When we do hard things, we learn about ourselves and the world we live in. When we do hard things, we get stronger. When we do hard things, we can take on bigger challenges if we just keep our eyes open and learn.
This month, I was worked on a hard thing. I was working on finishing up the last of my high school work. I didn’t meet my goal, but I learned that energy is more important than time, most things are better if you don’t cram them (especially math) and adjusting quickly is important.
I did things like decreasing the time I was sleeping to get to work earlier, not taking breaks, etc. I learned that having a lot of time and no energy is the same as having a lot of energy and very little time. Not much gets done.
I had tried to focus and finish just one subject at a time which didn’t work for two reasons: 1. I got burnt out. 2. Algebra II. I need at least two things to do, or else I will get sick and tired of the main thing I’m doing. And Algebra II is something that cannot be rushed too much, for me at least. I could have probably finished by the end of the year, but I needed to start much earlier on Algebra II. Even just a problem a day since June would have helped me a lot.
My first plan of single subject cramming didn’t work, which I had tried for about a week. I spent the next week not doing much of anything because my plan didn’t work. Then I adjusted and started doing well in the third week. Did I get everything figured out? No. Did I find a system that worked a lot better? Yes. If something doesn’t work, try something else. And don’t waste two weeks on something that doesn’t work. I am not advocating jumping between things every couple days, that doesn’t work either. The point I would like to make is that when we fail, we have a tendency to wait too long before getting up and trying something new. We should keep track of what works, and do more of it. On the other side, we should keep track of what doesn’t work and stop doing it.
Do hard things. Get sleep and rest. Manage energy and try things to see what works for you. And if you fail, adjust and try again. To quote Seth Godin, “If failure is not an option, than neither is success.” We need to fail, and learn, and try again and again and again.