I woke up Saturday morning to the sound of rain on the roof and enjoyed the luxury of a reflective lie–in. Don’t you love that space that is not fully awake but no longer asleep, where your creative mind can bring things forward to awareness?

So here’s where my mind took me as I snuggled beneath the covers:

In exploring the question of what’s behind the Struggling Coach Syndrome, I found a connection to mixed messages about hard work.

Many coaches are refugees from the wage slave life. The idea of working hard for limited reward is intolerable.

Working hard and getting nowhere as a result can lead to

confusion, self doubt and self condemnation.

Yet, in certain circumstances, hard work can be joyful. Rigorous disciplined practice coupled with intense focus and determination can be very rewarding, emotionally and financially.

Look at the resulting polarized beliefs.

Like many people, I interpreted a popular message coming out of the personal transformation movement as: If you’re working hard, you’re doing it wrong.

Contrast this with:  Hard work leads to great reward. None of the 6- and 7-figure business owners I know got there by simply naval-gazing. They readily admit to having worked hard.

So…how to reconcile these two apparent opposites: Hard work = doing it wrong. Hard work leads to reward.

The Eureka moment I had from this reflection: It’s the distinction between hard work and struggle.

If struggle is a matter of working hard for little or no reward, often with a sense of futility…..then what is hard work? And when is hard work not just acceptable, but fulfilling?

Look at what you experience when hard work comes from your passion and dedication to what you hold most dear: Your life, your growth, your message, your purpose. Your contribution to human kind. Your embodiment and expression of love on this planet.

Wow. Just notice what you feel as you read that previous paragraph.

For me, it’s like the difference between a car sitting in neutral and drive. If you step on the gas and rev the rpm’s in neutral, it consumes fuel and creates wear and tear on the engine, but doesn’t get you anywhere.

When you are aligned with purpose and passion, allowing your heart to lead your actions, you are “in gear.” It feels good. And it’s more sustainable.

If you love yoga and hate running, training for a marathon may not be a loving choice for your body or your soul. Awareness and honoring of what works for you makes exercise about more than fitness. It becomes sacred space, an act of devotion.

Take this thought with you into the day, allowing it to percolate gently through the layers of your consciousness:

Diligence, discipline and determination on behalf of purpose, when based in love, can transform struggle into something beautiful and fulfilling. Add devotion and you can change the world.



PS: If you want company and support in your journey of diligence, discipline, determination and devotion, you may be interested in my new mentoring group for coaches. Contact me at lynallen@ritternet.com if you want to know more.