Sometimes in life you look at things from a different angle and it can make more sense. It’s just a matter of perspective. You have a world full of both optimists and pessimists. When you are an eternal optimist like myself, it can be grating to be around a “negative Nancy” pessimist. In the alternate scenario, the pessimist probably looks at optimist’s and feels like saying “what the hell are you so happy about!” I look at life optimistically. When one door closes, another door opens. I know plenty of people who look at it as the door just closed! Wow, that sucks! In no way shape or form am I going to try to convert a lifelong pessimist to be an optimist. I will let those folks sit around listening to The Cure or Morrisey while they lament about how unfair life can be. It’s not like I am going to wake up every day and listen to Bobby McFerrin singing “Don’t Worry, Be Happy” every day of my life. I have my rough days too as do all who share the optimistic outlook regarding life. What I realized a long time ago is that life is a grind! Sometimes you end up doing the same thing every single day to the point that it feels like Groundhogs Day! I ran a very successful personal training business for 20 years. I could pretty much tell you where I would be and with whom on any given day. Sure the conversations were different, but it was same people, same time, same channel. That is how you make a successful business. It may appear to be loosely structured, but in reality, it was on point as far as scheduling.
I like variety and spontaneity as much as the next guy, but it isn’t always that way in life. I look at life as one big grind. Sometimes it feels like you just have to grind through the day. I have been lifting weights for 32 years and I love training but there are days I don’t want to do it, but do I lay in bed or skip the workout? No, I go grind my way through it the best I can. Most days wake up with some pep in my step, but there is the odd day that I wake up and feel like hell. Again, I could just cancel my day and do nothing or I can grind through it. You see, Grinding is what tough people do when things don’t go smoothly. I have had exams where I felt ill prepared and yet I succeeded on passing it because I took the attitude that I just needed to grind through it. I may not have kicked its ass, but I needed to get by it and by grinding, I did. Grinding is really a life philosophy. It’s the ability to say, screw the odd’s, screw the uphill battle, I will succeed. It’s standing in the face of adversity and flying your middle finger right back at it. It’s never giving in or giving up on yourself or your dreams.
The great thing about the grind is anyone can do it. It just takes some backbone and some fortitude. It’s having the courage to punch back when life decides to kick your ass. I hate allowing myself to be beaten by circumstances I can control. If I can’t control it, then I can live with it. Why? Because I heard the Serenity Prayer since I was young due to alcoholism in my family. God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things that I can, and the wisdom to know the difference. If it’s something in your control, you can grind through it. If it’s out of your control, why bother? I look at my friend Joshua Rucker, and he epitomizes the grind. He defies all the odd’s to even be here with us. To see him go out and do what he does physically is remarkable. Just watch this remarkable man. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GrFIB0l9rkE I feel blessed everyday to have what I have because of our friendship. Sometimes all it takes is to understand that we all face the grind, some of us just face a bigger grind than others. My friend, my brother in iron Joshua, faces challenges makes my grind look puny!
Life boils down to two certainties, you will live and you will die at some point. Everything you do in between is what defines the grind. Like I said yesterday, some people seem to be born with a sun sitting over top of them daily, never rain clouds. I submit that these people are ill prepared when it comes time to have to do the grind. It’s been said that “Scars are tattoos with better stories.” I fully believe that. Getting hurt provides the types of lessons that leave lasting impressions, we like to call them scars. They can be scars you can see on the surface or the ones nobody knows are there on the inside. How did you get those scars? By facing the grind, by facing life. Life doesn’t stop, it will literally run you over and grind you down in to rubble if you don’t keep moving. Being static isn’t normal for humans. We are made to move, we are made to grind. I embrace the grind when it’s time, because fighting it is fruitless. It’s like the song by Motorhead Don’t Let Em Grind You Down. I love this verse.
People gonna make ya wonder if you’re right
Keep ya wide awake and worried late at night
Why don’t ya tell’em to beat it
Why don’t ya tell’em to eat it
Just a bunch of clowns
Don’t let’em grind ya down
My Mother used to tell me it doesn’t pay to let people rent space in your head. I never really took it to heart until the last few years. Why obsess about things you cannot control? How many people walk these streets daily thinking life or someone did them wrong. My Pastor at church said it best “Bitterness is the poison you swallow everyday hoping the other person will die.” So profound in it’s simplicity. You kill yourself letting that person occupy your head, to swallow that poison called bitterness. You know what I say? F’em, why worry about those people. Just a bunch of clowns, don’t let em grind you down. So when my back is against the wall, my response is not to cower in fear, I come out swinging and I grind through my battle, no matter how big or how small. I love how my parents raised me, even if I never understood it at the time. Life present you with challenges and opportunities to grow, to change every single day. To truly live life, to maximize your potential, you need to be able to grind. You either embrace the obstacle and grind through it or you sit idle and let life grind you up and spit you out. When you wake up tomorrow and things aren’t going your way, just remember the saying #rise and grind. That’s how you get through the day. Until next time, keep on grinding through all adversity.