Neil has something I refer to as Farmer Grit. Any Olympic or Professional Athlete would have this as well. Advocates of change. These people display consistent Champion behavior. Chip Brim once defined a Champion and I have always remembered and loved his definition:
Doing the things you don’t want to do, at a time when you don’t want to do them, so you can do the things you want to do, at a time when you want to do them.
In my mind, in order to have consistent Champion behavior – the kind that can get you to the Olympics, the person has this deep inner grit that just keeps them going, no matter what. It’s what makes Neil pile on the layers of clothes that are heavy and make movement difficult so that he is warm enough to go outside and work on the farm after he’s put in a 10 hour day at his regular job. He has a long term vision and despite the fact that he does not feel like going outside in the snow and wind he does it anyway.
I think a lot of us are doing things throughout our day that we’d rather not be doing. I’m not sure I know anybody that doesn’t wake up tired and wish they could cuddle up in the warmth of their blankets a little while longer. I would much rather play cards, visit, watch TV or do just about anything than wash dishes after supper. Farmer Grit goes deeper than that. It’s when you don’t have enough sleep, your body is bruised and tired and everything aches because you pushed yourself the day before, you have your period and a headache, you’re emotionally spent because you had a crappy day at work, fought with your kids/spouse/friend/pet or witnessed trauma and you still manage to pull yourself together and go do that thing that you don’t like to do, because you know it will allow you to do what you want to do later.
I’ve always felt like I lacked this grit. There’s a number of changes I would like to make to my day to day life that I have failed at time and time again. And I’m not failing because of lack of confidence, or lack of knowledge, or lack of understanding of the long term benefits. My weight is one example. I know exactly how I should lose weight. I’ve done it. But I give up and quit. I wouldn’t even say I quit because things got hard. Often, I quit when things are easy. I’ve got my menu figured out, recipes figured out, shopping is easier because I have a plan, meals are easier because I’ve got a plan. I just get bored of paying attention to it, because it still requires some level of attention. I quit because I like change and seeing most things through to the end requires you to stick to the same routine over a long period of time.
This cycle of failure can be really frustrating. I get mad at myself, yet I do it again. I wonder what others have that allow them to push through. I wonder if I’m just lazy because I know I have all the tools, yet I don’t succeed. I’ve let myself down and sometimes I’ve let others down. This is a pretty vulnerable share for me. The reason I’m sharing it is because I want you all to know, that through it all, I’ve never mistaken these repeated failures as a lack in my worth. Neil is not better than me because he’s got this Farmer Grit that I have yet to figure out. He might be better at that skill, but it doesn’t make him a superior human being. These failures don’t mean that I’m not capable or lack confidence. I know that if I really want it I will keep trying until I figure it out. I know that if I don’t have the skill to achieve that goal that there’s places I can go or things that I can do to gain that skill. All I need to work on is my desire. And that’s part of my personal journey and it’s OK! You hear me? It’s ok! I’m not settling for good enough. I may quit “things” but I don’t give up on myself! That one is non-negotiable.
God Bless you all!!