The other day, I ran into my friend, an incredible and artful rock climber who has been trying to break into a grade of climbing that is far beyond what most human beings can achieve. And yet, in his attempts to succeed at his goal, he says he is “failing” over and over. These “failures” are making him more and more frustrated, to the point where climbing isn’t fun anymore.
What’s funny is that it is also final exam time at school, and all around me, students are frowny and tight shouldered about the possibilities of failing.
In times like these, there is such beauty in pressing pause.
I tell my students every day to look out the window at the mountains. Together, we look out at the grandeur and the beauty that is solidly there. The snowy peaks. The contrast of the bright blue sky. Can you even believe it? This is where we get to go to school.
Pause: How can we enjoy the journey to finals?
Pause: How can my friend enjoy the journey to his climbing goal?
He was not convinced. He said, “I think you and I are just different people, Georgi.”
I said, “Maybe so. But you know that old story about the couple that keeps trying to have a baby and can’t get pregnant and they keep trying and trying and trying and then they get frustrated and give up trying and THEN they get pregnant?”
He said, “Yeah…”
I said, “Maybe it’s time to stop trying so hard to have a baby.”
He said, “So what you’re telling me is to forget about the baby and just make love.”
I shouted in joy, “YES! OH MY GOD. BEST. QUOTE. EVER. YES.”
Forget about the baby and just make love.
No, it doesn’t matter if you don’t have someone to sleep with! This is not about sex.
This is about you. This is about your life. This is about how frustration is a choice.
Who or what are you so committed to being frustrated about? Who or what keeps driving you crazy? Who or what are you staring at so intently that your eyes are becoming blurry and red?
Try this: Forget about it. Go make love.
Focus on the love in your life. Do what makes you happy. Take a nap. Meditate. Exercise. Eat something delicious. Think about all your accomplishments. Think about the thousands of things you have to be grateful for.
Pause: Look at the grandeur around you.
I could wave a wand and my friend could be the best climber in the world (Did you know I was a wizard?). But guess what? He would hate that. Why? Because he didn’t earn it. He didn’t take the journey.
Whether we realize it or not, the journey is the best part.
Enjoy your journey. Every day, be grateful for this day. Love on yourself. Find more things that give you joy. Connect with people who make you happy. Look around you at the gorgeous tulips, the budding trees, the shining sun, and all the beauty of nature presented at no charge to you. No charge to you every day!
You are working hard. I am working hard. We all have goals and dreams we want to achieve. And yet, here’s the thing: when they start to feel more like painful aching frustrations, it’s time to take a breath. Or a few hundred breaths. I’m not kidding you, you really might need a nap.
When you wake up, find more things to appreciate about where you are right now. Focus on the good. Enjoy the journey. It’s the best part.
Beautiful reader: Forget about the baby and just make love.