You Love Your Struggle
What if I told you that you might be creating your own struggle? This isn’t your fault entirely because humans are built to survive very difficult things. It’s in our DNA. But what if I suggested that your DNA might be trying to sabotage you? Your DNA doesn’t know that you live in 2019 and you are no longer getting chased by bears or working around the clock to find food before Winter arrives. Your DNA is smart, but it doesn’t know that you are not your ancestors. Together with your subconscious, your DNA is creating a struggle that is not really yours.
Why I Needed To Understand This
I started getting curious about this a few years back when I took some basic classes in both neuro-phycology and brain health. I wanted to understand why I was always ready for a fight, when in fact, there was hardly ever a foe or an entity to go to war with. The entity I was looking for almost always landed in my own lap… making it impossible for me to ignore. Why would I do this to myself? Why would I “want” a foe… or struggle?
We have this obsessive need to have struggle because we have a brain that is capable of doing many things at one time. A brain that is constantly looking for the path of least resistance and through the channel of least pain. Your brain will hunt out anything that causes you less pain. (this is what habits, addictions, and patterns are built on) We want to struggle because when we overcome it, we are proud. We get a nice drip of dopamine and have a sense of accomplishment.
I am also convinced that our brains are bored as fuck. If we aren’t constantly trying to learn something, our brain will birth a struggle just so it has something to do. One of the best remedies for dealing with self-built struggles is to get learning.
Where it Shows Up
Chances are, you have seen this in action. Often our children do this so we take pity on them. They proclaim how awful their lives are, how badly someone treated them, and how hard they have to work every day to rid themselves of the pain they were handed as a youngster. They “choose” to allow things to hurt them years later… just like you “choose” to allow past bullshit hurt you too. As little kids, this is endearing, but in an adult, it’s tragic.
You see this at work with people who are never satisfied and always want to play the game of blame. They blame everyone as to why their life doesn’t look the way they want it to.
You see it in your family when you all keep the struggle alive by reinforcing false stories or embellished ones because they sound so much more convincing than the truth. We paint the struggles to be harder than they are because we need people to see how far we have come and how resilient we are.
You see this in your health when you tell yourself a story about why you cannot take care of your self. I know this one well. I let go of taking care of myself for the better part of two years because of an injury. I told myself that the injury was holding me back when really it was just me not wanting to be uncomfortable. I have paid for that little bullshit move and am finally on the path to remedying it.
Why We Are Addicted
Most of us are addicted to struggle… it makes us feel alive. Most of us are not facing real “life and death” situations every day and so our brains take over and start creating life struggles to keep us in a state of overcoming. Our brains need to be accomplishing and progressing… which also begs the discussion of body self versus spiritual self… are we really two (or more) entities at war with one another every day. I think if we open our minds to the idea that we could be, we might feel less anxiety or dissatisfaction about our lives. We might start realizing that our struggles are not really struggles at all.
Life used to be really hard. Like really really hard. We live in a time where life is so easy and where most “problems” are built from trying to keep up with a world that is obsessed with progress. You aren’t struggling, you are creating problems so you can feel accomplished. I do it too. Perhaps its time we look up from the struggle and start cleaning up our own mess.