ARE YOU LIVING OR SIMPLY EXISTING?

Sometimes life seems to come to a stand still, everyday is just like the day before and tomorrow does not offer any thing different.

not livingIt is easy to find oneself caught up in nothing, to find oneself just doing the same thing day after day and not really accomplishing anything. Just existing, breathing air, taking up space and trapped in a world that is going nowhere. It is a challenge when we find ourselves in these situations, especially if we are working through sickness, emotional difficulties, trauma, anxiety, abuse or the many myriads of challenges we find ourselves facing throughout our lifetime. With my struggle with PTSD, it is easy for me to check out of the present and just exist in my house while life passes me by. It is easy to put off everything until tomorrow because I have no pressure of meeting a deadline. Each day seems to drift into one other. It does not take very long before days turn into weeks and weeks turn into months. Then before I know it, I am looking back wondering what has happened to all those weeks and months. I was amazed a few weeks ago when I noticed I have not posted very often this year. I’m not sure what happened to my goal of posting once a week, but the stat page clearly reminds me I have allowed many weeks to go by without posting. However, this is not about posting weekly blogs, it is about living life. Over the last few months, I seemed to have stopped living and merely choose to exist.

Living allows us to focus on how to make the best of the challenges we face.

Existing is easy; there is not much stress in existing and not too many challenges. There are not a lot of demands in existing; in essence, existing is just being, nothing more and nothing less.  However, living is more difficult and challenging. Living ensures we face stress while we face the challenges of juggling daily demands, dealing with problems and moving forward. Living starts the day with expectations that something is going to happen, maybe not big and life-changing, but something will happen. At the end of the day, we will look back and say “I accomplished something today.” However, merely existing leaves us at the end of the day realizing we have accomplished nothing and faced with the possibility of another day of achieving nothing. wheel chair lifeWhile living offers us a chance to make the best of ourselves, it allows us to wake up each day and see the possibilities that are before us. Living will enable us to focus on how to make the best of the challenges we face; living allows us to enjoy what we have, where we are, and whom we are with. Living gives us purpose, gives us reason and gives us hope. Existing does just the opposite, it leaves us trapped in our challenges, stuck in not experiencing what is around us and stuck in having a life that is void of motivation, hope, and purpose.

Living is about engaging fully in the life we have around us.

It is essential to understand that living is not gaged by the number of things we have, the lack of problems we face or the number of Facebook friends we have. Living is not about the amount of money we have in the bank, the house we live in or the type of cars we drive. Living is not about “having it all.” Living is about engaging fully in the life we have around us. Many who have little, experience a richness of life, that many who “have it all” never experience. Money and material possessions do not bring fulfillment to one’s life, nor does it bring a person to experience what it means to live. Material possessions and money can certainly enrich a person’s experiences and makes living life more comfortable, nevertheless, they are not the means of experiencing life to its fullest. Experiencing life to its fullest means we are aware of what is around us, we engage with what is around us, we are active in what is around us, we are involved with those who are around us. It is easy for us who deal with anxiety, PTSD, trauma, abuse and other challenges to merely exist and not live. It is easy for us to avoid what is around us and not engage with anything or anyone. Merely existing is lonely and frustrating, it leaves us unfulfilled with no future, just day after day of nothingness.  Sometimes it is hard for me to live life, it is much easier to merely exist. But I hate just existing.  When I find myself merely existing I find a way to start living again no matter how hard it may be.

starting the day