Over the past week, I received a phone call from a young brother that I designed a prom tux for about 3 years ago. Sharp brother, comes from a good home, loving mother, very articulate. He’s currently in his final year in college studying to become a doctor. This brother called me out of the blue to vent that things have gotten difficult on multiple fronts. Obviously I won’t get into details of our conversation but I did share with him one principle that compelled me to write this as a cardinal rule in the SilverSpoon Handbook: Make room for growth.
Let’s be clear, I am willing to bet every dollar in my bank account that I am not the first person to say this. In fact I vividly remember my late adopted father telling me this on multiple occasions. And like anyone my age I always wondered what the heck he was talking about. Society tells us that making room for growth is to rid yourself of “toxic people” or unfruitful relationships. [Society] also tells us that making room for growth is to embrace the law of attraction by saving more and spending less. But it wasn’t until that call with this young brother that I realized what it means to “make room for growth”; it simply means to “embrace the suck”.
We all face obstacles, trials and tribulations on a daily basis; and as we get older a lot of those problems get worse. But in these times of adversity to make room for growth we have to embrace every problem we are faced with. To put this into context, think of someone who is 300 pounds with a goal of losing 70+ pounds, just because that person has this goal doesn't mean food no longer exists. It also doesn’t mean that person is just going to be able to go into a gym and the weight is going to be miracled away. In the process of getting better that person is going to be in physical pain from working out, mental pain from having to avoid the temptation of unhealthy eating, emotional pain of doing work and not seeing that work bear fruit. But when that goal is met look what all that pain did; it made that person who they currently are. In order for that goal to be met that person had to endure these pains in order to succeed.
This is the true nature of making room for growth. It’s ok to believe that removing people and situations from your life is “making room for growth” but growth only truly takes place when you embrace the pains of life. Life sometimes requires losing friendship but in that rejoice because that means an opportunity for growth is taking place; life sometimes requires a series of failures to take place but in that too rejoice because that means the opportunity to grow from that pain is taking place. As a christian I am a strong believer that God doesn’t put more on us than we can bear so in this understanding with every obstacle we face rejoice! Don’t run from it or cower be glad that these problems are plaguing you because now it opens a new room for you to go through. Like a house the more rooms you add the more territory you must take up.
The converse of this is also true. If you are currently in a state of constant comfortability then ask yourself is the peak of growth that you want? Do not get me wrong I am not saying go out and seek conflict what I am saying is there is a blessing in every situation that surrounds us and we must embrace the situation just as much as we revel in the blessing. I spoke with a client the other day whom we had some delays in his order and where he apologized for “nagging me” (and by in large called me everything but a christian- despite only being 6 days behind schedule for a event 4 months away) I emotionally expressed to him that I am blessed to have him as a problem. I told him, “do not apologize for calling me. I am actually excited to have someone calling me asking about their order because there was a time where NO ONE was calling me at all.” I asked to be successful and in success there will be times when everything goes to hell in a handbasket so make room for that because that is the only way you can grow.
"God has seen me thru 100% of my worst days" ~ Darion Weathersoon