Punch Life In The Face

The following guest post is from Steven Severson of HundredGoals.com. After reading his post, please visit his site and consider signing up to receive his free content.

Disclaimer: I am not writing this article as a way to insult people or imply that I am somehow superior to them. I am writing this as a way to share my life journey in hopes of inspiring people to accomplish their own goals. Am I better than anyone else for the things I have done in my life? No. That is not what this is about. It is about making changes in order to become the person you hope to be. It is about being proactive in your life to make those changes possible.

When the going gets tough, the tough get…no, that’s not reality. In reality, when things get hard people quit. They give up. Instead of breaking a sweat, shedding a tear or losing a little blood they take the easy route and do nothing. It is easier to accept defeat & tell yourself that it is too hard, that you aren’t smart enough, you aren’t pretty enough, strong enough. For every inaction we find an excuse that will suit our situation. Hell, we may even convince ourselves.

It is time to stop making excuses. It is time to quit being a quitter. It is time to get off your ass and do something with your life. Yes, you might struggle. You might feel pain. You may even cry but if you don’t do something with your life why are you even here? It is time to start living. It is time to stand up and punch life in the face.

Too often we accept our lives the way they are, even if we aren’t happy with them. We are miserable at work, our relationship with our spouse sucks, our kids hate us, we waste our time doing absolutely nothing. Our joy in life is derived from a bottle; we can’t even relax without a glass of wine to settle ourselves. This is our life and it sucks.

When I was 16 years old I was a loser. My life was consumed with drugs and alcohol. If I wasn’t high or drunk I was in the process of getting there. Two days after I turned 18 I was arrested. I had just gotten high a few minutes before being handcuffed & taken to jail. I spent that night in my cell thinking about where my life had gone wrong and how I was going to change it.

I realized that I was screwing up my life. It wasn’t only the drugs and alcohol that were the problem. I was wasting my time. I couldn’t turn the clock back and recapture those years. They were gone and there was no getting them back.

In order to change my life I had to turn my back on everything and everyone. This was hard for me. It meant losing friends. It meant making major changes in my life. I had created a lifestyle for myself and people expected me to be that person. For a while I struggled to get sober. I didn’t want to disappoint my friends when they wanted to get high with me. Eventually I came to realize that I needed to change my life for me and not live my life as a consequence of other people.

Once I figured this out I made the changes I needed. I quit drinking and doing drugs entirely. I have been clean for almost 9 years.

What does all of this have to do with you? Maybe you don’t drink or get high but I have no doubt that you are wasting your life with things that are just as stupid; video games, television, Internet, gambling, celebrities, work…anything that takes time away from the person you want to become deep down inside.

It is so much easier to do nothing than to do something. If I hadn’t been arrested and had the time to sober up and reflect on where my life had come and where I was going maybe I wouldn’t have changed. I wouldn’t have traveled around the country and now the world. I would probably still be sitting in my bedroom taking hits from my bong and eating Milk Duds watching the world move around me.

Get off your ass and grab life by the balls. Do something that you’ve always wanted to do but have told yourself you “couldn’t,” for whatever reason. Stop lying to yourself. Life will go on with or without you. Just remember that you can never make up for lost time. Never.

Note from Frugal Dad: One of the greatest things about blogging is forming friendships with other bloggers like Steven who have overcome so much to lead successful lives. For me, their stories are an inspiration, and a reminder that none of us have to be victims of our circumstances.

Comments

  1. amen! No one is in charge or your destiny except YOU!! I hate when people whine and complain about how many lemons they have in life, and just sit in their lemon crate feeling poutie.

  2. Well done, Steven. This reminds me of what Dave Ramsey calls: “gazelle intensity,” though perhaps yours is even stronger. There’s a reason why over 50% of America is overweight or morbidly obese and the average household carries $15,000 in credit card debt, and you’ve hit it squarely. No more excuses, no more “but’s”: just get over all of that and make things happen.
    Again, thanks for sharing some motivational thoughts.

  3. THANK YOU FOR THIS…

    I’m printing this out and putting it in my motivation journal. I’m in the midst of making some major life changes along with training for a marathon (somedays I do question my sanity lol) and this is just what I needed to read today.

    By the way congratulations on 9 years of sobriety. That is awesome!!!!!!!!

  4. The first part of your story reminds me of the saying, “Everywhere I went I was there.” That’s why fighting back is so important. If my lousy attitude and actions are everywhere I go, then not fighting them eliminates victory, or even the chance of victory.

    I agree. It might be easier to do nothing than to do something, but it isn’t more fulfilling or rewarding.

  5. I don’t think there’s anything wrong with TV, video games or the internet(how I make my living). These things are OK in moderation, but it seems people no longer take the time to make lasting relationships, eat right or exercise. We’ve become so mobile and fast-paced we no longer “have time” to do these things and many people are suffering as a result. But I agree, no one can change you but you. Great article :)

  6. Thanks Steven for sharing this with us & to FD for posting. As a newbie sober person, I’m now learning how to stand up, suit up & take life on life’s terms. Damn, no nore drinking, drugging myself into Whiner Mode…Time to be a fully functioning human, feeling sorrow & joy every day, making decisions, sometimes not great, but at least moving forward in life, instead of looking at it from the bottom of a bottle.

    Thanks for this reminder that I’m on the right track for me!

    JayBeeNOLA

  7. I must be on another planet because I don’t hear many people complaining on a day-to-day basis. The one person who you’d think would complain (newly disabled husband, two small kids) doesn’t. If anything, I feel like if I say anything less than cheery I’ll be letting people down. Then again, I live in an upper middle class neighborhood and these are my neighbors I’m talking about.

  8. YES! YES! YES! I am right there with you – all the way – 110%!! The entire country needs to read this and act on it! Life is to damn short to let your life be miserable. One of the last nuggets of advice my Mother gave me before she died was “Enjoy life – just enjoy it!”

    Congrats on your nearly 9 years of sobriety – this November will be 10 for me. Life is good. :)

  9. Kind of like the verse in Proverbs that says something to the effect of “in all labor there is profit” and goes on to say that the fool has lots of grand plans but doesn’t take any action while anyone that at least does something anything and works hard then there will be at least some profit in all kinds of work/action.

  10. Steven, congratulations on your accomplishments! I hope to pursue my dreams and become as accomplished as many of the bloggers associated with Frugal dad.

    I almost always feel different from most people out there. I never got caught up on drugs or alcohol. I don’t even remember the last time I had a drink! I have always tried to figure out where I should be going. I wish I would have been able to figure it out earlier in life, but I have no regrets.

  11. Thanks so much to everyone for their positive comments. I’ve been concerned that people might interpret this article in a way that it was not intended; as an attack against them or a way for me to toot my horn but I think everyone “got it”.

    Congratulations to everyone who has become sober in their own lives, I know how challenging that can be but I can also say that it was worth every day of struggle.

    I hope to see you around on Hundred Goals! Keep up the good fight!

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