Thought about this during my long run yesterday. I always loved running. It’s a great avenue to destress as well as to generate ideas. Your monkey brain don’t just shut off during such activities.
TSW is similar to the process of training and completion of a Marathon.
You will have to keep running and running for long distances during training, sometimes with no end in sight. Distances keep getting longer, and you just keep going. Every minute you think of how much longer will it be, before it ends. But before you get there, you just have to keep going.
The road is uneven. You will run up slopes, wind in your face, uneven footing or gravel roads that make you uncomfortable. They make you question why you are actually doing this. You will suffer at certain legs of the race.
Then, there are periods where the road is great, scenery is awesome, a slight downslope which you can coast. You get out of the woods from suffering, and get into a zone. You are coasting, enjoying the slight break the terrain has offered.
And then you suffer again, rinse and repeat.
You will see people dropping out of the race, giving up. You will see people driving ahead faster than you. Sometimes you see moments of encouragement, when runners help out one another in offering to pace you, giving you a pat on the back, giving you a race gel to boost your energy and telling you to keep going. Sometimes you won’t get that kind of encouragement through long stretches.
You want to be the person to finish. Not the one to be giving up, when the road gets tough. Not the one who fails to anticipate future difficulties when the road gets easier for you. Not the one who often needs encouragement in order to finish the task.
It is how much you want to finish, your dogged and determined character to see it through. One step at a time. One mile at a time.
Before you know it, you complete. Your body will definitely be worse off compared to how it was when you started. But you will look back and be proud of the process you have achieved.
I’ve spoken to many who are deep in the throngs of TSW. They are miserable. They can’t see the light at the end of the tunnel. Some are suicidal. Being dead is better than being alive.
It is understandable. I’ve been through it.
All I can offer is to help shift their mindset. Stop seeing the light at the end of the tunnel. You will see it eventually, when you get there. For now, take one step at a time. Improve one bit, not matter how small, daily. It is painful, nobody said it was easy for TSW. Just keep going.
Trust me. You will be a completely different person when you reach the end of the tunnel. And then, you will be thankful that TSW was a part of your life and you wouldn’t exchange it for anything in the world.