challenge yourself

Life is hard. And if it isn’t hard, it can get really hard very easily.

Should we shy away from the pains and go down the path of least resistance? Or should we accept that it’s hard and crawl through it?

What do I do if I have a grandiose idea that I can’t find anyone else interested in? It’s my fault really that I haven’t established the connections with the type of people in the same boat as me, and it’s my fault that I can’t convince the half-hearted ones that it’s worth doing.

But do I give it up and go for something that I’m not at all passionate about or even interested in? What does that say about the type of person I am? Will I be able to look at myself in 2 years and accept the decision? It’s … annoying to think about.

I think one of my biggest problems is that I’m insanely bullheaded. When someone tells me I can’t do something, I just want to do it more. When things feel impossible, I feel shitty but I still feel like I can do it. And most of the time, I do come out unscathed.

A lot of it is because I like challenges. I also always feel like I should hold myself to greater standards than the day before. And I always feel like there’s so much more that I’m missing out on that I don’t want to regress on any one part of it.

There’s a line in Good Will Hunting that I often remember. Really, it was the moral of the movie. No one wants you to hold yourself back. Will (Matt Damon) had the potential, but always made excuses about what he wanted to do. Near the end of the movie, his best friend told him that it would be an insult to them if he wasted his potential, and his fondest wish is that one day he’ll call for Will and he won’t be there because he’ll be pursuing something greater than holding himself back for his poor friends. Not that I think I’m like that, but I find that idea very warming - don’t hold yourself back for others.

The greatest fear for a lot of us is that we’ll look back on the last 10 years and realize we’ve wasted it. And I do that already to my last 10 years. I don’t know how I would live with myself if in 10 years time I still feel the same way.

So that motivates me to challenge myself more daily. Sleep is a challenge because I’d much rather be doing something else. School is a challenge because I constantly feel like I could do so much more. Work is a challenge because I constantly overestimate and I’m overly ambitious. And the problem is, I don’t have a great plan or routine or algorithm for this. I just bull rush my way through. Maybe it would be better overall if I scaled things back to within my reach. But my conditioning makes me feel like that’s defeatism talking.

Sometimes I talk to other people who don’t feel the same way and I want to shake them and tell them to stop being crazy - to push themselves harder and find what’s right for them and challenge themselves harder. But then I feel like I’m actually the crazy one.


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