“If you find yourself asking yourself (and your friends), “Am I really a writer? Am I really an artist?” chances are you are. The counterfeit innovator is wildly self-confident. The real one is scared to death.”
― Steven Pressfield
Today, as I woke up again at 5am and sat myself to write, I found myself struggling with a topic as I haven’t written in a while. It is indeed annoyingly frustrating because one thing about doing something daily is that you start to become good at it, and the frustration that comes with starting, vanishes. Right now, however, I’m struggling to come up with something that can help you in your day, but hey, I guess we all have this problem so let’s see what is the best way to make our way through it.
I believe that true work is done in the very first hours. I’m not referring the first hours of your actual job, but the first hours in a morning that you’ve decided to wake up early, those hours that you can fill with whatever you like, whatever creative endeavor you’ve had in your mind for a while but haven’t pushed through. It can be learning a new language, writing, creating videos for youtube or simply reading.
When you wake up early, you fill your time with meaningful work and that is the kind of work that is needed. It’s almost like a test, if you want to live, eventually, from the thing that you like doing the most, you have to put the work in it.
Waking up early to work is not easy, it requires willpower and mental effort, but the rewards are infinite in comparison to the regret that can be felt at the end of everything for not giving ourselves even the small chance of leaving something of meaning behind.
Getting good at being uncomfortable
Just as Steven in the beginning quote and myself starting said, it’s not easy, obviously, you are scared of whatever it is that you are trying to achieve, success is never a guarantee. But what we have to understand is that it doesn’t matter.
I do not know if I shall make progress, but I prefer to lack success rather than to lack faith.
It is not up to us whether our work will be great or not, what is up to us is to do the best that can be done given our situation. To focus solely on what is under our control, the rest doesn’t matter.
Sitting down to work or do anything of meaning will require a fight against comfort. It’s that simple, and that fight must be fought constantly. This is why the feeling of uncomfortableness must become the new comfort.
There is always an excuse for not doing meaningful work. You will always be able to find a reason for not doing what you know you should be doing.
- I’m too tired
- I don’t have a degree
- I don’t have a camera
- I am too old
- I am too young
There are always excuses. Notice how there are lots of “I’s” there. It doesn’t help to put the problems on yourself.
For example, My body and mind are tired, what is there to be done about it? Maybe have a quick nap or maybe become comfortable with being uncomfortable and do the work anyways. Always remember that the obstacle is the way.
Meaningful work isn’t easy, it requires courage and determination, the truth is that almost no one does what he wants to be doing in life.
Be the exception.
Stoic answers aim is to provide answers to the deepest human questions, which sadly, are almost always never asked.
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