The Problem Is Not That There Are Problems

The Problem IsNot That There Are Problems“The problem is not that there are problems. The problem is expecting otherwise and thinking that having problems is a problem.”

~Theodore Rubin

Many of us are striving for a happy life, where everything goes well, we feel good, we are having good experiences and there are no problems.

And we might even get to that place and everything seems great – and then something happens. We or someone we know gets sick, someone steals our wallet, our car breaks down, a work project doesn’t go as expected, we get into an argument with someone, the list goes on…

The truth is that there will be problems in our lives. And that’s ok. We can refuse to accept it and struggle each time a problem occurs. “Oh no! Not again! Why me? Why now?” Or we can accept that struggling is a natural part of life and live with it. The  Buddhist view on this is: “There is Suffering.”

How can we practice accepting problems? Here is a simple exercise I have used in some of my workshops:

  1. Think about a situation or problem that is making you feel badly.
  2. Say to yourself: “This is a moment of suffering.” (Becoming mindful of what is happening.)
  3. Say to yourself: “Suffering is a part of life.” (Reminding yourself that this is part of the normal human experience.)
  4. Say to yourself: “May I accept the circumstances of my life.” (Or you can choose another phrase that works for you. For example: “May I safely endure this pain.” “May I learn to live with ease and well-being.” “May I be strong.” You can put your hands over your heart as you say it, if you would like.

Having a problem is not a problem. Not accepting our problems is the problem. How are you doing with embracing your problems?

Manuela loves helping professional women bring more balance, happiness and success into their lives!  Visit Manuela’s Website for Success Life Coaching and check out her upcoming “Be Yourself, Honor Yourself, Speak Up for Yourself” Workshop!

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