A simple life does not mean you will have an easy life. In fact, part of having a healthy mindset is to understand that life is not supposed to be easy. You face challenges, but you do so in a way that promotes growth and understanding.
If you want to get stronger and grow muscles, you need to break them down. You work out hard enough that your muscle fibers get damaged, then your body repairs and builds new stronger fibers in their place. That’s how muscle growth works.
So for somebody who wants to improve their muscles, they need to challenge their muscle fibers. Then, they need to recover. Overtime, you gradually increase the challenge (typically weight) that you are using to further challenge your muscles, and get better results.
After a while of training, you eventually begin to see noticeable results in your strength. Your conditioned muscles not only look better on you, but they improve the quality of your life. Having increased muscle mass allows you to complete tasks easier, have a healthier metabolism, and improves your posture.
You train and challenge your muscles, recover, then grow.
Maybe we should think of our life in the same way we view our muscles?
Reflecting back on my own personal experiences, it’s often at the point of challenges that I learn to grow. When I push my life outside of the comfort zone, or face a major challenge, that is where my life reaches a point where it needs to improve.
It was back when I was given a diagnoses of “general anxiety disorder” that I started down the path of simple living. The doctor gave me a prescription of anti-anxiety medication, and told me it will begin to rid me of my problems in a few weeks. That didn’t feel right, so I talked to another doctor.
The other doctor challenged me to try learning how to meditate and change my approach to the world. A harder task, but a necessary one if I were to improve my life.
With the challenge of anxiety plaguing my well-being, I began to meditate, read philosophy, and run. And while it wasn’t quick, over the next few years I had decreasingly less problems with anxiety. I’ve grown to a place where I have the mindset and tools to keep anxiety to a healthy level.
Do I wish I never had anxiety? I’m not sure. On one hand, it would be great to not have that challenge in my life. On the other hand, because I faced it as an obstacle that I needed to overcome, I’ve improved my life drastically in the process.
If you’ve been around little kids long enough, you know this challenge=growth scenario well. Watching my daughter figure out how to put clothes on, talk, socialize, etc, I see how it’s at the point of challenge that we are doing the most growth in our lives.
Learning to Grow Your Life
So how do we grow in our life? You need to face challenges.
Some challenges are going to be ones that you choose to face. Perhaps it’s public speaking, starting a new job, addressing a problem in your life.
Other challenges are going to come at you without your permission. The death of loved ones, job loss or difficulties, bad relationships, or health issues.
But the key is to remember that if you view your challenges as an obstacle to overcome, you are likely to find a better understanding of your world on the other side.