When I was a young teenager I had a really bad friend. I thought she was nice, but she was really a gossip. She would listen to all my personal stories, distort them, and tell them to our other friends. It turned out that none of my fiends were nice that year. Universe, thank you for this ‘friend’
I had a boyfriend once, who cheated on me. While I kind of knew it, I never flat out caught him and I let it go on for longer than I should’ve. Universe, I appreciate you throwing this sleaze my way.
Once, I had a professor who tried to hold his students back from really growing. He supported and encouraged us, but when we showed growth and understanding, when we got to that brink of really taking off, he nit picked, micromanaged and subtly belittled our work to satisfy his own ego as the most knowledgable. Universe, I really thank you for this guy!
Like everyone else, I experience adversity. Some know it more often, some less. I find my encounters with strife and discomfort fewer and further in between as I continue on my spiritual journey, however, I have noticed it bothers me more and more each time. As I have become better at finding what feels right to me and trying to follow that path, when I do encounter situations in my life that make me feel stuck and frustrated or down right angry and depressed, it’s a bit of a shock. As opposed to my younger, years when I felt a little bit miserable all of the time, I was in a sense used to it, now this discomfort is almost unbearable. Sometimes I’m so taken aback, it feels like the floor has dropped out beneath me and I can’t see where to go to next.
I’ve come to really appreciate these moments of discomfort. Once I have passed them and am able see what they have brought me, once the emotion of it has left me, I dare say, I love them. Am I sadistic? No. The truth is, that in all these moments, there is a lesson and an opportunity for growth. It's an opportunity to, as Abraham Hicks often says, ‘know what you don’t want, so that you can know what you do want.’ We’ve all experienced this. It's sort of like not knowing what color to paint your room when you have two choices. So you put one color up on the wall and say, ‘Oh, no, that’s not it!’ and quickly change it to the other.
Sometimes we don’t realize that we’ve felt bad enough about ourselves to befriended a two faced gossip. Sometimes you don’t realize you don’t have to wait until that sleazy guy gets caught cheating (or that you should’ve trusted you first gut response in the first place). And sometimes you don’t see the people holding you back until you become so frustrated with the situation that you break free and soar. When the full scope of the situation hits us, when you are so uncomfortable you can’t stand for any more, you can say, ‘No. That will not do. I need better friends. I am worthy of more. I will find support and encouragement. I don’t need this.”
It’s the presence of duality in our lives. To have great exponential joy and growth, sometimes you have to experience the other end of it, as uncomfortable as it is. This is tied to our soul’s learning and growth. Our soul’s need and desire to understand all that is, be it what we perceive as positive or negative experiences. The truth is, there is no ‘good’ or ‘bad’ experiences, there are only experiences, and they all help us to expand and grow. It's only in our physicality, in our reactive and emotional states that we see an experience as good or bad. On a soul level, they are all positive because they bring experience, knowledge and if we seize the opportunity, growth and expansion. Furthermore, I would even go so far to say that with this understanding and a bit of patience and practice, we may even view these so-called ‘negative’ experiences and good things as they happen. If you can readily identify the positive or learning aspect, the thing about that lesson that will fundamentally change you for the better, as it is happening, you can move through that transition much faster and maybe even with a bit of joy. Joy in knowing you will be better, more complete, and not have to replay that experience again because you are learning about yourself from it. If you can say, ‘I know this guy is cheating on me.’ and instead of waiting to definitively catch him and feel betrayed and hurt, you can say, ‘What was I thinking, I deserve better than this’. If you can appreciate that the situation is showing you how you had been feeling about yourself to even enter into this scenario, you can come out the other side much quicker.
It is in this way that I have begun to appreciate those moments of discomfort and strife, as awful as they may feel at the moment, and say ‘Dear Universe, thank you for all the jerks in my life!” With much love, I wish that you, reader, may you also be blessed with many jerks showing you the way to your truer, happier, more fulfilled self as well.