Today, we are continuing with part 3 of our 5 post series, “Life Lessons from the Ocean.”
If you missed the first two check them out here: Part 1: Be Present & Part 2: Adapt. For me, the ocean and surfing has been a teacher in my life, and I encourage you to “listen to your life,” (as Frederick Buechner says) and pay attention to your rhythms and routines and places of joys and challenges to see what your life is trying to teach you.
Lesson 3: Perseverance.
A lot of people see surfing and think…wow looks fun! And if you watch an experienced surfer you may also think…looks easy enough. Yes, it is fun! But it can be sooo hard and often very humbling too! It takes A LOT of work to get good at surfing.
As much as I LOVE surfing, it can also be the most frustrating thing ever at times. Waves just want to beat you down and push you back to the beach. Some days I can’t seem to get a flow with the surf. One of the biggest life lessons that surfing has taught me is perseverance, to push through the pain and frustration in pursuit of the fun and excitement and the rush of another wave. You don’t get the enjoyment of riding a wave unless you push through and stick with it.
Case and point… see this clip from my film Bethany Hamilton: Unstoppable:
Just like in surfing, perseverance is key in life. Let’s be real, life can be so hard at times. Things don’t go our way. There is pain around many corners. Relationships feel distant and pulled apart. Some days, months, years are just plain difficult. We must persevere through the challenging times in order to get to the sweet times. And sometimes the good times are that much better because of the struggle along the way. But how can we persevere?
There are a few things that can help us in our persevering:
A Healthy Mindset. A Plan. A Supportive Community.
Training our minds is so important in persevering. I often think “I don’t need easy, I just need possible” and that mindset has brought me far. A discouraged or negative mindset can kill perseverance in its tracks. Part of a healthy mindset is also a grateful mindset. Whether things are good or bad, I focus on what I’m thankful for and that can be a true game-changer.
A plan is also super empowering in your persevering efforts. A plan, with small achievable goals, can help obstacles not feel so daunting, and give you a sense of control as you work hard through challenges.
A supportive community is key in persevering…and I will talk more about that in Life Lessons from the Ocean – Part 4, so stay tuned 🙂
In my Unstoppable Life Course: Set and Achieve Goals I chat with Marie Forleo about super practical, empowering, and life-giving tips to help you set goals. Setting goals and a healthy mindset are crucial to building your perseverance muscles that will help you through life (and surfing), and a supportive community makes the perseverance journey that much sweeter.