Must. Harden. Resolve.

Me, occasionally.

Me, occasionally.

I’ve written that in my journal a few times lately. “Must. Harden. Resolve.”

Honestly, it’s strange to write, because it feels like it goes against what society at large advocates for today.

Do what you love… Go for it… Follow your passion…

The books and articles eschewing these beliefs are too numerous to count. We often don’t get past that initial motivating sentence, though. What we don’t see is that the vast majority of people who are successful have worked their butt off for what they have.

Doing what you love is a really great thing. Believe me. I’m not saying anything contrary to that. But I also think that these new norms are having an unintended consequence for my generation. We’ve gotten a little soft…mostly on ourselves. I think we need to toughen up a little.

The problem, as I see it, is when laziness interferes with the things we love or care about. I thoroughly enjoy writing. I like the feeling I have as I’m writing, and usually have some kind of inner satisfaction when I’m done writing. I enjoy getting feedback on my writing (I’m bein’ honest here, folks). The problem is that I’m sometimes just too damn lazy to actually do it. In that sense, I need to toughen up, and have the discipline to just do what I love doing. It seems a bit of a paradox — why should I need to “make” myself do something I enjoy? — but it’s true nonetheless.

Another example (they are many): I like the feeling I have when I’m running. I like the way my body feels when I’m done running and I can feel myself breathing hard. I like the satisfaction of knowing that I’ve pushed my body, even if just a little bit. I like the way I feel when I eat healthy. But again, sometimes, I’m just too lazy to follow through on these things. It may just be a part of my own personality, but I do think there’s a cultural aspect as well. We live in a new digital world that is quite accepting and often lives by and teaches a mantra of “Do what you want!” It’s sometimes a good thing, and sometimes not.

There are times where we just need to harden our resolve and do something we don’t want to do in the moment because the end result is better for us. It seems like we (and I) have lost that to a degree. We just aren’t being told to get it done or to put in the hard work. Well, some people are saying that, but they seem to get a bit drowned out.

Here’s to hardening our resolve, and doing what must be done. I’m writing this because I’d rather be on the couch reading a detective novel. Now that I’ve written this, however, I’m quite happy that I took the 15 minutes to sit here and process (only slightly, mind you) a thought. With every 15 minutes of doing that, my willpower grows, and I’m able to better do a thing that I love doing.

So get to it. Do the work. Get it done. Harden your resolve.  

Okay, back to reading The Maltese Falcon.