This post is inspired by a post by our friend John DeVries. John is on the verge of leaving Michigan for an extended adventure to South America on a motorcycle. We have quite a few friends that are at some stage of reformatting their life to do something they truly love. Of this group, John is the closest to actually making it happen. He’s literally days away from launching. Read his latest post about the challenges of pulling the trigger:
When Shelly and I were preparing to leave, we had our own last-minute issues. Since we had already made commitments that were irreversible (quit job, agreed to hold barefoot clinics all over the country, etc.) we didn’t have the option to back out. We were lucky in that regard. Had we not had that pressure, it would have been very easy to toss in the towel.
The combination of fear of the unknown and the frustration of seemingly insurmountable obstacles made those last few days difficult. The closer we got to the launch date, the more pressure we felt. John’s analogy was correct- it’s more like a shuttle launching into orbit than a bobsled. It takes more than one short burst of energy followed by effortless coasting. It takes a relentless, sustained period of plowing through the obstacles.
Even now, there are periods of time when we have to plow through unpleasantness. If we have a long travel day, we usually have no choice but to drive. On our recent drive from Nashville to Connecticut, I had a day where I felt like garbage. I was tired, felt physically ill, was crabby, and had a hard time staying awake. Still, I had no choice but to plow through. We were on a strict schedule; we had no choice.
There are other examples- days when our kids are crabby, I have deadlines that require hours and hours of writing, etc. That ability to plow through adversity is essential to succeeding. Getting to the point to launching often requires tenacity. Even after launching, that stubbornness will be needed.
Take John’s advice- it will get you where you want to go.