If our joy, our contentment, and our overall psycho-emotional well-being is based solely on being successful in all areas of our lives, we are setting ourselves up for a lifetime of misery and discontentment.
Rarely will things go exactly as we had hoped or planned for.
There will almost always be obstacles, detours, and unforeseen challenges in our path.
If this is enough to give us a sense of failure, loss, or even hopelessness, we may find that we spend most of our lives feeling unhappy and defeated, the victims of our circumstances.
If, however, we can redefine success to include the obstacles, to include the detours, and to include the unforeseen challenges along the way, we will find that we actually give ourselves the opportunity to find a harmonious relationship between our internal and our external lives.
When we begin to see and to embrace that which is unexpected, unpredictable, and even undesirable a gift, not a burden, we will discover a whole new world in front of us, a world that is made up of an infinite number of micro-opportunities for growth, gratitude, and celebration.
Holistic Budo: As it is in budo, so too it is in life. As it is in life, so too it is in budo.
All photos by Robert Van Valkenburgh unless otherwise noted.
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