Suffering is Optional

I could choose to see my pain from my neck injury as a miserable, dreadful experience that has cheated me out of living…

Or I can choose to let it go, allow the painful lesson to point my life towards a new, more helpful life journey, and use the pain as a tool to care more about myself and others.

I could choose to see my financial problems as hopeless, that I’ll always be minimum wage, not worth anything, and always struggling to stay two steps behind…

Or I can to let the sting of an empty piggybank spark ideas and the desire to execute on them and point my life towards my true passions, and use the money problems as a tool to care more about myself and other.

“Pain is inevitable. Suffering is optional. Say you’re running and you think, ‘Man, this hurts, I can’t take it anymore. The ‘hurt’ part is an unavoidable reality, but whether or not you can stand anymore is up to the runner himself.”

― Haruki Murakami, What I Talk About When I Talk About Running

Whatever you are going through, pain can be useful, but suffering is anything but.

Pain is in the moment.

Suffering is in the mind.

Think your pain is worse, dwell on what your pain has done to you, regret, resent and hate your pain, and you’re only adding coal to the fire. But the moment you stop focusing on what you can’t control, and focus exclusively on what you can, suffering stops.

STAY BOLD, Keep Pursuing,

— Josh W.

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Inspired by: Solve For Happy by Mo Gawdat

Josh Waggoner