I get it. You’re tired. You’re frustrated. You’re downtrodden.
Nope – scrap that.
You’re exhausted. You’re infuriated. You’re defeated.
You tried. You really, honestly, truly did. You gave it everything. You put in the hours. You made the sacrifices.
It didn’t matter. It didn’t work.
So why should you keep going? Clearly there’s no point – you’ve already given all you had. Now there’s nothing left.
You deserve a break. You need to curl up for a little bit and feel bad and regroup – surely you’ve earned that, at least?
Put. The hopelessness. Down.
When you’ve been giving everything you have, over and over and over again, and the world keeps knocking you back, you can easily start to forget that there’s any other outcome besides falling down. As kids we’re taught to work hard and try our best, and in return we’ll receive the desired results.
But then real life doesn’t work like that. And it takes effort to keep getting back up. When you get back up over and over and over and over, and still the world keeps throwing you back, you start to question why.
Why are you doing this to yourself? You start doubting yourself – your abilities, your purpose, your likelihood of actually succeeding. You must have done something wrong. Maybe you’re not meant for this after all. You should stop now and go after something else – something you have a better chance of reaching.
If this is you right now – do not give in. Don’t lie there and take it. You’ve already proven you can get up again and again – so just keep on doing that. Keep on getting up. Statistically, one of those times you have to stay upright. It’s maths. And the more you get back up, the more you’re turning that statistic to your favour.
And I know, it’s hard. It takes effort to keep getting back up, and you might have forgotten why you keep doing it. But trust me – you started this path because it mattered, once upon a time. You already said you gave this your all – you gave it everything you had. People don’t give everything to somethingif it doesn’t matter – so clearly this matters enough to get up one more time for. That might be all you need! This one more time.
When you’ve been on the ground enough, your view can get stuck down there. You don’t remember how to see the world any other way than from the floor. And it’s soul-crushing down there. Believe me – I know. The world is laughing at you. Playing with you. It promised all these things and made you try and now it keeps on knocking you back.
But that viewpoint is wrong. Let’s say you have concussion – your sight is blurred, you’re dizzy, your survival instinct is getting confused. The world is not knocking you down to laugh at you, or because you didn’t try hard enough, or because you don’t deserve to get what you want.
You’re being knocked down because you’re in the ring. Boxers don’t enter a contest and then expect to just shake hands with their opponent and get their prize. They have to earn their trophy. Otherwise what would be the point? Where’s the skill, the passion, the motivation, the work ethic? Where’s the feeling of elation for winning something you earned?
And you might think that metaphor makes the world seem like your enemy – the world is the boxer you have to beat to win and it keeps knocking you down.
The world is not your opponent though. The other boxer in that ring is your life if you don’t fight for what you want. It’s the mediocrity you’re thinking of settling for. It’s all the challenges and obstacles you have to overcome and find a way around to get to what you want.
Because no one just walks into everything they want without some kind of altercation. Otherwise every single person would have what you want; you wouldn’t want it anymore. People don’t buy seats for a fight where two people step into a square and shake hands. They want the journey. The story. You want to achieve something that feels worth it.
So stop feeling like the world is kicking you when you’re down. It’s trying to show you the right way by leading you away from the wrong ones. Meanwhile, you’re testing your resolve. Your desire. Your conviction to stick with it and not give in until you find a way to win.
Find another way. Get back up. Believe in yourself and in your passion and in your reason for starting in the first place to keep on going. Don’t give in to the doubt. Don’t give in because you’re tired. Keep. Going.
What’s the alternative? Lie on the floor and wallow in self-pity? In what always could have been? When you watch a movie or read a book, you will the protagonist to keep on going. You know they just have to get over that final hurdle and they’ll get everything they ever want. You beg them to try one more time, even though they’re tired, even though they’re beaten, even though they’ve given up hope. You know the happy ending is just one more plot twist away.
So now you need to be that character. You need to will yourself on. The darkest moment usually comes right before the win.
Find a way. You got this.
Get back up.
Don’t give in.