That’s right. I said it.
I know, I know! You’re used to the OTHER sayings, “When times get tough, the tough get going” and “HUSTLE HARD!” Yeah, yeah. I get it. I’ve heard the songs. And while I don’t necessarily disagree…let’s expand the phrase into an actual conversation.
“When times get tough, the tough get going” is a great phrase for working out. Or pushing through a tough situation. Mental motivation to motivate the unmotivated. But if you are honest, most of your life is not made up of tough, rubber-meets-the-road, go-hard-or-go-home moments or decisions.
No, more often than not, you have just regular, human, low-to-moderate difficult moments. For example, unless you have underlying medical issues, it’s not really ‘tough’ to get out of the bed. The action of sitting up is not an overbearing obstacle. Even for those who still need a bit more ab work, the ‘rolling-and-letting-gravity-do-the-rest’ technique is still very effective. No, it’s the internal struggle. You don’t WANT to get out of bed, because you don’t WANT what comes after. You get up to a life every day, made up of the same people every day, doing the same things every day, which makes every moment seem ‘tough’.
And when times get tough, the tough get going, right?? And you ARE going. Grit on your face. Day in and day out.
Day in…and day out.
You spend so much mental and physical energy doing the mundane. Because the regular, human, low-to-moderate difficult moments…all feel like “rubber meets the road, go hard or go home” moments. So you are always stressed, always have to try soooo hard.
Even to get out of bed…
If that’s not working out for you, maybe it’s time to add a new phraseology (wait, that’s a WORD? NICE!)
When times get tough…do something else.
Look, no matter what path you decide, there will be difficulties. Things will go wrong. Efforts won’t bear the fruit you were expecting. And that’s the case even when you LOVE your life. But those moments are harder to take when you find absolutely no value in what you are doing. So far, your approach has been “the tough get going,” so you go even harder in the life you dread. Which makes the effort to hustle hard…even harder.
You don’t need more effort, my friend.
You need a dream.
Dreams are strange things. This thought that what doesn’t exist yet, can exist. A dream is an audacious concept. Dreams only happen in the unconscious. With no effort at all, you’re able to interact in the world of your subconscious, making things happen that you wouldn’t dare speak of while awake. Because that seems too tough.
See where I’m going with this?
Toughness has its place. But wherever you are placing your toughness, make sure that toughness is worth the effort. Your obligations are your own. You are completely responsible for what you decide and don’t decide to do.
So you could just keep pounding away, carving out a life you aren’t really interested in and probably hate passionately…
Or, you know…
You could just do something else.