The Good and Easy Life
What would it be like if your life was good and easy?
Many of us carry a belief that our life circumstances can't be good and easy — they need to be challenging, hard or rife with difficulty. We might believe that "if it's not hard, it's not worthwhile." We might also neglect to entertain options, possibilities or opportunities that allow ease into our lives. If we do allow them, we may be suspicious that the "other shoe" is about to drop. If you can relate to these statements, you might be suffering from a case of "hard is better:"
- You notice when your life is going really well for more than a few days, you feel uncomfortable.
- If you don't have a problem to solve, you look for one.
- When good things happen, you feel a compulsion to down play your accomplishment, win or good fortune.
From a psychological perspective, this mode of operating in the world makes sense. Human beings are designed for survival and our hard wiring doesn't necessarily change simply because our environmental circumstances change. We are wired to believe that if you burn your hand on a hot stove, you are always going to burn your hand on a hot stove. In other words, it only takes one adverse experience to train us. Conversely, we require multiple positive experiences to begin to believe that something positive is happening.
So it makes sense that we are suspicious of the good and the easy. But life is so much more fun when it's good and easy, so why not embrace it? How can you bring more "good and easy" into your life? Try out these approaches:
- Change directions. If you feel like you're banging your head against a wall, stop. Not only are you going to get a headache, you're wasting precious time and energy. If something isn't working, back off, take a deep breath and consider to a new approach. You might need to talk to someone, do a little research or even go for a walk, drive or run.
- Watch for the "trade off" belief. This belief dictates that for every good thing that happens, something bad has to happen to balance things out. When we believe this concept, we often avoid the positive events in life because we fear that we're going to have to deal with a negative consequence. As a result, we choose to avoid altogether in order to avoid the negative. Here's the key: this belief isn't true. Don't fall for this one.
- Actively do and actively receive. The emphasis here is on "actively receive". Included in the good and easy mindset is the idea that good things can simply come to us if we are open to receiving them. If we are out actively doing and closed off to receiving, we create a situation in which it's much more challenging for us to conceive, believe and achieve.
- Play to win. Sometimes instead of playing to win, we play not to lose. In other words, instead of taking the risk, the leap or the chance, we act to protect ourselves. We take a defensive stance as opposed to an offensive stance. Good and easy is found in playing to win. Smart risks usually allow us to harvest big gains. Every time I play to win, I'm so glad I did. And every time I play not to lose, I do so with later regrets.
Claudette Rowley, coach and author, helps professionals identify and pursue their true purpose and calling in life. Learn more at Claudette Rowley.com.
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