Want to be Happier? Stop Struggling


This story of unknown origin has been made its rounds many times because it bears a powerful message.

A man found a cocoon for a butterfly.

One day a small opening appeared, he sat and watched the butterfly for several hours as it struggled to force its body through the little hole.

Then it seemed to stop making any progress. It appeared as if it had gotten as far as it could and could go no farther.

Then the man decided to help the butterfly.

He took a pair of scissors and snipped the remaining bit of the cocoon. The butterfly then emerged easily.

Something was strange. The butterfly had a swollen body and shriveled wings. The man continued to watch the butterfly because he expected at any moment, the wings would enlarge and expand to be able to support the body, which would contract in time.

Neither happened.

In fact, the butterfly spent the rest of its life crawling around with a swollen body and deformed wings. It was never able to fly.

What the man in his kindness and haste did not understand, was that the restricting cocoon and the struggle required for the butterfly to get through the small opening of the cocoon are God’s way of forcing fluid from the body of the butterfly into its wings so that it would be ready for flight once it achieved its freedom from the cocoon.

Sometimes struggles are exactly what we need in our lives.

If God allowed us to go through all our life without any obstacles, that would cripple us. We would not be as strong as what we could have been.

Not only that, we could never fly.

What is helpful to me from this story is the importance of accepting what we call struggle, and viewing it instead as part of the activity that leads to growth.

When we view our challenges as struggle, we tighten physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually and restrict the fluids of growth.

Or, as parents when we step in to rescue our children from experiencing pain and conflict, we deny them the growth that solving their own challenges brings about.

In a recent interview with Ali Bierman, psychotherapist and author, she said that our struggling and suffering result when we are separated from the Divine. She believes that to live in happiness you must discover and love your True Self – who you were at birth before caretakers and society implanted programs into your subconscious mind creating the false self of the ego world. Enjoy this interview and share what resonates from it for you.