Are You In Chaos?The longer a game is played, the more chance you have to lose, and the game of life is no different. Chances are that some of you reading this have either experienced great difficulty or challenge in parts of your life or are going through it right now. Maybe it’s a job loss, relationship breakup, perhaps either you or a loved one is ill, perhaps financial issues. Make no mistake, when our journey takes us through these valleys, we go through some truly sinister and difficult times.
Religious and personal values play a huge part in helping us navigate these transitions between the order in our lives and chaos. As difficulty hits, we first struggle to make sense of it. We go through the seven stages of change; we sometimes deny that anything is happening, we go into shock, we get angry. Our minds attempt to process the way in which events are unfolding, what they mean for us in the short and in the long term, what they mean for our ability to meet our obligations and play the roles that the universe has in store for us. When both eastern and western religious and philosophy say that what doesn’t kill us makes us stronger, neither underestimates the power and the danger of the transition. This first phase is the most dangerous when our minds are adjusting to change and loss, and when we are remapping our place. It is all too easy to say to someone in difficulty to worry less, to place one's well being in the hands of the universe or the almighty, or indeed to focus on the problem through an eastern framework of self-examination.
Sometimes though, the smallest flame in the darkness can seem to light the whole universe, and for those in difficulty, the hardest thing to embrace is that order can be born again from a time of chaos, that things will ever get better, and that life can return to balance. Community, friendship and family can be that light.
The universe never provides us with a challenge that we cannot rise to meet. We know this because oral and written tradition, passed down in folklore, religious scripture, historical record and archaeological record, provide clear evidence that others have gone before us who have suffered more, sacrificed more, given more, endured more and gone forward with less. The light provided by friends, family, faith, community, and understanding, more often than not in the history of humanity has granted safe passage to those passing through valleys of difficulty.
For those going through these times, remember the struggles, tenacity and courage of those who went before you. Understand that these times, no matter how difficult, are temporary and will pass. Understand that the universe never delivers a challenge that you cannot rise, with the power within you, to meet.
For those around those in difficulty, reach out. A message, a text, and word can make the difference while our brothers and sisters are enduring the worst of a long path.
The old man strength community now has more than 100,000 guys around the world, bonded by the length of our path through life and the way in which we approach it. It is not our strength and compassion that defines us, it is that we judge ourselves and we help others on the basis of direction and momentum. We head in the right direction, no matter how slow. We never give up, we never back down and we never leave a member of our community behind. Stay old man strong.