"History has demonstrated that the most notable winners usually encountered heartbreaking obstacles before they triumphed. They won because they refused to become discouraged by their defeats."
That’s a great quote, isn’t it? I like that one. Here are a couple more of my faves:
“The difference between the impossible and the possible lies in a man’s determination.”
“Know what you want to do, hold the thought firmly, and do every day what should be done, and every sunset will see you that much nearer to your goal.”
Don’t they just get you all fierce and determined and shit?
Whenever I encounter quotes like this I get all fired up. I write them down or email them to myself and I read them over and over and each time I do I’m filled with this beastly fire that makes me want to jump up and just devour life.
For about fifteen minutes. Then I just lay on the couch.
It’s not that I’m lazy per se, it’s more that I’m…charmed. I’ve always been smart enough or resourceful enough or blessed enough to do a good job at life without breaking a sweat. I have this uncanny ability to produce work that is about a 10 in terms of quality but only requires about a 4 in terms of effort.
Until now that is.
I don’t know if it’s old(er) age or a sign that the apocalypse is near or what but lately life has been throwing me into situations where coasting is not enough to cut it. My wit and my smile are not carrying me through like they once were and I have to do ugly things like try and put in effort and work hard. And my God is it annoying.
Take my job for example. Before I had it I really really wanted it. And while I wouldn’t say it exactly fell into my lap, the truth is I didn’t really break a sweat to get it either. I showed up for my interviews, I dazzled people with my smarts and my personality, and I sent suitably obsequious thank you notes. Nothing more than I’ve ever done for any other job I’ve ever wanted. And now that I have it it’s as good as I thought it would be but there’s one thing about it that frets me.
It’s hard. I can’t smile and coast my way through it like I always have in the past. The right answers don’t magically appear in my brain the moment after a question is asked of me. I can’t slap a slide together and have people praise me for my brilliant work. I have to think. I have to analyze. I have to actually work.
And then there are my workouts. For the first 35 years of my life I exercised sporadically or not at all. And then one day I realized that my “I don’t work out” days were over and I started doing it. Just like that. I didn’t struggle for motivation, I just got up and did it every day. Back then I was a skinny wisp of a thing so it only took about 2.5 seconds for me to see results. And because I was a complete weakling when I started it didn’t take long for me to get stronger. Boom! Easy.
Fast forward a year and a half and I guess I’ve reached a plateau. Just getting up off my ass and doing something isn’t cutting it anymore. I’m not getting stronger or more defined. I don’t get that wicked soreness that you bitch about and secretly delight in.
Now I have to put in work. The days of shoulder-pressing 5lbs dumbbells with a smile on my face have been replaced by anguished grunts as I use everything in me to press 15′s. No more happy peppy DVD’s that leave me slightly panting but with dry roots. Now it’s the awful wretched infernal (but so effective) Nike Training Club app that leave my face purple (no small feat for a Black girl) and my entire body dripping with sweat. I can’t coast anymore. As that evil psychopath Bob Harper would say, I have to earn it.
I’d really like to say that this phase of my life is teaching my the value of hard work. I’d love to drop some uplifting words about how much more satisfying it is to put your blood, sweat, and tears into something than it is to have it fall into your lap. This would be a really dope post if it ended with me saying how much more I appreciate the things I work my ass off to get. But all of that would be a lie. Because the truth is I want my easy breezy sail through with a smile on my face life back. This shit is for the birds. Because I don’t like to work hard!
But what about you guys? Anyone feel me on this or are you all super dedicated and beastly and love putting in hard work for awesome results? Speak your piece in the comments.