Prosperity is a mind set that transcends suffering.
This Veteran’s Day morning as I was eating breakfast and looking out at the Isle of Shoals, a police car slowly passed with it’s lights flashing. Slow is a relative term because behind it came two runners who were going faster than most people ride a bicycle. In another 2 minutes the third place runner came by, then the first female runner and a few men, then the first senior runner and so on until large numbers came by.
In the mix that followed there were all types. Most were either injured, out of shape, not natural runners, old, young, pregnant or just being social. There were the couples who ran together and enjoyed it and the ones where only one was a runner and the other was doing it for the relationship but it appeared that it was not positive for either of them. And then there were the runner/walkers who seem to love group activities but were not that interested in running.
Almost all the runners shared one common trait: They were overcoming suffering.
The elite runners not only had the right build for running but also had a lot of experience with suffering. As one long distance running coach told me, “There is a level of performance that is a result of natural inclination, good coaching and training, but the elite runners have also mastered suffering at a higher level than others.” What he meant was that there is a threshold that everyone must break through to reach the top echelon of performance. No one is exempt.
How to Reconcile Listening to Your Pain with Achieving Prosperity
This is the biggest and most important lesson of all. There are a lot of New Age and esoteric presenters that talk about listening to your pain and following what you love that may not be correct in their message. Yes, pain is an indication of something being challenged and it may mean something needs repair. But to avoid pushing forward because of pain is not the correct response. The correct response is to learn from the pain and correct what’s producing it, not to abandon what you are attempting to achieve.
There is nothing more precious in life than to have a clearly defined “clear” vision that translates into a “vital” mission and to have the ability to follow it. We see people constantly have a “fuzzy” vision that translates into a poorly articulated mission that fizzles at the first sign of resistance or pain. This is what holds the majority of people back from creating a prosperous life. Without a strong direction that drives you, it’s hard to have the desire or the commitment to push through the pain and discover your potential.
Mastering suffering is key to achieving your full potential and prosperity
To master suffering takes energy and commitment. And most of all it requires the mental and emotional discipline to focus on the desired outcome so it becomes the most important thing.
A tangible example I have noticed was after some very extensive dental procedures as the Novocaine was wearing off, I sat down and started writing an article that was very intense and focused on mission. I didn’t realize it at the time but I was 2 hours past due to take additional pain killers. It wasn’t until I stopped writing that I realized this. As soon as I stopped writing the pain went from a 3 to an 8 our of 10. I took the medication and started writing again until the pain medication kicked in. Within 2 minutes of starting writing, the pain was pushed out by the concentration on what I was doing.
Now there may be those who say you shouldn’t need to suffer to succeed and I say that in fact, when you talk to most successful people that is the case. But the reason is that they have been so focused on their mission that they didn’t notice the suffering. That’s why many successful and prosperous people are good at many things. Often they achieved a high level of prosperity in another area, either as a student, athlete or some other endeavor like music or art, at an early age. They developed a level of concentration doing something they loved to the point where they pushed through pain without realizing that’s what was happening.
For example, when you watch an accomplished guitarist, what you may not know is that there is a high degree of pain that goes into playing. The strings cutting into the pads of the fingers as well as the contortions that the fingers go through is very painful. Other instruments have similar challenges. Whether it’s the pain of managing your breathing in abnormal patterns or holding your facial muscles in positions that are painful after long duration, there is a lot of pain during the learning process. That pain never goes away but as you learn to play at higher levels the music takes you over and the pain recedes during the performance.
The point is that once they have learned to master the process of focusing at a very high level that is beyond pain, that same skill is naturally applied to everything they do. So when they take on a new endeavor, that same discipline automatically occurs and they are able to move to very high levels of prosperity in the new mission. (Please note: The use of the word prosperity is used to mean an abundance of skill and/or knowledge in the fulfillment of the mission)
So as you move into creating your future, it’s very important that you not let discomfort be your guide for the direction you are moving. It’s more important to develop a clear sense of what you want and then move forward through the obstacles until you reach the level of success that fulfills your potential. This is the path to true prosperity in all you do.
Be well and prosperous,
Kris Stecker, Spa Tech Institute
p.s. For more information on prosperity, be sure to check the other posts on the site that focus on both the beliefs that limit prosperity as well as specific skills you can use to have a more prosperous future.