As we move through the theme this week, I believe you will see the subject today more and more as a reality. I know we all like to read a story with the happy-ever-after ending. Well the truth in life is there is often no “happy-ever-after;” there is only success before the next challenge.
This past week I was able to accomplish something I have wanted to do for years. The first time I ever looked at doing this was in 2005 when my friend Bobby offered me the use of his Harley to take a road trip over my summer break. Immediately, I looked at riding the old Route 66. I wasn’t able to do it then but this week I was able to finally complete part of it. I ended my ride in Oklahoma and have now ridden on Route 66 in every state it runs through. In a few states, I have actually ridden all the miles of the road that are left. And, you know, I’m excited to know I have reached a goal, that I’ve completed something I wanted to get done.
While on my journey I was able to ride from St Louis, Missouri to Oklahoma City with some bikers that I met on the way. I was able to share the ups and downs of this journey with them. They just decided to take a vacation and ride Route 66 from Chicago to Santa Monica. They wanted to stay off the interstate and ride the two-lane road for as much of the trip as they could.
Now, while this sounds fun, there were some times of trouble along the way. We faced three days of rain and that made it very uncomfortable to ride. It also made it hard to find the road sometimes, as the old Route is pretty obscure in many places. The bottom line is when you want to make progress towards a goal in life, you will face challenges getting to it. You must prepare for them.
I spoke to a group of women tonight and told the story of Rocky Balboa in the last Rocky movie saying life is about how many hits you can take and keep moving forward. His son in the movie has been talking about the challenge of living in his father’s shadow. And his dad, who was a famous boxer, is now running a small Philadelphia restaurant.
In life right now, I am facing the major challenge of getting all of my life organized the way I want it. At the same time, my mom is facing challenges of making ends meet while fixing up her house to put it on the market. My brother Jim is also facing troubles just keeping his head above water. My brother Ken is facing the challenge of not finding a job, but continuing his education. My daughter is facing a challenge of dealing with health issues that she cannot seem to get the upper hand on. We are all trying to make a better way in this world. We do not just lie down and give up.
I talk each day with people who want to get advice from me on how to get through obstacles that are preventing them from reaching a goal. Well, we will all face these obstacles. But I’m sure some of you right now are saying “If I was not pushing forward in my life I wouldn’t have obstacles like this. I want to go back to the days where I had nothing like this to deal with.”
I used to listen to a speaker in Philadelphia named Frank. He would speak about problems of life and say if everyone put their problems in a bag and dropped the bag in the front of the room, after opening three bags of others’ challenges, problems, or obstacles, you would be searching for your own bag back because they wouldn’t seem so hard anymore.
Truth is, if the rewards in life were easy, everyone would have them. You choose to chase a dream, a life of greater purpose, or to reach for higher goals. Well, you have been given a set of obstacles that will bring you to that point. When you have reached your goals you will see that if it were not for those obstacles you were given and had to jump over, then the very dream you have reached would not be possible.
So today I want you to be thankful for what you have been given. Start by taking a look at each obstacle you face and start looking for ways to solve them, just like solving a puzzle. I stopped watching regular TV a few years ago, but while staying with a friend, we noticed one TV show that made you think. It was the now-famous franchise of TV shows called CSI. There was a crime puzzle being solved in every episode that you watched. Well, think of whatever obstacle you are facing like you would see on these TV shows. Think of solving your problem in the same way they solve the mystery. Find a way under, over, through, or around this obstacle and learn from it. Today I will give you a guarantee you will have another one after you solve this one so make it a learning part of your life.
I hope you grow to great places in your life. And I hope you learn from those obstacles that are put in your way. I hope they make you stronger as you face the many other obstacles you have coming. So when you see the reward beyond the obstacles, do you now see the great benefit of going through them?
I’m Tim Gillette, the Rocker Life Coach. It’s time for you to Live the life you always wanted, by Loving what you do and who you share life with. Let us know how we can help you become the RockStar in your world.