• Joseph

how surfing can inspire our lives

if you complain about conditions, will that help you flip the situation?

I often hear discussions about all the things that make things not work. ‘The world is full of large evil organizations and the music industry is full of crap and artists can’t make money because of capitalism!’

‘It was much better years ago when businesses and people did not have to cope with so much change!’

Somehow the entitlement trap, captures us as we believe that the world should be naturally all equal and fair.

But complaining about how things are now and moaning about how they should be instead, won’t help. It simply won’t really solve anything.

Could you imagine a surfer getting to the beach and complaining that the weather is shit? Perhaps she approaches the beach one day and finds the water almost flat, and the beach is full of other people swimming and trying to surf too.

Would complaining make it better?

Does this make you think of someone in your life complaining about how the world works?

I hear so many people getting emotional about how the world has changed. There is always an external factor that is making it so hard to succeed in XYZ field. I.e. Facebook changed its algorithm so it’s harder organically to reach more fans; there is too many other people who play the same music so it’s hard to get gigs; customers don’t buy your service / product because you were too early or too late or the government hasn’t given you enough money; nobody reads your blog because Google makes SEO so hard...the list can go on and on.

So let’s think about this metaphor:

If you want to surf you got to get on the waves at the right time and be able to ride them to make it work. And that needs preparation and persistence.

Some days, there is no right time at all. Some days, it’s full of waves, but they are small and the sea is particularly crowded so you just don’t get the chance to surf much.

Some days, you just missed the big wave. Some days you get it too soon, or too late and you can’t properly ride it.

Have you ever seen an amateur surfer managing to ride a huge wave perfectly the first day they hit the beach?

How does that relate to what you do in your life? In your journey, you are like a surfer, your peers are like the other surfers competing for the same waves, the marketplace is like the waves and the weather.

You should learn how to master the skill to ride the waves properly, but ultimately, you still don’t decide how waves and the other surfers behave. Shit can always happen.

The pros don’t complain about external conditions, as they understand there is no point. They perfect their skills indefinitely and adapt. Sometimes they wait hours to be able to get to one single good wave. They try and try and they do their best when the right moment comes.

They learn how to surf with smaller waves first and they scale up the level step by step. They train body and mind consistently and learn on the field by doing mistakes.

They try over and over. They may struggle for years while they try to make it work (also financially). They find a beach and when this does not work anymore they change beach. They have persistence to work day in and day out.

They enjoy the grind because that’s their life.

And this is the point. We can spend energies and time complaining and being discouraged from the lack of success and failures some days... or we can fucking go to the beach every single morning and with time learn how to make it happen.

Pic credit: Aravindan Ganesan https://www.flickr.com/photos/arvind7069/)

This is just my metaphor of my way of seeing things, perhaps that resonates with you too. And I wish you can have your pro surfer mentality for your own thing. And enjoy it!

Love you, young surfer.


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