Suffering is optional. I often see people causing themselves so much misery that I think this reminder is important.

Do you find yourself in the midst of too much discomfort too often? Do you feel more comfortable being uncomfortable? Do you think suffering makes you a better person? Were you taught to believe that suffering is beneficial?

If you answered yes to any of these you can join the Suffer Club – most of us have been card-carrying members of this club at one time or another. The glorification of suffering has been a strong societal message for many generations.

I have been told from a young age that suffering is what you and I do. I have also been told that suffering makes your stronger and helps you grow as a person. Buddha even said, “Life is suffering.” He also said we each can be free of our self induced suffering, which created a deeper understanding about how to live with a different mindset.

An interesting thing happens once you quit this club – most people don’t come back. Leaving suffering behind feels much better than holding on to it.

Truth – in the now you can always move away from suffering. This entangled mindset is most often caused by thoughts of the past or the future. In the present moment, suffering does not exist, or if it does you can always just be aware of it, watch it, question it, change your thinking – and it will go away. I hope this encourages you to question what’s not working for you, and what’s causing your to suffer. You really don’t need to suffer anymore unless you really want to. You can free yourself from misery now.

A quick review of Suffering Shrinkers:

*  Take control of your thoughts by becoming mindful.

*  Do your best to eliminate most expectations.

*  Live as fully in the present moment as you can.

*  Put aside all blaming and instead take full responsibility for all your thoughts and feelings.

*  Stop imaging that suffering is heroic or good for you. That is a false belief that needs to be erased from your thinking.

*  Focus on the life you want, on having fun and on expressing the endless love of your heart.

Peace and Love, Jim

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