The stories I always come back to for inspiration are the ones where people quit right before achieving their goals. They remind me to never, ever quit…even when things look bleak.
We all know what that’s like, to feel that you’ve run out of options.
We reach for a goal…and work for days/months/years, and then get discouraged.
We try and don’t succeed.
We try and fall short of a competitor who’s just better, faster, or more skilled.
We try and fall on our a$$…
I did this just the other day in Crossfit, trying to do a box jump (and falling on my face, literally). I bruised myself in 4 places…five, if we count my ego.
Let’s take the Crossfit analogy a bit further….
Hubby and I have been going for 6 months now:
- He’s lost 20 pounds…I’ve lost less than 2.
- He’s taken his belt in 3 notches…my pants just aren’t tight any more, but they’re the same damn pants!
- He can do the prescribed weight on several workouts…I can do it on zero workouts.
But as the coaches always say, when I complain about being the slowest and weakest in the class: “Well, you’re lapping all the people who are sitting on the couch!”
And they have a point. Sometimes, all we can do is show up every day and try our best. Whether that’s for a job, a workout, or a story we’re writing, showing up is the most important step we can take.
In your gym [or project, or writing group], the bravest person might not be at the top of the leaderboard — the bravest person might actually be at the bottom.
Keeping our faith in ourselves and our passion in our goal is one of the most important things we can do each day. Being generous with our less-than-stellar performance is an act of beauty and grace.
It’s even more lovely to extend your encouragement toward others, even as you’re flagging.
After the tragedy that unfolded yesterday in Boston, I was particularly touched by the acts of compassion and heroism I watched the people in the crowd offer to those around them. Even as people mourned the dead, they opened their arms and their homes to the strangers who were alive.
There is little for most of us to do in this aftermath but offer our deepest sympathy to those going through a horrific time. And to remember the words of Winston Churchill:
If you’re going through hell, keep going.
What motivates you to keep going when you want to quit? Who do you turn to when you need encouragement? Do you have motivational stories or phrases that you refer back to? Enquiring minds LOVE to know these things here at More Cowbell!
Note: If you’d like to read a touching poem on perseverance, click here.