Delimit My Life

"Life is either a daring adventure or nothing" ~ Hellen Keller

Archive for the tag “impossible”

Handstand challenge progress (1 week)

handstand

As part of my challenge, I have been trying to do a handstand walk. Of course, everyone has to learn how to walk before they can run, so I have been focusing on learning how to do a handstand. This involved watching numerous online videos but, in the end, nothing helps more than actually trying it. Let me say when you are used to walking around feet down it’s a strange feeling trying to do the reverse. Starting off this challenge, I thought that doing a handstand would be impossible, and yet, one week in, I am starting to think differently. I was sick the past week but I kept working at it. I couldn’t last long enough to do any harm anyways.

My progress has been slow and steady, and I keep surprising myself with little improvements. My first method was to position my back towards the wall and then slowly walk my feet up into a handstand. My arms would be screaming from the awkward position, but my wrists hurt the most from the new pressure I was placing on them. The only way I could practice, without killing my wrists, was to space out my attempts to once every few hours.

My second method, I was actually scared of trying it, was to face towards the wall and kicking up into a handstand. My roommate laughed at me for being scared so, to prove my manhood, I did it. I just felt like I was flipping my back into nowhere, but I have since learned that it is pretty easy. With practicing every day, I have been incrementally getting better and my balance has ever so slightly been improving.

I have actually gained a fair amount of strength in my wrist, and I can use them more easily when trying to maintain my balance. I’ve learned that my weight needs to be balanced in the middle of my hand, using the force of my fingers and palms rather than solely on the wrists. Similar, to the way I would not walk on my heels because it is much harder to stay balanced. This took me awhile to grasp since I have only recently had enough strength in my wrist to try it. Overall, this past week has been primarily focused on improve my wrist strength.

As of now, I have been able to do a handstand without the support of a wall for a little over three seconds without losing it. Yes, the improvement may be small but relative to zero, where I was, it is infinity! Plus, this is improvement over one week. One week in which I could not practice for long periods of time due to my physical limits. I can only imagine where I will be by next week. With more time and practice, I know I will be able to hold a handstand for much longer.

It always seems impossible until its done. ~ Nelson Mandela

Day 16 Know Yourself

Yesterday, I passed the half way mark on my thirty day cold shower challenge. The showers pretty much feel amazing now and I enjoy the new level of energy in the morning. However, I am even more ecstatic that I have kept up with my blogging promise, tackling my fear head on! The writing has been challenging and often frustrating but I have no regrets. It has given me the opportunity every day to think about something important and take the time to articulate my thoughts. Making me realize how thoughtful reflection gives me a clearer perspective on my life.

Consequently, I have recognized that I have become pretty comfortable with my cold showers. I do not fear them anymore so my comfort zone has expanded. This feels great because after finding a limit in my life I have been taking the steps to break past it. However, I want to delimit my life which means I need to figure out more limitations. I have been thinking about this since I started this blog and I haven’t found that many yet. I think it is because most people, me included, hide their limitation from themselves, denial being their biggest friend. So when trying to think about my fears, I freeze up and go blank. No one actually wants to admit they have fears at least to themselves. When I read about the cold shower challenge, I came face-to-face with a limitation, forcing me to confess my fear. Of course, I could have told myself a bunch of lies but I did not. I realized that I could never see myself taking cold showers for thirty days straight because at the time it seemed impossible. Now half way there, I know it’s possible and I feel crazy for ever thinking it wasn’t.

This is bad! Okay so you may be wondering why. It’s complacency, simply being a human means falling into this trap. Once you reach a solution that adequately solves a problem no further improvements will be made. So as I become comfortable with my cold showers, I will eventually fall back into a habit of not challenging myself. There is a similar problem with artificial evolution. An organism can only become as complex as the environment it lives in will allow. Thus, if I am going to continuing growing I need to add more complexity. Not in the sense of having a complicated life, simplicity is great, but in finding new challenges that will push my boundaries! In order to do this I need to understand what I fear and what I think is impossible!

This will of course take some time so my challenge is to find one limitation for the next ten posts. They will then be placed in my delimit list along with a challenge to get past them.

  1. Acrophobia, I have an irrational fear of heights. I get anxiety/panic, dizzy, and my hands get clammy.

The first thing you have to know is yourself. A man who knows himself can step outside himself and watch his own reactions like an observer. ~ Adam Smith

Day 2 A 4am Cold Shower

I had a very early flight today so I had to get up at 3:30am. Not that it’s hard getting up early but in no way does the idea of taking a cold shower sound pleasant. As far as I am concerned, if you have to wake up early then you shouldn’t have to freeze to death. Still, I accepted the challenge so I will see it through, even at 4am.

The shower seemed surprisingly colder than it was the day before. My body started shivering almost immediately, and I had to really focus on breathing normally. A nice benefit, if you could call it that, because there is probably nothing better than an icy shower to shock you to life at 4am. It gives you a feeling of strength and vigor, not physical but mental, that just can’t be equaled.

I started sharing my challenge with a few friends and their reactions could easily be identified as hysterical, even borderline defensive. Basically, they couldn’t understand why I would do this in the first place. They of course love hot showers and were willing to defend this stance to their grave. To them, the idea of a cold shower is plain crazy. Although, isn’t that the whole point to do something that most people wouldn’t even consider!

I started Delimit My Life to prove to myself that the impossible is possible and to find the limits that I have placed in my life. I fully understand my friends’ opinions because people tend to fear discomfort. We grow up trying to minimizing any and all discomfort in our lives, but to what end? Slowly our lives become full of limitations and fears which gradually make us dull and complacent. Such a life shuts the door to anything that might be challenging, difficult, or even new. This challenge may seem ridiculous, even pointless, but why not? The best journeys start out by doing something ridiculous and then turn out to change your world.

Nothing is impossible, the word itself says ‘I’m possible’! ~ Audrey Hepburn

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