Don’t Quit

“When the going gets tough, the tough…quit.” That’s how the familiar quote should read sometimes, anyway.  The tough are not getting going in this country anymore, they are quitting when things get tough. I see capitulation around me every day in every city in America.

I’m often asked, “Bo, why is it necessary for us to go through such hard circumstances all the time?” Every time this question is posed, I am reminded of my question to God.  And here is the answer that was finally revealed to me after years of sorrow: “We go through hard circumstances so that we can help others go through hard circumstances.”

As adaptable, resilient, human beings, it is our obligation to not just survive our difficult times, but to learn from them, and ultimately overcome them.  And then we are expected to share what we’ve learned with others.  That is what makes us compassionate human beings.

Who makes the most effective substance abuse counselor, a former drug addict, or a person who just studied substance abuse in college? The former substance abuser can relate to the active, hurting substance abuser while the college grad cannot.  Why?  Because the former addict has been there, done that, and possesses the scars to prove it.  And isn’t it really about being able to relate to, and empathize with others?

When we go through tough stuff, and grow from it, we can actually empathize with others who are going through similar situations. Being able to understand their pain helps them to know that they aren’t alone in their struggles; that what’s happening to them isn’t so rare afterall.  They gain strength and comfort from our experiences, and in turn, we are reminded of how quickly we could end up in a similar position.

When we are hurt by life, it’s important for us to share those feelings with others because afterall, pain is something every human on the planet has experienced at some point.  We may not all know what financial wealth feels like, or the joys of parenthood, or even the pleasures of fame & stardom, but every single one of us breathing oxygen today can relate to what pain feels like. And by sharing the lessons of that pain,and not withholding them, we not only bring comfort to others, but we can learn even more about ourselves as we help them through their difficulties.

If we quit, however, we do ourselves and our fellow man a grave injustice.
Quitting when the going gets tough only weakens us, and causes us to become withdrawn, bitter, and self centered.  And consequently, we actually begin harming our neighbor instead of helping them.

So don’t ever quit.  Weather the storms of life, develop & maintain an attitude of gratitude, and learn something positive from each and every hardship.  And then…keep moving forward, even if its only an inch at a time, by helping others down that cumbersome path.  Because the simple truth is this:  When you help others, you are helping yourself.  When you step outside of your self to tend to the needs of others, you grow emotionally and spiritually.

Keep growing, friends!

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