The cyclical waves of progress
Having one of those weeks (or so) where I feel like I can’t catch a break.
The politics, the temperature outside, all of the work and effort required on so many fronts just to keep moving forward is slowing me down to a crawl (and it’s only Wednesday.) Physically, my body is tired and exhausted and isn’t responding my regular regiment for recovery which includes whiskey, baths, and sleep. If I can’t maintain my sleep and my health all else tends to spiral down with it.
Things rarely move as fast as I predicted, let alone the speed I was hoping for in the first place. It’s often hard to not feel pretty discouraged and as a byproduct distracted. Particularly on a day like to day, where for no reason, in particular, you feel like the universe is conspiring against you.
An idea that I think about a lot and often keeps me encouraged and tempers my natural instincts to give up is based on what I’ve penned as “the cyclical waves of progress.”
The basic premise is that the better things get, the worse they will be. But, on the bright side the worst things get, the better they’ll be. Often the intensity of the wave is matched on either end so if it’s “awful”, then soon it’s going to be “excellent.”
For example, when I’m having a good day and things seem to be going better than ever. When the sun is shining, and my lady, baby, my partners, our team all appear to be in excellent spirits, when we’re landing new customers, and our work is looking better than ever, I beam and my ego becomes nice and full like I can conquer the world I always like to keep in the back of my head that some day in the future (sooner than later) I’m gonna be feeling the opposite. As good as I feel today, one day soon I’ll have an equal portion of hopelessness and despair. I find comfort in this ideas, and I think it keeps me grounded and prepared as the tides eventually change.
Then one day like today, I’ll wake up and feel as though things aren’t going as I planned, I’ll feel frustrated and stuck, we’ll have lost an opportunity, or in my overextension of responsibility I will have fumbled the ball, and I’ll feel sad and hopeless… and suddenly I’ll remember that the shittier things are today the higher I’ll rise in the next wave.
It’s a simple idea, but on some days this light at the end of the tunnel is the hope that I need to persevere and keep putting one foot in front of the other.
To be honest, I have no idea why things work like this. I see similar patterns in the natural rhythms of nature like the constant changing of the seasons and how things like trees are continuously blossoming than dying, while they are growing the entire time. Or the tides of the ocean (or lakes) and how they rise and fall, but you can always count on waves rolling into the shore. Maybe this is just a natural rhythm of living?
I like to think that you can’t have one without the other and as the pendulum swings, the change keeps me humble and happy. But, as long as it motivates me to keep moving forward, that’s what I am going to do.