I love stories of those who have overcome incredible obstacles to pursue and accomplish their dreams. I find extra inspiration in the stories great physical feats because when I read or hear them it I nearly always have the thought that if this person can do that thing then maybe I really can do this thing, particularly since this thing isn't likely to be swimming 110 miles or climbing the worlds tallest mountain or solo skiing across the south pole.
For me this thing is finishing my BA, learning to sail, hiking Maine's 100 Mile Wilderness with friends, becoming a better dancer or living in a yurt for a year. Compared to swimming through night and day in icy cold, jelly fish and shark infested waters my goals seem rather safe and tame. I might lose some sleep studying for a mid-term but I'm not in immediate danger of hypothermia or having my toes nipped off.
I will still however have to struggle with self doubt or questioning if the (time, effort, money) is worth it. I am quite sure I will face moments where I just want to put things off or give up entirely. I'll think I'm too old or too tired to make it. I hope if my thoughts turn that way I will think of something Diana Nyad said in an interview with CBS This Morning:
"It doesn't matter ... what you come up against because none of it's going to be pleasant. You're hardly ever out there going, 'Oh, my God, isn't it a beautiful moon tonight?' The crew is feeling that. But you're kind of suffering through the whole thing. So my thought was, 'everything you come up against say -- and this is why people are relating to my story -- all of us suffer heartache. All of us suffer difficulties in our lives. And if you say to yourself 'find a way,' you'll make it through."