THE DISCIPLINE TO STRUGGLE
“Project yourself 5 years into the future. Now look back and tell me what you want to see”, I tell myself. Was the struggle worth it? If you haven’t made a dime was it still worth it?
Projecting myself into the future makes me think clearer about the current situation and realize that it is indeed temporary—change will come one way or the other and the future will come.
I think about what Samuel Clemens said, that you will be more disappointed by what you didn’t do than by what you did do, when you look back at your life. I find this to be true for me now, at this point in my life. I don’t want to feel this way in 5 years. Life is struggle, why should we expect anything less. Is struggle bad? Struggle makes us better doesn’t it?
“I try to balance the thought that I have to be realistic with the thought that I must be bold”
I try to balance the thought that I have to be realistic with the thought that I must be bold, and make sure that my being realistic is not me trying to be “safe”. It is a difficult thing to manage life and the future and in deciding which road to take in life. I’ve worked years struggling to develop my art. I look back at those years now and they are actually warm thoughts though they very hard then. I hope I look back at these years with favor. I indeed had to be disciplined much more than inspired, as I do now, and it’s not easy.
“Without the discipline to struggle I cannot succeed”
So I will say to myself again, “struggle is a good thing”. Without the discipline to struggle I cannot succeed. I want to embrace the struggles—in my art and in my life. Struggle can derail my efforts or it can make me more determined and this seems to me a personal choice.
Image: Better Than Before 40×30 acrylic on canvas MTMcClanahan