don’t catch a break in other aspects of life either: Other people are in your way. They have their own agenda. Money is tight and hard to come by, and things seem to cost too much.
Life is difficult and painful. There are always more problems to solve and obstacles to overcome. You’ve fixed a problem, and another one is taking its place.
Problems never go away. In that respect, we’re all in the same boat. Even billionaire investor Warren Buffett has money problems—they’re just different from yours and mine.
But help is at hand. There is a way of making your life easier. And it will appear counter-intuitive when you first read it. OK, here it is:
As soon as you accept life as difficult, it becomes easier.
Hoping for the easy, carefree path does not work. We cannot hide from obstacles or ignore problems. They’ll only grow bigger, yet the payoff from resolving them stays the same.
The only life of ease comes from looking the hard work we must do squarely in the eye. Pushing into the pain makes you stronger. You’ll be able to handle even more difficult situations. Harness the satisfaction and growth that come with taking on and knocking off problems. Get closer to your goals.
Realise life is hard. Don’t wish for it to be different. Accept it. And it will be easier.
“So you were born to feel ‘nice’? Instead of doing things and experiencing them? Don’t you see the plants, the birds, the ants and spiders and bees going about their individual tasks, putting the world in order, as best they can? And you’re not willing to do your job as a human being? Why aren’t you running to do what your nature demands?”
– Marcus Aurelius, Roman Emperor & Philosopher