Not Around, THROUGH!

November 13, 2007

The whole point of life is to face those challenges that crop up and overcome them. Not to walk around them. That’s the only thing dividing the great from the mediocre. The great decided to do more of the things to get them from point A to point B. And in the process, they actually got there!

God do I love technology. It almost works magic. Almost. It would only take a tiny bit more for it to actually count as magic. And I suppose that tiny bit more would be me not understanding it…

But then again, I suppose all of life ‘works like magic’ until you understand it. Take ‘success.’ What an odd word. All it signifies is someone that’s put in all the work necessary to get from point A to point B. And then those of us on the sidelines stare on in awe, wondering what it would take for us to be a success. Well, let me tell you: doing all the things that person did to get from point A to point B.

I think that I make some things far more mystical than they actually are. Again, because I would like to take a shortcut, to not have to do the intermediate steps between beginning and mastering something. But the truth of the matter is that the only way to master something is via taking action steps that correlate with a success in that endeavor. So the only things really worth doing are those things that will get you to do something relating to what it is that you want to do.

Huh, how about that. All this time, you’ve been looking for little tricks to get you to not have to do the things you need to do to do what you want to do. In the meantime, what you should have been looking for is ways to get yourself to do what you need to do even when you don’t want to do them. It’s not a matter of shortcuts around a problem. It’s a matter of shortcuts to a problem.

Everyone, even the best of the best, face challenges every day. The only difference between them and the random schmuck on the side of the road is that when the great ones face a challenge, they don’t run away. They face the challenge. And then they solve it.

It sounds so cliche. But it has to be true. If you just think about it for about 10 seconds, you realize that it has to be true. The people that are successful in life are not in any way fundamentally different from those that aren’t successful. They’re successful because they chose to take the challenges of life by the horns. And it’s through these challenges that people move ahead in the world.

Growth comes from pushing yourself. The key distinction is, what should you be pushing yourself towards? Aha! That my friend is the secret of champions. You should be pushing yourself towards those things you least would like to do. So that you may do them, as a challenge to your psyche, our body, and your ‘soul’ [whatever that part of human is that is somehow ‘above’ the animal instincts… also known as the pre-frontal cortex].

Continue studying, then. Continue studying all the life hacks, all the lifestyle design templates, all the ‘personal development’ tricks that you want. But realize that these are tools to get you to the problems in a more resourceful state of mind where you can face them. They are NOT a way to get you around the problems. The problems are the whole point of personal growth. They are how you grow. Without problems, we could all just sail through life and it wouldn’t make one bit of difference either way. The truth is, we need the problems to live life to its fullest. And we need the problems to feel fulfilled by life.

It’s eustress all over again. The only way for a system to grow is to impose pressure on its homeostatic preconditions. And then by adjusting to those pressures, the system may grow. Sounds dry, sure, but it’s the simplest way to put it in scientific terms.

In personal terms, grow by approaching your ‘problems’ and solving them as challenges!


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