Grit and Gratitude

I read an article recently that compares the hero’s journey to our own journeys when we are attempting to reach a compelling goal. We start off with a seemingly insurmountable task, need to slay many dragons along the way (or pirates, as I like to call them), the tension mounts as we get closer, we feel defeated and want to give up at regular intervals, but we persevere until we reach our goals. I have linked to the full article below.

The hero’s journey, when put that way, sure feels familiar. I have stretched myself more than I could have ever imagined over the last couple of years. First, I set out as a non-sailor on a sailing adventure with my family, experiencing both physical and emotional discomforts along the way. I consistently slayed my pirates along the entire journey. Now that it’s over, I look back and realize that I accomplished my goal and got past my pirates by simply persevering because of a compelling goal in mind.  I just had to do it. I stood with my grit.

My latest stretch has been writing my first book, getting it published, and now launching it on June 4. I have slain many pirates along this path as well, and I continue to do so. Although I believe with every ounce of faith that my message is one that needs to be heard, my pirates are shouting: What if the book is an absolute disaster? What if no one cares what I have to say? What if the writing is terrible and readers don’t even get far enough to hear my message?

I will stand by my grit knowing that I am on the hero’s journey of life, with my own compelling goal being this: I must be heard. I must share what I know to be true.  My book’s message:  You must learn to slay your own pirates if you are to reach your own compelling goals.

My grit got me endorsements from big names (Neal Petersen, Diane Selkirk, Joanna Strober, and Brian Tracy), and a sponsorship from Pirates Booty for Book Expo America (where I will be autographing at booth #377 on May 30 and 31 and handing out over 500 snack bags of Pirate’s Booty!). With my compelling goal as my backdrop, I achieve little successes along the way, until I get to the end of this particular story.

But it’s not just the grit.  I could not have done what I’ve done without the kindness and generosity of those who have helped me along the way, like my book endorsers and my sponsor. It has me believe in the genuine goodness of people and the willingness of most to help others out. I am so grateful that so many have willingly helped me along the way.

I realize that it’s also gratitude that keeps me slaying pirates. My family has been on the journey with me. I have many friends who have regularly asked me how it was going and gave me encouragement and support daily. And I’m grateful for getting to do what I love.

Where to go from here on my own hero’s journey? Once a goal has been reached, we are changed for good. We have grown, and become bolder to take on the next challenge.

Read the full article referred to above:  http://greatergood.berkeley.edu/raising_happiness/.

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