“I’m gonna train this son-of-a-bitch lizard brain to not take it personally when I’m rejected. From anything. Into the fire over and over until I stop feeling the burn. I might end up as Godzilla, and I’m perfectly cool with that,” I resolve angrily.
“What?” I ask. “What’s so funny?”
“You’re adorable,” he says.
“I don’t know how to take that,” I say.
“Let’s just focus on the next walk into the fire, okay?”
Skyspook is the Mothra to my Godzilla. He takes the long view and wishes for peace while I throw rocks at Ghidorah and roar impotently — and I love him for it, so very, very much.
The next time I’m burned, I wail, “I JUST WANT TO BE GODZILLA!!!”
“I know,” Skyspook says, “You ARE Godzilla…but you’re baby Godzilla. Need to grow up a bit before you get the radioactive fire and lightning breath.”
He is right, although I don’t like it. I head back into the fire.
The next time I’m burned, I roar and ask myself, “Does Godzilla stay on the ground crying when a helicopter shoots him? No, he springs back up, roars like the stuff of nightmares, and keeps knocking buildings down.”
Sometimes it’s tough to see any progress. Especially when I’ve got my tail stuck between a high rise and a parking garage. Or when the National Guard shows up. Or that A-hole King Kong. (That guy, what is his problem? I’m telling you.)
But you know. I’m more like Godzilla every effing day.
The Process and Results Are Different
When you’re working towards a goal, you can often feel like you’re making no progress. You struggle. It’s annoying. And a lot of times you give up.
But if you stick with it and push past that wall (easier said than done, right?), eventually you start to see results.
Which should be encouraging. Key word here is “should.”
But then you’re struck with another minor crisis: Are these results enough given the amount of effort you’ve expended?
You may find yourself downplaying your victory because it seems so minor to you.
- “Big freaking deal. I lost 3 pounds. I have 100 to go.”
- “Well, I made it through his first overnight date with my new metamour without completely self-destructing, but I don’t know how I’m going to keep doing this.”
- “I only had 3 meltdowns this week.”
- “I should have this conquered by now. I’ll never make it.”
The wall you hit? That wall is a sign that what you’re doing is difficult. It’s a normal part of the process of being challenged. It has no relation to whether you can or should do it. It just means you’re being challenged.
If you aren’t challenged, you don’t grow.
It’s a lot like going to the gym. If you’re working your muscles and upping your activity level, you’re sweaty, weak, and exhausted after a good session. Maybe even sore.
If you take this as a sign that you’re not cut out for exercise and you quit, you’ll never get in peak shape.
But if you keep going, you’ll often find that your fatigue gets better, and you’re able to do more.
On the same hand, if you push yourself too far, you can actually injure yourself. So it’s key to listen to your body, consult others with more experience than you. Learn. Try. Learn. Try.
It’s no different with your mind. Or your relationships.