They kick you when you're up
I was speaking to a friend the other day and he told me something that really resonated with me. After going through his goals and getting really geared up, a load of hassle came his way. Various random things that he had to deal with just popped up out of nowhere. By the end of the day he was feeling worn out, and we were joking that the Universe was trying to see if he was really determined to succeed.
Stream of Noise
The more I thought about it though, the more it occurred to me. These random events are always happening to you. Every day, every week, stuff just happens, good or bad, that you have to deal with. It's only the fact that you have goals at all that you're even aware of it.
The idea is that without any direction we get knocked around by random events in our lives. Every time something comes along and derails us, we just change direction, speed up, slow down etc. You just shake yourself off and start moving whichever way you happen to be facing.
When you start focussing on a particular direction, you realise how tough it can be to maintain a constant speed and steady bearing.
The science of slacking
I've always liked the word entropy, it sounds very sophisticated, but its also quite small and easy to pronounce. Amazingly enough, it's also quite interesting to boot. My take on it is that there's a very powerful force in nature that's compelling you toward a simpler form of existence, which is usually disorderly (messy, untidy and unmanaged, its easy to get into those states isn't it?).
Brian Tracy calls this the E-Factor or expediency factor – the tendency to do fun and easy things rather than important and difficult things. I think it sums up not only the struggle to become a better person, but it also highlights the most unique quality of humanity that differentiates us from all other animals. Our intrinsic desire to improve ourselves, to grow, to do the difficult things first and get the rewards much later.
So next time you're browned off..
Give yourself some credit, there's a lot stacked up against you when you decide to walk a specific path. My belief is that at some point, you eventually build up enough momentum through your own dedication and connections with others that you don't feel the small knocks and bumps along the way. All it takes is patience and courage, the other other 'c' word.