by Darrin Schenck

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by Darrin Schenck

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Life is about work. By that I mean that you need to work hard on yourself, at what you do, and THEN you reap the rewards of those efforts accordingly. If you are a child of a rich family, and have had everything handed to you your whole life, you are not getting the necessary inoculations the rest of us are. Just like training muscles for growth by putting them under tension and stress, your mind and your resolve need the same kind of training. A life of comfort and sheltering from anything stressful or challenging is not a good life. As a parent, you shouldn’t be providing this, and as your own person, you shouldn’t want it.
“Everyone has a game plan until they get punched in the mouth”
Mike Tyson
Very true statement by one of the most dominant fighters that ever lived. You don’t know what you’re made of until you’ve been tested. Whether that is actually getting punched in the mouth, starting a business venture that fails, a sudden breakup in a relationship, or getting fired from a job, you don’t really know how you are going to handle that situation until you are in it. You may have a game plan, but….
I want you to shoot for the moon when it comes to your goals. Keep in mind that it is the work that is key to getting there. On the way to the goal is where the value is found. Let me repeat that: ON THE WAY TO THE GOAL IS WHERE THE VALUE IS FOUND. It is on the journey where you learn about who you really are, what you can take, and whether on not you are on a path that you are suited for. I can say in full confidence looking back at it, that my racquetball career was far more about self exploration that it was accruing trophies and prize money checks. It was the most formative thing I have ever done…sorry public education system, but it’s true. I learned far more useful life skills in my pursuits on the court than I ever did inside a classroom.
If you want to end up partying poolside in Vegas, or taking a private jet when you travel, great, go for it. But understand this: if it is handed to you, it will have no value. It only means something when you struggle, grind and achieve it yourself. Be like a hungry fighter, waking a dawn to run 12 miles as a warm up for the rest of your day’s work. When you rise to the top, don’t lose sight of the hunger and the level of work it took you to get there. It may take more to keep you there. The daily goal is to learn and grow and refine and polish yourself as a person. The wins and losses will come as part of the journey. You need to be sure to take a break once in a while, look around a bit and enjoy the fruits of your labor. But don’t fall prey to the idea of flexing and keeping up with what everyone else is doing. Live your own life, your way, and make the most of it. Plan for the future, because just because you have things going the way you want right now doesn’t mean that punch is right around the corner.
Define your own goals, set the bar, and keep raising your own standards to achieve what you want. Personally, I don’t want to spend any more time in Vegas than required for my day job, but that’s me. Not everyone finds fly fishing as cathartic as I do. And admittedly it took me a little while to learn that too. Figure it out soon; what you really want, what you really need, and map out a plan. Remember, at some point, you are going to get punched in the mouth. How you recover, retool, and adjust from there will determine whether or not you are going to reach the goal(s) you have set. The reward of those goals is not a stress-free, lazy life. That will lead you to both mental, physical and emotional bankruptcy. If you are in the ring, you are going to take that punch at some point. Get up and come back for more. It’s the only way you are going to reach the end goal, whatever your definition of that may be.
That’s how you are going to find out who you really are.

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