"When the going gets tough, the tough get going." The first time I heard that, I was a kid. I had no idea how many times I would be confronted with that lesson in the years ahead.
I remember hearing stories of mothers tearing car doors off burning vehicles or overturning them to rescue their trapped children, or similar stories of physical strength in emotional situations such as those. Adrenalin, they say, is what makes those stories possible.
That kind of physical strength is impressive but it is also fleeting; it cannot be sustained.
Then you hear remarkable stories of survival in unbearable, horrible conditions, people trapped or lost for days, weeks, even months, given up for dead after terrible accidents. How do they carry on?
It's more than just a will to live. That kind of survival is driven by the spirit that is inside each and every one of us.
So where is it, then, when we feel defeated? When we want to just give up and check out? Where is it when we've been slammed onto the pavement over and over again after repeated disappointments?
It hasn't gone anywhere. It's still there. We've just allowed Ego to get in the way, and no, I don't mean Ego as in "boastfulness", which is what people often take that word to be. The Ego is a sense of self and personal identity. It's your human side.
When things go wrong, it is Ego that says, "I'm a failure." Or it might point the finger of blame at someone else and say, "It was your fault!" It is Ego that says, "I'll never be able do that! I'm not even going to try!" Ego says, "I've been beaten down too many times. I simply cannot get back up again."
When we remain locked into these kinds of thoughts, invariably we will be overwhelmed with "negative" emotions, such as sadness, grief, jealousy, frustration or anger. What you're thinking about will always lead to what you're feeling. So if you don't like how you feel, you must change your thoughts.
If you choose to remain attached to your Ego, you will continue to have these negative thoughts, which will lead to the negative feelings. You will remain stuck, unhappy, frustrated with your life or your situation and will be unable to move forward. It is only when you reconnect with your spirit that you will experience its power. All the adrenalin in the world won't do you any good without that mighty spirit urging you on, telling you "Yes, you can do it!"
When Ego is in the way, it is easy to make choices out of pain, need, anger, revenge, guilt and all sorts of other toxic influences. A decision that comes from a toxic foundation cannot possibly yield a healthy result.
But when you let go of the Ego and reconnect with your spirit, you are giving yourself access to the greatest power that is available to you. Your spirit believes and trusts in Divine wisdom and in your ability to use it. When you get out of your own way and listen to your spirit, it will guide you to the best choices you can make for yourself. Its enduring strength and mighty power will see you through anything, if you make the decision to use them.
To be 'in-spired' is to be filled with spirit - to be guided by Divine influence. When we are inspired, we get up and get moving. We create, we accomplish, we achieve. We are motivated, urged to do, to be, to build. That spirit never leaves you because it IS you! Ego shoves it out of the way, given half a chance, but if you make the decision to reconnect with it, your spirit will make its presence known very quickly.
Ego will steer you wrong, every single time. Your spirit never will.
Ego will get you into trouble. Your spirit never will.
Ego will allow you to self-destruct. Your spirit never will.
Ego will con you into self-deceit. Your spirit never will.
Ego will always be weak and fragile. Your spirit never will.
Your spirit is far stronger than your Ego could ever hope to be. But Ego is a master of trickery and illusion. It will make you think it is the one in control, or that it is all-powerful, or that it is calling the shots and you have no say in the matter. It will make you believe you're weak, that you cannot achieve or accomplish, that you cannot create or move forward. It will make you believe there is reason to fear, and it will push you to make poor choices because of that fear.
It will make you think there is no reason to live, no reason to fight for what you want, no reason to love.
Your Ego would have you think there's something inherently wrong with YOU, and that your spirit is some separate and elusive entity that is hiding somewhere dark and difficult to find. But in reality, it is Ego that is a separate entity, a human identity that is not the real "You" at all, for you are a spirit contained within a body.
Any time you are thinking self-destructive or negative thoughts that make you feel disempowered, dark, unhappy, fearful and so on, this is your Ego speaking. Just as it shoved your spirit aside, reconnect with your greatest, purest power and let your Spirit shove your Ego aside.
In doing so, you will find the strength to move forward and to heal. You'll find the passion to create and accomplish. You will find the joy of living; you'll discover your greatness.
You are a beautiful, sparkling, extremely powerful spirit who just happens to transport itself through this Earthly life by using a body as a vehicle - a body that is comparatively weak and powerless, and that has an equally weak and powerless Ego attached to it.
To remember your spirit and to reconnect with its power, just get out of your own way and tell Ego to take a long walk off a short pier.
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