"The obstacle is the way." I get how annoying that sounds, even obtuse… and if I tell you it comes from the Stoics, even more so somehow. There’s an element of ‘should’ and ‘not enough’ – “pull yourself up by your bootstraps”, “get it together”, “get over it” - Ugh!
To the wounded, and the veterans of life’s harshest ways, it’s not what we need to hear, at all.
Just ask anyone with PTSD… not helpful.
…but let me put a different slant on it, something I missed at first, something that might be useful to you.
I've been butting my head up against a brick wall. I'm sure that sounds familiar. :) I was trying to make something work that just wasn't, for all kinds of reasons.
I've been wanting to do two things at once, for a long time now. I love coaching. I'm good at it and when I'm coaching, time seems to disappear, and the people around me see a smiling person emerge afterwards.
On the other hand, I have a bigger vision, a dream to help people live their dreams on a much larger scale. So I made a website and called my business The Dreamer's Caravan.
But it didn't work. It had split focus. I wasn't getting anywhere near the sort of numbers I needed to change the world! Over and again, my childhood friend's words came to mind, "You've got to start somewhere, Simon" and other advice "Do not despise small beginnings (Zechariah 4.10)."
It reminded me of my mother's vegetable patch. Not enough soil to go round. The result? Small vegies & in my case, I stalled like a single propeller airplane, pointed at the sky.
In free fall, I took a Masters degree to teach English as a second language. I don't really like teaching and I'm not really good at it.
When I finally looked at things objectively, accepted the 'what's so', I saw that I needed to simplify things.
And that's where the annoying quote comes in. Rather than banging my head against a brick wall, the wall became an opportunity. I just had to see it that way.
That's not an easy thing to do, but if you bang your head long enough... Haha :D
The opportunity was to simplify things. Good for me, good for people I might be able to help. Win-win.
The obstacle was the way.
There's a guy I've admired now for a long time, Nick Vujcic, who has plenty to say about such things. Coming form him, it carries more weight and less 'should'.
The guy has no arms and no legs and he's amazing.
His slogan? Obstacles = Opportunities.
Worth listening to.