Most of us have uttered this at some time. When I ponder this phrase, I wonder where our mistaken notion of being entitled to non-stop ease comes from.
Modern society creates the expectation of ease.
For most of humanity’s existence, life was short and dangerous. Cavemen hunted, but were prey as well. Before industrialization, infections, harsh weather and crop failures meant a likely death. Surviving each day had been a victory, not a right.
Our expectation of ease must be a first-world, modern mindset. After all, medicine has advanced. Most of us have shelter from weather. Man is the hunter, not the hunted. We easily get our food from markets, which provide products from many sources.
We imagine that others have it easier.
In our leisure time, we view movies and streaming shows glorifying ideal lives. Great health, riches and romantic, passionate relationships. While we know this is fiction, on some level this message speaks to us: we can have it all.
Social media posts showcase trips, outdoor excursions, happy families, great marriages, beautiful homes. We begin to believe that if we are good enough, smart enough or business-savvy enough, we’ll enjoy a life of ease.
This isn’t a sustainable mindset, however. Relationships fail. Our salaries don’t cover our bills. Loved ones die too soon. Health complications limit what we can do. Abusive situations shake us to the core.
Very few, if any, enjoy a trouble-free life. Yes, we go through good times, but everyone faces some type of trauma or loss at some point. Some of us endure more than others. It’s time we realize that to say “Why me?” isn’t realistic or even helpful to moving us forward.
Lessons I’ve learned.
Hardship does not occur because:
- We’re not good enough,
- We’re being punished by God or
- We have bad luck.
Hardship happens because:
- Everyone goes through difficult times;
- A life of ease is a life of stagnation;
- We are on earth to grow and expand our capacity to love; and
- All of our experiences (both perceived good and bad) prepare us for our futures.
When we open to expanding through adversity, we’re more likely to learn from our mistakes and break unhealthy patterns.
Consider “Why not me?”
Perhaps the question we might pose to ourselves the next time life is so danged hard is, “Why not me?”
Read more in my next post: “Believe that each obstacle, challenge expands us. ”