This morning I woke up with the catchphrase, “No pain, no gain” circling. I swatted at it, like a gnat. It arrived yesterday and it’s evidently going to circle, just above and out of reach, until I confront it, deal with it. It’s like a turkey vulture lazily catching the wind currents as it spirals over a possible target.
I haven’t the time to actually write a post, but writing a post is what I must do if I want to be able to focus on my actual to do list, the rest of the day. Setting a timer to write this post within a specific, limited timeframe creates extreme frustration and irritation – but, deep down, I know that is precisely the whole point of this emerging awareness, this ‘simple thought’ that has been holding me hostage : No pain, no gain.
I’m beginning to realize that, in recent months, within the realm of things I can control, I have been creating a life in which I have little exposure to pain. In one sense, that is a wonderful, healthy place to be. Generally, humans arrive pre-programmed with exceptional sensors and warning systems that help us avoid actual physical or psychological pain and suffering.
However, once our most basic needs are met – such as health, food and shelter, sleep, and a sense of safety – we generally have a natural longing for more. If the foundation is stable, it is quite normal to become aware of and to desire the things, the feelings, further up Maslow’s hierarchy of needs pyramid, such as a desire for belonging, self esteem and self actualization.
From my new, healthier vantage point, I have arrived at a gentle ‘ah ha moment.’ There is a ’price’ for those things, those feelings that I desire. They won’t just flutter down from the heavens like pixie dust to settle upon me. They are there, they are within reach…but they do not come to me. I must do the reaching. I must stretch.
And, therein, is the clear choice I now grasp. Obviously, many many people learn this at a much earlier age…but, no matter. That I am finally getting it?, before it is too late, is what is essential.
No pain, no gain.
I want to climb the pyramid. In fact, I want to get all the way to the top. And my growth and fulfillment muscle is…evidently… an actual muscle that’s going to help get me there. It requires regular use to stay strong, stay limber. Remaining only in my comfort zone, as I have recently been doing…I am feeling that muscle beginning to atrophy before I even begin the climb. I can’t let that happen. I won’t.
I will set my own circuit training course. I can build stronger structure, create urgency and deadlines, form accountability bonds within or outside of my existing support system.
Without many external forces exerting the necessity to do things out of my comfort zone, to truly push myself to my limit and beyond, I choose to do that to myself, for myself.