The Easy Place

The Quest for Self Awareness One Moment at a Time

When Life is Hard Try Going Soft

IMG_0595 Olga Lying in a Field of Wildflowers

Image by carlfbagge via Flickr

I know – “When the going gets tough, the tough get going,” right? 

While the best response to a problem might be getting tough and jumping into the fray, sometimes the “tough” would fare better if they reacted to challenges by simply sitting quietly and reflecting on what’s going on.  Maybe even accepting what’s going on.

When we’re faced with obstacles we often react without thinking, moving quickly into fight or flight mode.  Our boss doesn’t like us?  We struggle to prove our worth or start looking for a new job.  We push, push, push to either get our way or escape, ignoring the stress and anxiety that both of these reactions cause.

What would happen if we stopped fighting and just paid attention to what’s happening?  There’s information available when we “go soft”, when we pause and sit with a problem.  Subtleties we aren’t aware of emerge.  By pausing and just noticing what’s happening without judgment or emotion we can shift our effort from fighting what is to figuring out why it’s that way.  We’re then able to see possible solutions more clearly, armed with knowledge as opposed to just raw reaction.

When we respond from a place of resistance we usually end up fighting until something gives.  While this kind of brute force can feel like it’s working, in the end someone or something usually ends up getting damaged (and it’s often us). 

So next time you find yourself in a struggle, let go of the desire to battle it to the death.  Instead, embrace the experience, listen to it, and learn from it.  Chances are there’s a peaceful resolution just one idea away. 

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4 responses to “When Life is Hard Try Going Soft

  1. Beth February 4, 2011 at 10:05 am

    Very wise and sage advice. I like the image that your words have given me of going soft…relaxing into whatever is happening…..like free falling….and allowing myself to land softly. When we get rigid and hard we are more likely to break something.

  2. cp February 7, 2011 at 7:01 am

    Oh! That was sooo me :) What wonderful advice. I can’t wait to apply it to my next adventure. Perhaps it will actually relax me…

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