Wouldn’t it be nice if life was just easy all the time? I think many of us have this idea (myself included) that we cannot do hard things. I know for myself that I have a tendency to almost shut down when I encounter difficult things. For instance, I’m currently in the process of applying for a visa here in New Zealand so I can stay here long-term. If you have ever dealt with immigration, you will know that it can be a bit of a challenge. There are several documents to fill out, medication examinations, X-rays, seeking advice from experts … On top of that, it’s a costly affair.
If you know me, you know that I have a huge block around paperwork. For a long time I’ve been telling myself the story that I get overwhelmed whenever I need to deal with massive amounts of paperwork. However, I have decided that this is no longer the story I want to tell myself. Sure, there’s still lots of paperwork to fill out, doctors appointments etc., but I have changed my mindset around it.
Here’s the thing. I want to live in New Zealand with my boyfriend, so I’m going to need my visa. There is no way around it. I can’t hide or run away from it. I just have to do it. But here’s the thing: I can do hard/difficult/challenging things. In fact, I have to. And it doesn’t have to be a bad thing. Not at all. Getting my visa is absolutely amazing, and I’m so grateful that there are systems in place so that we can apply for my visa so we can live here together.
Starting my business was also incredibly hard, and it is still hard at times. On the outside it might look like it’s all rainbows and butterflies, but what people don’t see are all the weekends that are spent working. Or the days where I’m having meetings at 9 PM. People also don’t see the self doubt I experience. They also don’t see the days where I sit in the office crying. Or my struggles when I’m doing my taxes. I absolutely LOVE being self-employed, and to me the pros by far outweigh the cons. But that doesn’t mean it isn’t hard. Running your own business is hard. But it’s worth it.
I can also tell you stories about how travelling is sometimes hard. I spent about six months travelling this year, and while I loved it (and we’re planning to do it again next year), it definitely wasn’t easy all the time. Visa extensions, running through the airport to make a connecting flight, food poisoning the day before you have a flight (I’m not joking, it was absolutely horrible) …
I think no matter what you do in life, there will always be hard aspects of anything. Whether it’s having your own business, having kids, being married, travelling, buying a home, applying for a visa, learning to drive or something else. But we can do hard things. I can go to the doctor and get my x-ray because I know it will be so worth it when my visa gets approved. I can do my taxes even though it’s hard, because I know that is just something that comes with having my own business. I can deal with flight delays and food poisoning because at the end of the day I love seeing the world.
I think that sometimes we end up throwing in the towel, just because something is hard, and by throwing in the towel we are actually giving up on our dreams and goals. The thing is reaching your dreams and goals won’t be easy. Sure, sometimes it’ll be easy, and it will be fun, enjoyable, exciting and a million other positive things. BUT, and this is a big but, it will also be hard sometimes.
So, I guess what I’m trying to say is don’t throw in the towel just because it’s hard. Take a deep breath (or 10) and take it one step at a time. You have got this. Ask for help if you need it. I ask for help all the time, I have stopped thinking that I need to do everything myself. Break it down to bite-sized pieces. For instance, with my visa I take it one thing at a time. I try not to overwhelm myself by thinking about everything I need to do. The same thing with my business. Instead of thinking of all the things I need to do, I break it down and do one thing at a time. It doesn’t mean it gets easy, but it does make something hard easier.
Also, don’t lose sight of your goals and dreams. If you want to have your own business, expect hardship along the way. If you want to become an intuitive eater after years of dieting, expect hardship. If you are training for a marathon, expect hardship. I know it sounds kliché but if it was easy, everyone would be doing it. Reaching your goals and dreams will require you to do some hard things. But trust me, you can do them. You have got this.
Lastly, have faith. I know God is here to support me, and I don’t have to carry everything on my own small shoulders. I can let it go and surrender, trusting that God has my back.