**If you would like to listen to this blog post, scroll to the bottom for the audio version.
I’m in the river right now.
I am swimming hard to get to the other side, but honestly, I feel like I’m getting nowhere.
What river you ask?
Well, the river of misery.
“You aren’t supposed to be miserable! You just started this coaching thing full time. Most of your time is spent at home and with your kids. What do you have to be miserable about?”
Yes, I have many blessings. That is for sure. But it doesn’t mean I am not miserable sometimes.
Guess what? I actually embrace my misery.
If any of you live in a northern region, you know what I am talking about when I say the “river of misery”. See, here in Minnesota we have COLD and snowy winters. They are MISERABLE. You will find a few people that may actually enjoy wintertime, but for the majority, we dread it.
Why do we live here? OUR SUMMERS ARE GLORIOUS!
Have you heard that Minnesota is the land of 10,000 lakes? These lakes come alive in the summer. There are so many fun and wonderful things to do in them. Plus, most days are mild and hardly ever extremely hot (if they are, the lake feels amazing). Yes, we have a few mosquitos, but we manage just fine with them around (at least we don’t have rattlesnakes).
You should see our autumns, too! They may be short, but they are gorgeous! You wouldn’t believe how many red, orange and yellow hues there are. And the weather is perfect for corn mazes, pumpkin picking and apple cider.
Ahhhh. It relaxes me just thinking about it.
We Minnesotans go through the river of misery every winter to get to our glorious summer and gorgeous fall. Often, we remind each other and the people who don’t live here why we suffer through the dreaded winter.
The river of misery is our largest obstacle to the end result we most want.
Same goes for you, friend.
I bet you have a goal in mind. There is something God is tugging you to do next. But you are in this little puddle of mediocrity. This puddle is familiar, but you have this nagging feeling that there is something more. But to get to that something more, well, you have to wade through the rushing, raging, swirling waters of the river. That just doesn’t look very fun.
That’s where I am at right now. I’m in the river. See, I was in this little puddle of mediocrity before. I did my coaching on the side and it was growing slowly as I still worked my part-time job. Finally, I decided to go all in and quit my nursing job. It was exciting to jump into that river at first. Then it started to get deeper, faster and a little more difficult to keep moving the direction I wanted to go. That’s when I realized I knew nothing about running a business, writing a blog or marketing. Yes, I knew how to coach, but the rest of it is tougher than I thought.
But here is the key to any sort of success. You can’t turn around and get back into the puddle of mediocrity. I mean you could, but you won’t get to where you really want to go. If you really want to accomplish a goal, you HAVE TO GO THROUGH THE RIVER.
Here is the good news. The river has another side. It ends at some point. It doesn’t last forever. Just like we Minnesotans know winter will finish and we will get our summer.
And the God of all grace, who called you to His eternal glory in Christ, after you have suffered a little while, will Himself restore you and make you strong, firm and steadfast. 1 Peter 5:10
So, I suffer for a little bit.
I can learn how to run a business. Luckily, I have a VERY sweet friend that helps me edit my blog. Plus, the more I do it, the better I will get. I can take courses or hire someone to get my marketing done. This is only temporary (until I make another goal and jump in the river again 😉).
Once I acquire these skills I will be more confident and equipped in whatever God calls me to tackle next. Each time I wade through the suffering, I know God is molding me, making me ready. But I have to allow the struggle so I am fully prepared to do whatever he calls me to next.
Most of my clients want to lose weight. I love when they come to me and essentially tell me that they want this weight loss to be quick and easy.
It doesn’t work that way. Right away, I make it clear that they will have to cross the river. I also let them know it is only temporary! Once they cross that river with me, they won’t have to go back to the puddle of mediocrity that they were in before. That’s the beauty of not taking short cuts, allowing the struggle and taking your time. You won’t go back to that same puddle. There may be a new puddle, but at least it won’t be the one you came from.
The more you are aware of the temporary misery, the more bearable the misery will be. You can shift your focus on the dry ground and spend less time wallowing in the current. You may look back at that puddle every once in a while, but you’ll know it’s not worth the trek backwards.
So, jump in the river with me! Let’s wade through that misery together. Once you have suffered a little while, you’ll find yourself stronger, firmer and more steadfast.
That’s a pretty awesome place to be!
Brothers and sisters, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus. Philippians 3: 13-14
Do you need a nudge or someone to wade that river with you? That is actually a great idea! Sign up for a FREE 45 minute coaching session with me and let's explore your next goal together. Click here to sign up.