Anything worth doing begins with struggle.
Struggle to push back against the weight of the world, struggle that’s seemingly insurmountable. Until you realize that just like doing a push-up, you can press against the world and win. Ask yourself, is it your body moving when you do a push up? Or is your body stationary and is it instead the weight of the world that you are moving?
Your answer is your perspective.
Your perspective shapes your sense of power.
You’ve got the mindset, now it’s just a matter of doing the reps.
And with this realization you move from the beginning struggle to the middle struggle.
‘Wait, reps… what? Reps?!?! You mean I cannot do one push-up, say that I moved the weight of the world, and walk away ever victorious?
Sorry, that’s not the deal. Now it’s all about reps. Reps invested in honing, improving, mastering, and perfecting. And the more focused reps you invest in, the easier the reps get.
As with repeated push-ups, you will get worn down. Your body will fight you, but not anywhere near the level that your mind will fight you. Your mind will scream tens of thousands of negative words per day at you as you push into new territory.
‘Nobody believes in you’.
‘Who are you to think you have more to offer?’.
‘Who are you to think you have anything at all to offer?’.
‘You know you can’t do this’.
‘You know you don’t have the same advantages as X’.
‘You know you will never succeed’.
‘You know you just want to sleep in’.
‘They will laugh at you’.
‘They will hurt your feelings’.
‘You will look ridiculous’.
And on and on and on.
Our minds… capable of nuclear annihilation of any shreds of self belief we might have the audacity to cling to.
Ignore your mind! ‘Hey mind, fuck off for a bit because I’ve got some shit to get done here’.
And what is it you need to get done?
Invest in the reps!
Reps, more reps. Keep on pushing.
*Note; I just paused while writing this and did 21 push-ups. You should as well. One set of 21, 3 sets of 7, 10 sets of 2 and one final singleton — it does not matter — just do the reps!
OK, so the middle is all reps, over and over. It’s the real grind, it’s where the real hustle is required, and this is where that starting sprint becomes an endurance race. This is your ultra-marathon. Can you keep moving forward?
Yes you can.
Say it with me: ‘YES I CAN’.
C’mon, nobody’s around, say it with me: ‘YES I CAN’.
Look, even if somebody is around you, just say it. Say it loud, or say it softly, maybe touch the person’s arm, look them in the eye, and with sincerity say ‘Yes, I can’.
You can. You can put in the reps, for days, months, years and decades. You can.
The prize for all of this effort? The end result of all this struggle?
The Good: The struggle ceases.
The Bad: The struggle ceases.
The Ugly: A new struggle must begin!
Otherwise, what’s the point of any of it?