by Darrin Schenck

Share

by Darrin Schenck

Share

I got a reminder that life isn’t meant to follow the script we all write out in advance.  This is a blog about resiliency…

I am an ambitious person; I need to be busy and have things to work towards.  I set goals in categories such as work, fitness, personal and more, and more often than not I end up where I want to be.  But that path is rarely a straight line, and I got a reminder of that recently.  But it was a good chance to regroup, recover and get back at it, so here is what happened…

I was chasing an opportunity that is as exciting a thing as I have pursued in a while.  It is perfect for me, in my mind anyway.  Once I got locked onto this idea, I was obsessed with bringing it to fruition.  I wanted it, bad.  I still do.  And it may still be in play,, but for now it is likely on hold for an undetermined amount of time.  I was left in limbo for quite a while, not sure what to do, how hard to push.  I rolled the dice, and came up with a plan to try and push things forward.  I needed to know, and the suspense was killing me.  I never broke my own protocol of one email per week.  Diligent, persistent, but not too pushy.  When I finally got a reply I hurriedly clicked on the email, expecting to see exactly what I was hoping for.

It wasn’t.  It was the exact opposite.  I was gutted; I couldn’t believe it.  I literally had to sit down for a moment.  I was torn between punching the wall and throwing up.  Yeah, that kind of devastated.  I moped around the rest of the day, despondent to say the least.  I rescheduled a work meeting because I knew I would have a hard time giving the right energy for the meeting, and that would be unfair.  I was pissed off to say the least, denied something I desperately wanted.  I shut down, did nothing productive the rest of the afternoon.  But, having been here before, I knew I couldn’t dwell for long on an outcome that I had no control over.  It was time to get up, dust off and regroup.

Having a sports and competitive background for all my life, I have tasted defeat plenty of times.  It is part of the path that you walk as someone in this type of pursuit.  There is no way around it, without losses and time regrouping and retooling, you do not grow.  Simple as that.  It’s not easy, but it is pretty straightforward as to what needs to be done.

I got up the next morning with a whole new attitude.  I wasn’t sure if it would kick in this early, but it did.  I knew it would come, and was ready to be patient with myself for a few days if needed.  But I was not ready to give up.  Not even close.  I headed to the local coffee shop where I spend a lot of my creative time and got to work.  The first thing I did was respond to the email from yesterday.  I expressed my gratitude for considering me in the first place and made it abundantly clear that I was willing to negotiate and change the plan to start sooner rather than later.  At the moment of writing this blog, I have not heard back.  The next thing I did was restart working on the talk I was putting together for the target audience I thought I would be speaking to soon.  If not that one, another, and so I went back to work.  I spent a good solid ninety minutes working on my slide deck, adding and changing things as I worked through the material.

I made that sound easy, and to some, this will be a point of contention.  Here is my thought on it:  Get Back To Work.  If yo have never heard Jocko Willink’s mini speech know as “Good”, watch it here.   Again, I’ve been here before, and I do not deter easily.  So of course anything that you have done before is easier after a few practice runs.  So I have calluses of sorts for this kind of proverbial kick in the teeth.  Get up, dust off and get back in the fight.  There is only one guarantee when it comes to pursuing something that you want, and that is the guarantee that quitting will ensure it will never happen.  And that was not an option for me.  I want this, whether in this exact format or something similar somewhere else.  So I got back to work as soon as I was ready.

So of course the question for you is, how can you develop these same calluses?  What can you do to become more resilient for life’s inevitable curveballs?   Simple:  Do stuff.  I know, laughably simple advice, but sometimes that is the best.  By trying anything new, you are at risk of messing up, stumbling, looking stupid.   Perfect, do more of that.  Get used to the fact that everything takes time to be good at.  Get used to the fact that you will end up in the dirt on occasion, that things won’t go as planned nearly as often as you’d like.  Deal with it.  Get used to it, through repeated exposure.  It like getting a good base tan for the summer, you don’t do it in one shot.  You build up layer after layer of the exposure and then at some point you reach the goal.

I am not sure I can share much more detail than the above.  This is something you have to do on your own and earn the calluses to make the next roadblock a little easier to tolerate.  Practice makes you better, even getting better at coming up short and dealing with it.

Exposure is the key to tolerance.

I wish you luck in your endeavors.

Related Posts

View all
  • This one is tough to swallow, but you need to understand something…life is not fair.  That is a universal truth that we all learn too late in life.  Some of us are born into abject […]

    Continue reading
  • I am beginning to really like British Author George Mack, and this quote is an excellent example of how he sees the world.  I love his insightful and slightly askew look at the world.  For […]

    Continue reading
  • I thought this was an interesting way to remind you that the perspectives, beliefs and habits you have are the sum total of your life experiences so far.  It is easy to think that most […]

    Continue reading
  • I love this quote from Chris Williamson on the Modern Wisdom Podcast, and I have become a huge fan of his show recently.  The full quote, which is actually from the Rick and Morty cartoon […]

    Continue reading