It occurred to me today that something I had seen as a strength in myself might actually be masking a weakness.
I've faced quite a few challenges especially over the past few years. At best, you could say I was being taught gratitude the hard way. At worst, it was one hit after another, and after a while, I would auto-switch to survival mode. You know when the gas light in a car comes on and you're still able to drive for a couple of miles before running out of gas? Now imagine constantly running with the gas light on and right before you're completely out, adding just a little more gas to keep going but not enough to turn the gas light off. That is survival mode.
As easy as it sounds, adding some more gas to keep going, is a true test of strength. And once added, having those few extra miles seems like such a big win that the fact that the gas light is still on looses its sense of urgency. And the natural inclination, or weakness in this case, is to adapt for survival. But adapting to having a "little more gas" creates a false sense of security because its only a matter of time before you run out. Not to mention, its not even comfortable because it still comes with feelings of anxiety, moments of hopelessness, continuous struggle... And it definitely never solves the problem completely, it just patches it up enough to keep going even if only at a snail-paced rate.
They say the night is darkest before dawn but this can turn into a vicious cycle of going from evening to night to evening again without actually experiencing dawn.
Sometimes it makes me wonder what if I had pushed a little more? What if I had challenged that "no"? What if I had fought a little harder? What if I had faced the problem head on until I solved it rather than try to find a way around it?
How do you really know the measure of your ability unless you keep pushing its boundaries? What if the stories of greatness we so often hear about are really not that far-fetched? And it takes moments like these--difficult, heart-wrenching, depressing moments like these, to bring it out in us? But glamorizing hindsight and indulging in "what ifs" is pointless. The gas light is still on...
Are you functioning in survival mode? Maybe not all around, maybe just when it comes to a goal or dream of yours? Have you settled for less than what you deserve? Have you faced so much resistance that you've accepted that things just don't come easy to you? Yes, there are some situations beyond our control, but what about the part that you can do something about?
One word--relentless. If you're in survival mode, my guess is you've been running the engine for a while. And every situation is different so there's hardly a formula that could apply to every situation other than being relentless about getting the results you want.
oppressively constant; incessant