I would if I were you – a Word about the Discipline

Dear reader,

sometimes people say to me they envy me – my work, all my travels, my looks, my grades, my home, even my cat … saying things like: “Oh if I were you, I could do so many things, but I just can’t. It’s too difficult. I just.. can’t. You have it easy – you have everything. I wish I was so lucky”.

Well, sure, I have a splendid life, thank you. On the surface maybe. But what you see is only a top layer, you don’t see the long hours I’ve spent mastering a certain skill, you don’t see days of reading, doubting, worrying, you don’t see all the way I had to walk to get me where I am. And you don’t see that I’m never standing still, never resting on my achievements.

I used to be a professional ballet dancer. Not a very good one, but good enough to be in choir of the National Ballet Theatre. I’d spend at least 3 hours a day practising (weekends included). The same moves over and over, until perfection (or injury). I used to play violin. It took me several years before I could bring the melody out of the instrument without sounding like cats in heat. It really was 10% talent and 90% of work. And by that I don’t mean work for fun. It’s really hard work that you don’t always like, nor you always have the right moods to do it, but you do it anyway. You don’t see the results, but you go on, keep trying in hope that you might get just a little better than you were yesterday.

Then I grew up, went to the university and became lazy :).

Now what I do, not for a nice figure, but to stay in shape because I sit a lot, is I run. Several times a week. Not every day, but mostly. In any weather condition. Not much, a couple of miles, but enough to be really sweaty in the end. I do that straight out of bed in the morning at 6 o’clock – do some yoga warm up exercises and then I go. So often it happens that I’d rather stay in bed and cuddle a bit. Or I’m really tired and just can’t get out. Or it’s raining. Or it is too dark/wet/cold or I’m running late because the alarm clock didn’t work. So many excuses EVERY SINGLE TIME! Want to know the trick? I don’t listen. At least try not to listen (do fail at that a lot, otherwise I would tell you I run every day, and that’s not true). And as soon as I put my sneakers on, the excuses fade away and I feel really proud for being strong enough to do the right thing. Then usually I step into some mud or manure or I twist my ankle, but still, it feels good.

So if today I’m good at something or I have something, I had to work to get that. There is no such thing as a goal achieved fast and easy without any efforts. Or at least not a worthy goal. You might look for some comfort in adverts promising to get you happier, slimmer, healthier in no time, but they’re not real. Sure you can nowadays simply buy many things, even things like a degree, trust, etc. But deep down you know these things have no value. The most valuable things you own, you earn by trying really hard to obtain them. And when you do, you know how much they are worth in terms of self-respect, pride, reputation and last but not least, these things last. Even if you loose a job, home or someone harms you, you know you can do it again. All over if you have to.

So no reason to worship or be jealous. You can do it too. If I can, so can you. If you fail or the result is not coming or revealing itself instantly, you’re not alone in this. I am too.

roze

… to believe in tomorrow (A. Hepburn). This picture is from my garden – I’m still learning how to take care of the plants and these flowers were the only thing that survived this year. Not much, but good enough to be a perfect motif for today’s post.

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