Strength

Some people believe holding on and hanging in there are signs of great strength. However, there are times when it takes much more strength to know when to let go and then do it.
- Ann Landers

 

Our society places a lot of stock in an individual’s ability to be strong in difficult times. We are taught to believe that it says a lot about a person when they can “hold on” or “hang in there”. And while I am not suggesting that there are not times when that is true, because I know for sure that it is…but I do agree with Ann Landers’ words. Sometimes the harder thing to do is have that difficult conversation, to walk away, to leave, or to let go. Think about it. Even though you may not like a particular situation you are in (a job, a relationship, a life circumstance, etc.), at least you are familiar with it…are used to it…know what to expect from it. Over time you can even become numb to it and/or get to a point whereby you are able to ignore it or work around it. This is the more natural and easy path to take in these kinds of situations. Conversely, when we are in those same difficult situations the thought of having to talk about the “elephant in the room” can be too painful or tough to consider. The idea of having a difficult conversation with someone, of quitting your job, of ending a relationship, or of changing your way of life can be scary for any of a number of reasons.

It’s a classic choice between fight or flight. As a society we admire the fight response because we have been taught it’s the stronger, better response. And let’s not forget how Hollywood makes “fight” look glamorous and exciting too. The flight response on the other hand is seen as the cowardly way out. I find this troubling as I think this mindset accounts for more problems in our society than solutions. I think it is one reason why we are such poor communicators. I think it is one factor that causes divorce rates to be so high. I think it is a contributor to the bullying we see so much of in our schools and workplaces.  And I think it is one component of the overarching anger-filled, negative veil that seems to shroud so much of our society today.

At the end of the day we are the choices we make, so make every one of your choices an opportunity for positivity and success in your life. Don’t shy away from a choice because it is a difficult one. You are only ever one choice away from a new beginning every moment. Every choice defines you…every choice gives you a chance to pave your own way…to literally create your life. So be strong and make good choices…hold on when it is appropriate to do so but let go when it is time…no matter how hard it may be.

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