Delimit My Life

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

Archive for the tag “improvement”

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

Advertisements

Day 28 Growth happens over time

tree-growing-o

Every day, our society is becoming more instantaneous to our every need. People want everything now, not later, and we won’t wait for anything. No one has the time or patience to wait around for results or progress. This is the reason for quick fixes, “x days” for anything. It’s impossible to search online without finding something about losing weight, learning a language, or building muscles in some short amount of time. However, how often do those quick methods ever work? The simple truth is that growth happens slowly, incrementally, which makes it’s hard to comprehend.

Growth can be represented as a tree or a plant. If correctly maintained every day, it will grow, slowly and steadily, but to the naked eye it will seem to stand still. Gradually, you may see new sprouts appear which signifies visible growth. However, for the most part, the growth is unseen until substantial change occurs. Eventually, the tree will get taller and stronger, and you will recognize the growth. Even comment at how well it is progressing, but then the growth will be invisible again. Next, the tree may bear fruit and everyone will notice the different. They will celebrate the wonderful bounty. Though, like most things in life, the fruit will become common and cease to be interesting. Still, the tree will continue to grow and change.

There is no difference from anything we do in our lives. We grow slowly with possible quick strides forward, like the sprouts, but it takes time. Yet, we continue to believe that we can lose weight in a week or a month. It took time and energy to put on the weight and it will take the exact same time and energy to take it off. The problem is that people don’t see the slow weight gain, they only see the substantial change, tree trunk got bigger. This is why we love the before and after photos so much. We gawk and marvel at the difference because it is so significant, but we lose focus on how much time it took. So, we work at it and make small improvements which people commend us for, but the praise soon fades. Then most people get frustrated and quit, falling back into old habits. The solution is to think about progress like a tree. Every day make a small change, fractionally small, and over time they will add up to a significant difference. Progress can only be made through continuous effort.

The issue with fears is that they are not visible. Progress is hard to see because they are internal to everyone. I can’t simply look at a before and after photo of me conquering a fear. No, the mind adapts gradually. and one day you realize, suddenly, that you are not afraid as you once were. The fear that used to haunt you is gone. So, why is there no quick fix for conquering a fear in “x” days online? People have written tons about facing fears and they break the problem down, exploring possible solutions. In the end, there is simply no proof of the fear. If I show you a photo of me skydiving and I say “I was scared of heights” then it’s on faith that you believe me. For this, I see writing as the solution.

Most people write after they have conquered a fear. It makes sense because people want the answers, instant gratification. However, I think they are missing a large part of the story. Like watching a slow motion film of a blooming flower, I see writing as a snapshot that can be assembled into a complete story. One that gives the audience that initial fear and the slow progress that the writer makes towards conquering the fear, but this is just my philosophy on Delimit My Life. I want to give a complete story of what it takes to conquer a fear!

Strength and growth come only through continuous effort and struggle. ~ Napoleon Hill

Post Navigation