I’ve been thinking a lot lately about mindset and perseverance and hard work and cutting ties. If these things don’t seem related, I assure you, they are.

When You've Come Too Far to Only Come This Far

Original photo byJohn Salzarulo

I’m not quite old yet, but I’m not so young that I can still claim that descriptor. I feverishly apply products to get rid of crow’s feet, but haven’t found many gray hairs. So know that I probably know what I’m talking about, but I may also be full of shit.

I’m a late bloomer by nature, and I don’t put deadlines on things. Honestly, life throws enough of those your way, so I don’t think it’s a good idea to give them to yourself. And while all the minutiae of your daily life can be frustrating, while there are obstacles in your path, while the immediate relief of calling it a day will feel amazing, you should keep going.

This doesn’t apply to relationships that no longer serve you.

This doesn’t apply to books that don’t deserve to be finished.

This doesn’t apply to Whole 30, because bread and cheese are gifts.

This doesn’t apply to day jobs that suck out your soul.

This doesn’t apply to things you’re making yourself do just because you think you need to.

This doesn’t apply to a lot of things. Sometimes you have to cut and run, and I invite you to look at your life and figure out where cutting and running is a good thing. Remember, you don’t get a medal for sticking it out. You may, however, get a bunch of regret upon your deathbed for all the time and energy you wasted.

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But that’s not what I want to talk about today.

Let’s talk about that little thing. It’s a golden light in your chest. If I were to crack your sternum open with a crowbar, it would shine, blinding everyone.

Let's talk about that little thing. It's a golden light in your chest. If I were to crack your sternum open with a crowbar, it would shine, blinding everyone. Click To Tweet

We all have it. Sometimes you can feel it when you’re in the presence of the right people. It’s your energy. It’s your life force. It’s your have to.

Basically, it’s what you’re meant to do. It’s the path your on. It’s the trail your life is meant to wander.

It’s worth noting here that there are a lot of people abandoned their path a long time ago. Imagine how light you would feel if the only things you did were go to work, come home, pay bills, and repeat. Imagine if you had nothing else to do or any real reason to exist.

(It’s also worth noting here that abandoning the path is a lot like knowing what casts the shadows on the wall, but then stepping back into the cave to watch those shadows for the rest of your life anyway.)

This is a reminder. Or it’s tough love. Or an acknowledgment. Or maybe I’m calling you out. You’ll read it how you’re meant to read it.

Your light is there for a reason.

You have to follow it. And that’s going to be hard. There are obstacles. There is hard work. But you’ve come too far to only come this far. To pack it all up now is an exercise in sunk costs.

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And while I can’t promise you that anything will ever pay off, that isn’t the point, is it? You can commodify every aspect of your life, worship at the altar of capitalism, and be fairly compensated for your work.

But you can never be compensated for the light. It’s worth too much. And the only way to get any return on investment is to let it keep burning.

Do it for the practice.

Do it for the process.

Do it because the muscle memory won’t let you stop.

Do it because the outside validation doesn’t matter that much anyway.

Do it because you haven’t been yourself in a really long time.

Do it because you’ve already come this far.

When you’ve come too far to only come this far, it’s a shame to let that light go out.

When you've come too far to only come this far, it's a shame to let that light go out. Click To Tweet

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