Hold On To That Tiger!

tigerEveryday life is a challenge for everybody regardless of their level of success or their accomplishments. Everyone struggles at one degree or another. Your challenges may be external struggles with the world, or struggles borne within yourself, but everyone has something they are contending with.

When you are in the middle of a struggle or going through a hard time it is so easy to think or believe that you are weak in that moment, but the opposite is true. Give yourself credit and honor yourself for the great strength that you possess and are exerting just to stay in the game. It takes a lot of energy to not be crushed by life. Sometimes, living day to day is a heroic accomplishment all by itself.

I just found something that I have been looking for that I wrote about ten years ago. I have actually been looking for it for several weeks, and I wasn’t sure if it was something that I wrote in journal, email, or scribbled down somewhere. I found it this morning while glancing through The Four Agreements by Don Miguel Ruiz. It is a white sticky note with these words on it.

“Sometimes in life while struggling to hold on, we lose sight that we actually have the tiger by the tail.” – AW 2005

Looking back at the time that I wrote that I can see exactly what inspired it. I was recently divorced, a single dad, living a new place, my job was about to become super-extra challenging (in a good way) with many new responsibilities, and I was going to school full time working on my masters degree in counseling. Life was full to say the least and I am sure that I often felt like I was getting my butt kicked by it as well.

When I wrote that line however, I realized that I was indeed doing just fine. Life was full, a bit messy, and virtually crammed with something to do 24 hours of the day but in it all, I was surviving and thriving… I had the tiger by the tail.

When you get tired and don’t feel like you are winning, stop and think about what is exactly going on in the moment. Whatever are you up against, give yourself credit for still being in the fight. If nothing else… give thanks for your struggles and for still being on this side of the dirt!

The chances are that when you step back and look at your situation, you are going to see that you are doing just fine and maybe even better than fine. When you feel that you are tired and straining, it is because you have your own tiger (or tigers) by the tail!

Just don’t let go!

Andy Wooten M.A. Counseling – Certified Life Coach – Aspen, Colorado

photo credit: Coto behind the leaves via photopin (license)

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