Seeking out Difficulty to Become Better, 1000 Steps to Your Goal, Update

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December 18, 2014

It’s been awhile since my last post. To be honest I couldn’t even remember when I last had a chance to give you guys an update… I thought there would be no way to possibly write a post that covers everything, so instead I made a video. This post is not like my other “going through a year” posts, but is more about what I’ve learned through doing things so far.

I’m constantly amazed at how what I’m learning opens up doors to completely unrelated things. I find that the more I learn about art, the more I learn about myself as a person and how I fit in the world. It doesn’t have to be art, I could have started learning how to be a butcher, I’m sure I would have still learned the same things, provided that I paid attention to what’s going on. I’m also certain that I’m seeing very, very little of what’s actually going on.

In this post I wanted to talk to you guys about understanding that difficulty is not to be avoided. I think we all have in our heads some idea about what a “natural” should feel like, that we should do things that feel completely comfortable to us, that are not difficult, that bring us pleasure and that’s what we should pursue. I’m not sure why that’s such an inherent idea that we have, since it’s completely false and has never, ever been true for a single person on this planet. People, given resources and free reign with no responsibility or challenge to overcome usually don’t end up as the nicest or most stable people, we just can’t relate to others if ever placed in a situation like that, it’s an anomaly… it’s not how we evolved, it’s not something that we can comprehend. Yet since we have all kinds of devices that do many things for us, we try to delegate as many things as possible and do as little as possible.

Pain and difficulty are the only accepted currency for growth. If you’re doing things that are easy and repetitive – you’re not growing. Think back on your life and you’ll find that any single thing you’ve ever done, that has improved your life in any way, has been paid for with pain and difficulty. From riding a bike to getting the courage to approach a boy or girl in school, to negotiating a promotion, in whatever area of your life, whether personal or business, pain and difficulty have always been something that you have to face in advance, before you can receive your reward. Avoiding them is counter-productive… Learning to be comfortable with them, recognizing the feelings that they evoke and being able to push through those barriers will get you to any place you might want to go.

In the video I also talk about learning while under less than ideal conditions, having to work, dealing with all the things that will happen while you’re trying to stay focused. Each day is a step. Each day is extremely short in the overall duration of your life, it’s almost unnoticeable. But each day is a step. Taken in the right direction you will ultimately arrive at where you need to go. I think about 1000 steps is what it takes to become something you want to be. I’m on step 6-700. I’m no longer thinking about whether it’s possible or not. I’m thinking in terms of how to do it better. I understand so much better what it takes to do something, I also see how many more areas of my personality can be improved upon, how many deficiencies and flaws there are. I’m now a work in progress, whereas before I didn’t even know that progress was possible. That’s a mindset that I think a lot of people have inherited, because it’s the default – status quo – mindset  “I’m this kind of person, I can do these things, that’s not for me – that’s about it.” The most powerful thing you can possess is a growth mindset, one that sees nothing as static, everything as malleable and yourself as a work in progress… a work of art if you do it right.

Thank you for reading and watching 🙂

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