Be the Hero of Your Story

People often make the mistake of believing that reaching some plateau in their life will eliminate conflict. If I get a car then I don’t have to endure the crazy transit system. What happens after that? Then you complain about having to drive all the time, being in traffic and develop road-rage. If I buy a house, then I don’t have to deal with people walking over my head or my arguing neighbors next door? What happens after that? Now, you complain about your mortgage; being responsible repairs; or crazy next door neighbors. If I can get married, I won’t have to deal with all the crazy dates and going out all the time. What happens after that? You complain about your crazy spouse and staying in all the time. There is always a conflict.

 ‎”There is no story without conflict, and that is the hardest lesson for us to realize and accept.” – DeVon Franklin

It doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t take the next step in life. It’s important to keep moving forward. But, it’s important that you understand that acquiring something is not going to eliminate conflict. We, mistakenly, believe that if we work hard and obtain something that it will be the key to unlock the life we believe we are supposed to be living. If you lose twenty pounds, your whole life will change. If you marry the perfect guy or girl, your whole life will change. If you have a fancy sports car, your whole life will change. And then, everything will be perfect.  Even if your life does change, you may just get a different kind of conflict. The truth is that conflict isn’t going anywhere.

Want to know why? It’s because we learn through conflict and, secretly, we desire it. You don’t want to admit it, but we love it. Here’s your proof? Would you have loved the movie, ” Titanic” as much if Jack and Rose met, had no problem getting together and the boat arrived safely on land? I doubt it. How exciting would an action movie be without car chases, shooting and the bad guy almost getting away? What if the NBA finals was one game? What if one team allowed the other team to make all the baskets and that was it? Doesn’t seem as interesting without some form of conflict, right?

It’s apart of life. There has always been conflict and there will always be conflict. We experience conflict even as babies. When your parents gave you that toy where you had to drop the right shapes into the correct shaped hole? Your hand-eye coordination was barely developed so it was conflict when you tried to jam that triangle into the square hole. If you’ve ever seen a frustrated baby, then you know there is some serious conflict at play. My point is that you can develop a comfort with conflict. You can expect to experience it and understand that it’s designed to teach you something. You should also remember that if you ascend to a new point in your life that you will inherit new conflicts. Conflict is unavoidable, but suffering is optional. Suffering comes about when we believe that we are experiencing something that we are not meant to be experiencing.

“If you can find a path with no obstacles, it probably doesn’t lead anywhere.” – Frank A. Clark

Here’s the important thing for you to understand about conflicts: You get to choose which ones you want to deal with. You take the next step in life when you are tired of dealing with the same conflicts over and over. If you are tired of dating losers, you can choose the conflicts that come with dating a different type of person. If you are tired of living as a renter, you can embrace the conflicts that come with owning a house. Remember, it’s designed for your growth. If you develop a comfort with conflict and uncertainty, it will counteract your fear of moving forward.  Anyone that goes through life avoiding completely conflict is the not the hero of his story, because the hero has to survive all obstacles and overcome all conflicts to be triumphant. The safe road is for less important characters. Everyone roots for the hero. Be the hero of your story.

What conflict are you avoiding? What choice aren’t you making in an effort to avoid conflict? Can you be brave and accept conflict as apart of the process?