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Practicing Patience During Life’s Difficult Moments

How being present with life's "extremes" can forge a deep form of personal understanding.

Photo by Daniel Mingook-Kim via Unsplash 

Every phrase is open to interpretation. I find simple sayings have a tendency to dictate profound honesty. In one example, I was having coffee with a friend discussing our past year. In hindsight, twenty-four was both difficult in its own beautiful form. Throughout analyzing the overview of our challenges, we got into discussing the process of overcoming obstacles. My friend described her experiences using this phrase;

“You know… I’ve found that life sometimes needs to get worse for someone to experience the good.”

Life is rich with extremes. In varying circumstances, we have to experience the bad to appreciate the good. If we weren’t exposed difficult obstacles, how would we gain steps towards self improvement?

I was contemplating something difficult during my most recent meditation. In this event, my issue was deeply personal. This event cultivated a wave of (what seemed to be) daily detriment. The daily begrudging of pushing onward, scraping by and forging forward resulted in personal exhaustion. Life was blinded with these daily difficulties. I would ask myself; “In moments of personal suffering, where is my light hiding?” I chose to become a seeker to search deep within myself.

The answer came with time: Choose to take everything as a lesson.

I started taking these personal “extremes” as everyday lessons. I journaled my deepest thoughts, feelings and hurdling emotions. I warmly welcomed them into my life without hesitation. I accepted them as my own temporary guests. I MADE myself a witness to the light hidden within. After many deep emotions, I reminded myself; “My light will always follow. To me, it’s life’s simple rule of thumb. Little by little, the hidden light was beginning to show.

I noticed the ending of “extremities” forged new understanding. Once I was comfortable with new types of understanding, healing came in its natural form. Focusing on understanding created a comfortable environment for an open mind. An open mind is a beautiful tool for personal healing.

If you are facing unwaveringly difficult circumstances, be present with your extremes. Gently reminder yourself we only have this moment. Therefore, we should celebrate the difficult process of healing. Once you understand your difficulties, and welcome them, everything will seek your alignment. I have never known a personal light that failed to shine out of darkness. In the end, you will always shine in your own time. 

The key practice is personal patience.

Once the healing begins, the difficulties will dissipate. And when life decides to resurrects past circumstances, you will seek your flame of inner guidance. Let the light take its course; in the moment of better or worse. 

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People look for retreats for themselves, in the country, by the coast, or in the hills . . . There is nowhere that a person can find a more peaceful and trouble-free retreat than in his own mind. . . . So constantly give yourself this retreat, and renew yourself.

- MARCUS AURELIUS

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