Today morning a friend’s messenger status said “Great pleasure of doing thing what others thought you can’t do”
Well, quite true. I always enjoyed pleasure taking challenges. Challenge had been my motivation many times. This challenge need not be posed by a real person always. Often its the challenging task itself, as if it is laughing at you and telling that you can’t handle me. A mathematics problem stands in front of your eyes and mocks at you. Or a difficult client consulting assignment which cannot be handled using known wisdom. Its the pleasure for me cracking such tasks, mathematical problems or assignments.
Since childhood, I have never cared to anything what others had to say about me. Thanks to my father who always taught me self confidence. Though I had never given anyone chance, that others would tell me that I can not do something; be it academically or otherwise. Hence for me doing things what others thought you can’t do, did not mean real pleasure. The greater pleasure lies in doing what you thought you can’t do.
In 1997 after my SSC exam, I went to my first trek in life with few friends who had done some trekking earlier. I had always wanted to go trekking. This trek was to fort of Raigad, once captial of Ch. Shivaji. Trek was very simple that time, simplest way was to climb some 1000 steps. There is one section of fort known as Takmak point. This point has a steep cliff/ mountain face and winds are quite strong around this place. I remember I could not go near to the cliff. I was sitting some 50 meters away from the cliff waiting for my friends who had great time near the cliff. I was, infact I am afraid of heights. I realised I can’t trek. In 2000, I got another chance. I applied for month long Basic Mountaineering Course in Manali. First few days it was like torture I was doing to my own body. They taught us many things including rock climbing, rapelling, basic survival techniques, etc. Only at the end of few weeks I started enjoying it. I was making more progress since then, and at the end of course I felt proud of myself!
Since then I have done a number of treks. Trekking has taught me strength of mind over body many times. There were treks where I thought I should run away (1, 2). I cant continue any long. Why am I trekking? People had also asked us what is the point of giving so much pain to the body to get to the top of mountain. Most of time we start our trek, we look at the mountain and think, this mountain is unclimbable (3). I thought I wont be able to climb this, and these are the climbs which I enjoyed the most. Most pleasure came at the end of trek which I thought I should run away.
Another fear I tried to overcome is blood. I faint on seeing blood or on slightest of injury. I have tried hard to overcome this thing, but however brave I am, I have fainted number of times. Often it happens at subconscious level. I have tried to find some medical reasons for it. I believe it is some syndrome, where when I see blood or injury, my blood vessels contract. This contraction leads to reduced blood flow to my brain, which causes me to faint. After a history of such fainting cases, it has established as a fear. I have tried to deal with this through blood donation. First time I donated blood, I fainted. But every time I kept donating blood. I had been donating blood 4 times a year, till quite recently (14 Nov, 14 Feb, 14 May, 14 Aug). Everytime I donated blood I had a pleasure, not because I was doing some philanthropic task, but I defeated myself.
It was the same pleasure when I completed my first half marathon. I always wanted to run a marathon. In 2000 I had run 7 kms for my hostel. I was on bed for few days after that. I told to myself running is not for you. But people around me, Ravikanth, Sameer and Satsang inspired me and kept my dream alive. After 9 years, I reached half way of my dream. I still think, full marathon – 42 kms, is a task I might not acheive. But I am ready to wait another 9 years to disprove myself, because now I know the amount of training I would need to complete full marathon.
If you had to fail, it would be because of none other but you. We create mental blocks for ourselves which act as hurdles. Challenge lies at overcoming them, going at a level further; there is more pleasure and life on the edge. Greater pleasure lies in doing what you think you can not do.
Don’t limit your challenges, challenge your limits (-anon)
(1) read Adi Kailash,
(2) read Cycling – Harihareshwar/Srivardhan
(3) read Durg-Dhakoba descent via Kuthedar Vat