What does it really take to succeed? What is necessary to achieve your hearts desire? Have you ever heard that you need to suffer to make things happen. Well, people like David Goggins certainly think so. Personally, I have been super inspired by watching his videos and reading his book. So I definitely recommend him. However, I do believe Goggins is on the extreme end when it comes to making sacrifices to achieve what you want. I generally agree that nothing comes without a sacrifice, but to what extent? Must we endure the pain and anguish of an ultra marathon to achieve our goals? I think not. Of course part of suffering is a mindset. We can frame things in a way where suffering is more tolerable. Scientists have been able to establish that the physiological state of excitement and fear are essential are the same states in our mind. It is basically the same set of structures in our brain that activate. This is the reasoning, or science, behind what high level performers such as athletes do before game time. They have trained themselves to get excited. They do not get nervous. This happens through training and repetition, so when it is time to perform, they knock it out of the park because they have learned to be excited instead of nervous.
So what about sacrifice? Is sacrifice the same as suffering? Although it can seem similar, it is a little different. Essentially, what must be given up to do what is necessary? From the stand point of task optimization, this can be like what you need to stay away from each day to be more efficient and prevent procrastination? Watching Netflix for hours every day will not help you to achieve what you want in life. Not that you should not reward yourself, which you should. Anyway, sometimes we need to sacrifice a certain amount of social time to do other tasks. Being intentional, however, will ensure you get the time you need since having a community around you is very important. Having beers with your buddies everyday might not be optimal, but hanging out for a bit on the weekend could be the right dose to relax and unwind while getting things done.
Enduring challenge and pain will happen when we set down a path to actualize our goals, desires, and purpose. There will be things that will hurt mentally, emotionally, physically, and spiritually. You might get unbalanced, neglect diet and exercise, or slack on your spiritual practice or lack there of for the sake of other tasks. Learning how to use a calendar will help you to prioritize your self care. Take care of your self so you can be consistently strong in these areas, but even if you do this, there still could be other things that happen. Many successful rappers, for example, endured painful circumstances in the streets on their way to making it to the top. Take some time to search google and YouTube to listen to their stories. Life is challenging for all of us. Some more, some less, but all are present with different challenges. Some of us are born into challenges that seem insurmountable and unfair. Well, life is not fair, but we have the power to rise! It is easy to say this in a blog but harder to apply. I think it is good to be thoughtful about the challenges other people make. So know that it is not my intention to undermine the struggles that you might face at the moment. It is my hope, however, that you can take gratification in the fact that we have so much information and resources today than ever before in history. When we learn to ground ourselves, it is amazing what opportunities we can see and create around us. Know that you are not alone, your struggles are real, life is unfair, and it will take pain, sacrifice, suffering, and a shitload of persistence for you to overcome and make your life better. You are not alone though.
I feel like this is a good place to end, although I have not touched on flow states. Working towards goals does not always have to feel like pain and suffering. When we dial into our true purpose and calling, the grind feels less of a grind when we are passionate about what we are doing. Also, when you learn to optimize your health and fitness and nourish yourself mentally, emotionally, physically, and spiritually, you will get better at triggering productive states where one or two hours will pass like nothing when you are working on building your empire. You can take a short break, move around a bit, drink some water, and keep going. You will get better at triggering these states of flow and will be amazed at how productive you can be. Some people have reported doing a full days of work in a matter of hours because of getting good at flow. These certainly seems like a fantastical claim, so take it at face value. Anyway, that should not be your goal.
Dial into your purpose, love the process, and accept the fact that pain, suffering, and sacrifice will happen, but it won’t be so scary. You will have a great time telling your success story in the future and what you did to build your empire!