Lots of thought this week about motivation, energy, enthusiasm, resolve, fortitude, and also the opposite: lethargy, obstacles, sudden difficulties, unexpected delays, crushing defeats.
I’ve thought about how to maintain the former and minimize the effect of the latter. I’ve considered various voices and strategies that can be employed to accomplish just this objective, to stay on a positive path and make progress towards goals in the face of inevitable challenges.
Boiling down all the good ideas that I’ve come across, one particular theme crystallized for me today. MOTION. MOVEMENT. FORWARD PROGRESS. The thread amounts to one thing: Taking action, doing SOMETHING, rather than freezing up, unable to respond to whatever life brings your way.
If we get into the habit of motion we create our own momentum. Making progress forward of any kind, no matter how small, is the key. That very action is one of the main sources of positive force that will generate all those favorable traits listed at the beginning of this piece.
Don’t get me wrong, there are certainly times for rest, relaxation, reflection, etc. That’s really the dichotomy. We human beings all need those breaks, those periods of recharge for our bodies, minds, for our souls. But when that rest is complete — by circumstance or by choice — the way to kick-start yourself is simple:
Get UP, and GO. Move. Take action.
It’s the very action itself that is important. That’s why exercise or physical activity otherwise is so critical to our overall well-being. It’s therapeutic and healthy and necessary to MOVE. Everyday. Or most days, anyway.
Taking action is also how we work through difficulties. It’s the ONLY way. If you fret and stew and worry and lament you only extend the time you’re in the difficulty. Moving forward is the only way to get through it. If you’re in a slump, in a rut, the response is simple — not easy, but simple — don’t allow yourself to wallow, force yourself to move forward.
As Winston Churchill once put it, “If you’re going through hell, keep going.”
So, get UP, and GO. It’s the only way to live.