Have you ever dreamed about how great it would be if life was easy? Easy as in you’d never have to work for happiness or success or could be “normal,” you didn’t have to deal with illness, addiction, change, face your fears or grapple with discrimination. Wouldn’t that be amazing? Maybe.

I often wondered what the consequences of a problem-free life would be. It’s what made a childhood classmate stare at me with disgust when I told him “heaven may be boring,” because there were no more battles to be fought. That doesn’t mean there aren’t things in life that should be easy. Like health insurance and our rights to mental health treatment or being able to be who we are without be discriminated against. But the act of fighting for what we believe in, learning the tools to face our fears and overcome inconceivable challenges are the thorns that ultimately lend us to beautifully bloomed flowers.

Put simply, you can choose to live in denial about your illness, addiction, or your unhealthy relationship, or you can stop sweeping the dust under the rug and face it. The former may appear to be the easier life, but it’s not. It’s self-confidence and courage that gets strengthened every time you tackle what feels hard, that makes life not only worth living, but helps you move effortlessly toward self-growth, healing and happiness.

The posts this week are all about helping you to overcome what feels difficult. Read them not as a way to make you feel guilty or bad about the life that you are currently living, but to give you the tools, support and hope you need to get through the inevitable hard parts in life. 

Why the Supreme Court’s Ruling Matters to the Mentally Ill
(Depression On My Mind) – Obamacare opens the doors of hope for all individuals with mental illness. No more paying cash for mental health services to hide your diagnosis from insurance. No more being afraid of seeking treatment. Could this 2014 change ultimately alter the face of stigma and discrimination? We’re hoping.

The 5 Most Controversial Addiction Treatments
(Addiction Recovery) – In desperation, we often look for immediate answers even if they’re not the best ones. Discover the shocking treatments being used to treat addiction, some even worse than the addictions themselves.

Unexpected Challenges of Parenting: Part One – New Parents
(Sorting Out Your Life) – What you should expect when you’re expecting? Read to find out what parenting books won’t tell you about the challenges of being a new parent.

Girls Gone Wild… Why Women Cheat
(Sex & Intimacy in the Digital Age) – Is there really a difference between men and women when it comes to cheating? The differences according to this post are night and day. Learn the common reasons why women cheat and read what most cheating women don’t think about-the long-term effects of an affair.

Renovate Your Relationship: Replace Unsafe Couple Dynamics
(Healing Together for Couples) – It’s not just physical aggression that can wreak havoc on your relationship. In fact, verbal aggression or any emotional response to anger that threatens your partner or your relationship (withholding, difficulty forgiving) is in need of healthy renovations. Get the tips to remake your relationship here.