by Alun Jones
"If you were all alone in the universe with no one to talk to, no one with which to share the beauty of the stars, to laugh with, to touch, what would be your purpose in life? It is other life, it is love, which gives your life meaning. This is harmony. We must discover the joy of each other, the joy of challenge, the joy of growth."
The journey of life can be challenging at times, but it doesn't have to be difficult. Challenge doesn't necessarily mean "difficult". I'm using the work "difficult" here to mean negative, depressing, too much, horrible, unpleasant, stressful. I think you get the message of where I'm coming from here. Challenges are there to help us grow, learn, and evolve. No one said life was going to be always a walk in the park in the sunshine - sometimes we find ourselves walking in the park in the rain. Of course, we can always choose not to walk in the park in the rain if we want to ;-) But it can be fun splashing in puddles and getting wet, especially know that when we get home we can get dry and put clean, dry clothes on. It's how we view the rain that makes all the difference about whether we embrace or reject the experience. Of course, we can always take umbrella or wear a raincoat to keep ourselves dry too. There are lots of options.
The other day, whilst walking through the park (strangely enough!) I had this sudden understanding and realisation why some people choose to rock climb and explore. Now this may always have been obvious to you and, on one level, it always has been to me. But, I suddenly understood why many of these rock climbers and explorers keep on going. It's the challenge and excitement of trying something new. Once you've climbed on mountain, there's a drive to find another one. A different one. That requires perhaps slightly different skills. A different approach. The need for support from others to reach the top. It will teach new things as the rock climber faces new and, perhaps slightly tougher, challenges. There's that word again "challenges".
I think I've always understood this on a logical level, but that day, walking through the park, I finally "got it!". It was like a lightbulb sparking on in my head and there was a loud "Aha!" moment! The reason we all incarnated in these physical experiences is NOT to have a difficult life, but to experience new and exciting challenges! Again, I've always understood this, but this deeper, more meaningful understanding helped me view things in a different light. Each challenge we face is not there to knock us back and stop us moving forward, it is there to help us grow and evolve!
Look at this way, if all life offers us is the same challenges, day in, day out, yes of course we can get incredibly good at them. But what happens when we grow bored? And trust me, we will! There is an inherent need and drive in all of us to seek out the next challenge that will help us grow and, whether we like it or not, the Universe is pushing us to face these challenges. As I said above, it's how we view them that makes all the difference.
So if you're in a challenging spot right now, take some time out to answer the following questions as honestly as you can:
How am I viewing this challenge? Positively? Or Negatively?
How is this challenge helping me grow?
Why did I ask for this challenge in my life?
What skills do I need to develop or hone in order to deal with it?
Am I, unnecessarily, trying to face this challenge alone?
Right here, right now, what would make this challenge easier to deal with?
Am I taking this all just a bit too seriously and dramatically?
Am I just feeling sorry for myself and being a bit of a victim?
How can I inject a bit of fun into it?
Am I clear about what the rewards will be when I've succeeded?
Remember the wonderful saying by Gandhi "Be the change you want to see". In order to change your challenges and make them more exciting and palatable, one of the key things is to change your approach to them.
One final point on this, no one will punish you if you decide to let go of a particular challenge and ask for another one. You may be a bit disappointed later that you didn't push yourself, but no one will think any less of you. You are who you are, and the Universe loves you unconditionally - no matter what you do.
"We are extensions of Divine Source. We are the architects of our life. We are the creators of our experience. What are you creating?" Alun Illumine