Round 2… FIGHT! Each day is like another level in a video game. You get to the top of your game, get comfortable, and then you level up and start over. Growth does not happen in the comfort zone. Good thing I’ve been out of my comfort zone for a while now… means I’m growing! Maybe I’m getting ready for a boss fight?
How many times does it actually take to get past a really hard level? Many, many times. Many deaths, many losses, many hours, and much swearing… eventually you figure it out. Or you don’t, and you quit and play another game. Well… I don’t do the quitting thing. I finish what I start. I don’t leave missions at 80%, or optional quests unconquered. So, yeah, I die a lot in games because I have to get EVERYTHING. Yes, that means getting the golden chocobo in FFVII and winning all the big matches at the Golden Saucer, killing Ruby weapon, and unlocking all ultimate weapons. That means killing all the little silly frogs in MGS Snake Eater because I can, and unlocking the grunt birthday party in Halo because it’s fucking awesome. In reality… it means I don’t quit on big projects, or stop working out. I set big challenging goals and I meet them. I fail a lot, but the only thing that can actually hold back a person from success is the fear of failing. To not try is the ultimate failure. At least the way I see it. It’s fine to take a break and get perspective, but giving up entirely is unacceptable.
We acquire the strength we overcome. – Ralph Waldo Emerson
Every day, I have another chance to try a different way to meet these big, challenging goals. You can learn from others’ experiences and take advice, but when it comes down to it, you have to really live it, feel it, breathe it, and go through it to understand how to overcome it. Sometimes, making the knowingly wrong choice is the right choice. Which… because I’m on a video game reference today, I have an example. I see the map, I know which way to go.. and I go the exact opposite direction. Just to see what’s down there. Treasure? A hard enemy with a rare drop? A short cut? A cut scene? Nothing? It’s not wasted time and energy if you find something. And how will you know what you’ll find unless you go down that way? So I always do. I follow this same principle in my life sometimes. Yeah, sometimes it takes some back tracking to get back to where you were to progress. But other times, the reward you find is well worth the extra trek. Right now, it feels like I started this “wrong/opposite way” to see what happened, and it’s taking me on a long, super drawn out journey like a dungeon in Torchlight. But the experiences along the way are proving to me every day this isn’t a “wrong way” after all.
A bend in the road isn’t the end of the road…unless you fail to make the turn.