Thursday, 11 February 2010


I once was told that one can’t improve without taking on challenges. Well, I just had taken on a new job and felt, that for my taste this was enough of a challenge – hence not being really sure what he wanted to tell me.

Much later it occurred to me: Everybody talks about challenges, but nobody says what it means.

Is it something you never did before?

But you might have done something similar, drawing experience from that – this way challenge seems to be closely related to self-confidence. Some people easily draw experience, some don’t.

Is it something you never did before, AND not knowing if there is a chance for success?

That raises the question: Does taking on a challenge mean taking risk? The very people telling you how beneficial it is to take on a challenge might get really nervous when being told that you want to take up horse riding or parachuting. Apparently that’s not what they meant!

Taking on a new job not knowing the consequences is OK. Climbing a horse is not. Although the examples of people having health and financial problems due to wrong choice of work challenge are plentiful, the falling of a horse and getting injured is considered to be the riskier choice of the two, despite of a whole country full of happy horse back riders.

It seems that as soon as you set the challenge, beyond your intention, other people feel challenged by you. Might they be unable to bear the thought that you are doing something that they wouldn’t dare doing, making them feel inadequate, worried or jealous, might they think you lost focus doing something non-beneficial for your life which to an extent affects theirs as well.

It seems that quite often not the challenge itself is the difficult bit – as if that weren’t enough! No, it is the need to override the feelings and anxieties of other people, some of whom we love and cherish.

This is a lonely fight. It takes place in the head and it usually takes place when you need it the least. When you feel your own panic attack rising from this rock hard bit where your stomach used to be, when you need all the strength and sanity of mind you can get hold of, your thoughts dashing through the brain cells to gather the workforce and then all of a sudden this canvas opens on the inside of our forehand, everything goes into slow motion and the faint hallucination of a sorrow stricken face looking at you, as if you were already lying in a hospital bed half dead. And there you are: Fallen off that damn horse!

Told you so!


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