If you are wondering why life is so hard, then there is probably something missing from your life. Ask yourself, are you living a life of complacency or a life of purpose?
Regardless of how you define “purpose,” you know whether you are chasing it or settling for less. Interestingly enough, you will face challenges in both cases. The only difference is how you feel at the end of the day.
Why Is Life So Hard?
When you question why life is so hard and you are chasing your purpose, you know there is something that makes everything worthwhile. As “risk-free” as settling may appear, you will bear the burden of never reaching your true potential. You will always be wondering if there is more to life than the one you have lived.
While the journey to change your life is not always easy, it should ultimately be enjoyable. You should enjoy learning more about yourself, your goals, and your motivations.
If you find yourself wondering if life gets any better, here’re some tips for you:
1. Surviving Versus Thriving
Every day, you have two choices. You can choose to listen to the loud voice of fear and self-doubt, or you can listen to the quiet voice of confidence and purpose.
The quiet voice of confidence is the voice that is pushing you to chase your dream life. Your dream life is the life you would live if you did not have any responsibilities or obstacles. If you are wondering why life is so hard, you could be struggling to accomplish your purpose. You may want to start a business, but you need consistent income from your current job. There could be the challenge of overcoming a disadvantage you were born with or the environment you grew up in. Whatever the reason, there is a struggle that you have not conquered yet.
While you may feel you are making the best decision with the cards you have been dealt with, that doesn’t change the fact that you are meant to do more than survive. As essential as survival is, you don’t want to reach the end of your life never having truly lived. There are plenty of people who find their last days filled with regret because they always succumbed to their fears.
If you want to make your life easier, then stop putting your dreams on hold. Start taking small steps toward accomplishing them each day. Also, make sure you celebrate your small wins. This will help you build momentum and enjoy the process, so you don’t feel like quitting when challenges arise.
Even though you may not enjoy failure, it is okay to fail at trying something new. In fact, failure is a great sign to know that you are chasing your purpose and listening to your voice of confidence. Continue to learn from your mistakes and allow them to transform you into your ideal self.
2. Emotions Run High
If knowledge is power, then knowing what to do with said knowledge should make life easier. However, you will find that is not always the case. In fact, you can go out on a very stable limb and conclude that most people know what they should be doing.
Each year, close to half of the population makes a New Year’s Resolution. They have a plan of attack and they know what needs to happen for them to accomplish their desired results. Yet, less than 10% of people actually achieve their resolution each year. 
This begs the question: Why is life so hard when you have a plan you know will work?
There are plenty of salespeople who know if they reach out to a certain number of people each day, they will have a successful business. Some couples know if they listen and consider each other’s feelings before taking action, their relationship will benefit. Whether you are talking about professional or personal goals, you know the action needed for success.
The disconnect occurs when you haven’t taken your emotions into consideration. It is difficult to consider someone’s feelings when you feel taken for granted or unappreciated. It can be difficult to make the next phone call when the last five people said no to you. There is an emotional aspect of life that makes doing the right thing difficult.
Studies show you can increase the likelihood of you overcoming your emotions when you use the ‘If-Then Principle’ to prepare yourself ahead of time.  The way it works is you create your response beforehand, so your emotions don’t get the best of you later.
For example, if you have friends who eat unhealthily, you can say, “If I go to lunch with them, then I will order a salad.” When you are dealing with sales, you may say, “If I am told no, then I will keep making calls until I hear yes”. As simple as it sounds, knowing how you will handle setbacks is what sets apart those who are surviving from those who are thriving.
3. Burning the Candle on Both Ends
If you are still questioning why life is so hard, then you need to ask yourself if you are working too hard. You probably chuckled a little at the statement, but humor me.
Your life is a cumulation of your experiences. Some of those experiences are going to be more pleasant than others. If you find yourself with an unbalanced amount of unpleasant experiences, you need to determine if you are setting unrealistic goals for yourself.
For example, if someone sets a goal to lose 60lbs in 30 days, they may not know how unlikely that goal is to accomplish. If they knew the average weight loss regiment would recommend losing one to two pounds a week, then they would know two pounds a day is unhealthy. Nevertheless, if you set an unrealistic goal, you are going to feel deflated when you miss it.
Life gets even more difficult as you try to find a way to accomplish the achievable in an unrealistic timeline. You miss the fact that you have achieved tremendous progress along the way because you feel the failure of not achieving your goal. This can continue to be frustrating and have you asking yourself why is life so hard.
The best way to overcome this feeling of frustration is to give yourself more time.  You will be surprised how much lower your stress levels are when you give yourself more time.
Do you recall a time you had an assignment due in school or a project due at work and you needed more time? You know your presentation would be flawless if you only had another day or two. Then, by a stroke of luck, the meeting or deadline was moved back a week because someone got sick or had a conflict in attending. How amazing do you feel when you find yourself with more time than you expected? Go ahead and give yourself the additional time and see how it changes your perception of the situation.
4. Looking in All the Wrong Places
Life can be really hard if you are only thinking about everything wrong in your life. Believe me, I know there is a lot wrong in the world, but there is plenty right in the world, too.
You get to choose what you want to focus on. If you train your mind to only recognize what is wrong with the world, it makes it almost impossible to see the opportunities. Imagine someone who only watches the news. Most people acknowledge the news is full of negative stories that create fear, anger, and frustration. As a result, your perception of the world will be skewed by the constant bombardment of negative information.
A negative perception can also be created by associating with people who are always complaining about something. Whether they are complaining about their family, their relationships, or their job, it will cause you to ponder about the issues in your life.
For you to overcome a negative mindset, you need to take two actions. First, you need to reduce the negative information you are absorbing. You will need to spend less time watching the news and you need to reduce the amount of time you spend with negative people. This can be difficult if the negative person is a family member or a close friend. However, if their mindset has you question why is life so hard, you owe it to yourself to change your associations.
The second thing you need to do is create a positivity journal. You don’t need to write in it every day, but you should read it every day. You should start each day reading about all the things you love about your life. This will help you appreciate the joys of your life even more because those joys are not being drowned out by the day to day challenges.
The reason why life is so hard can vary from person to person. Your personal growth and transformation should comfort you every time you look back and recognize how far you have come.
Don’t grow discouraged when things don’t happen as quickly as you want. Instead, focus on the fact that you are taking a step in the right direction each day. If you are better each day than you were the previous day, you will love you the person you become when it is all said and done.
Featured photo credit: Krists Luhaers via unsplash.com
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