During our lifetime, we will all experience a certain amount of suffering. I’ve learned that suffering is part of the journey of life. It shows up to teach us, grow us, and force us to go deeper within ourselves. It is not pleasant, but the lessons that we learn from suffering contribute to our evolution. I don’t know what life would be without suffering. It has been my greatest teacher, made me appreciate the good, and celebrate the things that come with ease in my life.

Because life is a constant ebb and flow, we can’t escape suffering. It’s like darkness. We need the dark nights in order to enjoy the bright days. We need suffering to learn how to embrace and welcome the good, times of ease, and peace that is available to us.

The issue that I’ve found with suffering is that it’s easy to get stuck there. If you’ve suffered through something for an extended amount of time, you can begin to believe that your suffering is a permanent state or “just the way things are.” You may suffer for many moons until you’ve done the work required and learned the lessons you need to shift into ease, but suffering is not meant to be permanent.

A lot of us become content in the suffering stage and never make it to ease. Believing that you must suffer continuously is a fallacy. You were not created to suffer for a lifetime. Because we get so content in our suffering, it becomes our way of life and is normalized and expected. Some of us have endured years of suffering in our careers, relationships, families, and friendships because we think that’s just the way things are. We have a narrative that equates suffering to strength. We become numb to pain and accept the idea that in order for something to be great in our lives, we must suffer in order to achieve, gain, or maintain it. This keeps us stuck in careers, relationships, family dynamics, and friendships that suck the life force energy out of us. We become so drained and depleted that we don’t have the energy required to shift out of the suffering and into a greater expression of ourselves-one that allows for ease in our lives. We never grow or shift into the next level of our lives because we rest in the suffering.

Suffering has become so normalized in our lives that we often reject anything that doesn’t require suffering in order to attain it. We reject things that come with ease, our blessings, and miracles because it seems “too good to be true.” When something comes too easily, we believe it has to be a trick or we shouldn’t trust it. We reject goodness because our narrative is that the only way to have anything good is to suffer for it first.

Try this perspective on: you’ve suffered enough. It is time for you to welcome the ease and joy that life has to offer. You deserve it.

With Love, Ashley Bachelor

“We often cause ourselves suffering by wanting only to live in a world of valleys, a world without struggle and difficulty, a world that is flat, plain, consistent.”

~Bell Hooks