Ever given birth? Nature has created a “birth canal” to bring about new life: If you are feeling “squeezed” right now, perhaps something is seeking to be born in you right now, today!

I’ve learned long ago – and every wisdom teacher I’ve ever had has supported this premise: “THERE IS NO GROWTH IN A COMFORT ZONE!”

Growth –real growth– is never easy, but is always fruitful and worth the “birth pain” or work.

You and I have been “conditioned” from our early years of growing up, learning from our parents and society, being handed a whole chunk of ideas and beliefs which may have worked for them, but may not work for us, in our time, in our current lives.

Breaking free of our conditioning requires us to challenge limiting thoughts. We can say we want success, but any time we are agreeing with conditions that are difficult, and any time we talk about how life is unfair, we are creating resistance with the very thing we want.

So how do we grow?! We grow by being in agreement with all that is prosperous and using every means at our command to make it easy for prosperity, for abundance, for the free flow of life to be in our experience.

Whatever it is that is the greatest source of challenge and fear is also the greatest opportunity for growth. For example, let’s say that you really REALLY want to get a job. But…you’re challenged and afraid of the possible rejection if and when you put yourself out there to make an application and actually get an interview. Let’s say that you cannot stand the thought of applying for a job and then getting that call or letter that says, “sorry, you’re just not the person for us”. As much as that kind of rejection can hurt, it can also be a valuable exercise in understanding the wise admonition: “don’t take it personally”.

How can you not take it personally, you ask! Years ago, when I was auditioning for operatic roles, I was constantly putting myself out there for possible rejection. Although it was disappointing when I wasn’t chosen for the part, I began to understand that it wasn’t me or my voice or my talent that was being rejected, so much as it was a matter of the best “fit” according to the folks doing the evaluating. Yes, it would have been wonderful, I thought, if they thought I was the best “fit”. But if not, their choosing someone else was not a reflection on my talent or appearance: I was nonetheless very good at my art and craft; I was nonetheless very attractive and capable of doing the work. I realized that I need not be diminished by their choices.

For a young person just beginning a career in seeking a job, it can be daunting to make applications and then go through the interview process, and then wait for the “verdict”. If it is a “no”, then applying for the next job could be more difficult, more challenging, more fearful. Unless it is not.

Unless…the process of seeking a job becomes an adventure: an adventure in practicing persistence and self confidence, in the face of rejections and disappointment. What a great way to develop that inner muscle I like to call “courage” and “grit”.

What an adventure to discover courage and grit inside ourselves, when we didn’t even know it was there! Henry Ford once said, “One of the greatest discoveries a man makes, one of his greatest surprises, is to find he can do what he was afraid he couldn’t do.”

Most of the barriers we beat are against ourselves; most of the bars we beat against are in ourselves. We put them there and we can take them down.

One of the great discoveries you and I can make, –one of our great surprises– is to find that we really can do something we were afraid we couldn’t do. What a miraculous discovery to see that the barrier is something we have put up inside ourselves and we really can take it down! Really!

How do we grow? We grow when we choose to open ourselves for what I like to call the GREAT LEAP OF FAITH: to take that plunge into the unknown of our own capacities, our own strengths, our own possibilities. Take that plunge by being willing to risk falling down, risk the rejection, risk the pain and disappointment of NOT getting that job, or that date, or that part in the play. What is right around the corner, as we develop that inner muscle called “courage” is creating a lifetime of possibilities – if not this job, then there is another one; if not that man or woman, I remain open to meet someone who is even better for me; if not that part in a play, I will persist in getting the part that best fits me.

Each step is a learning.

Each step is our way of discovering our inner grit and the joy of becoming RESILIENT.

I just love bouncing back! I feel so powerful, when I do! And…so will YOU!

With love and blessings,