Embrace the Thrash

So, here’s the interesting thing about the early days of any visionary journey, there’s a whole lot of thrashing that goes on.

It needs to go on. But most visionaries don’t talk about that “dark” time. Because it’s not sexy. It doesn’t feel good or look good to others. Nor do the great creators tend to get any public attention until after the thrash yields a clear enough vision for them to become unwavering pulled toward a quest. The spotlight loves heroes and legends, not WTFs…

We feel bad when we’re in the thrash because all the luminaries we place on pedestals seem to have their stuff so together, seem to be so insanely focused on the one and only thing that matters. And dammit why can’t we be them? Thing is, those same people thrashed mightily before arriving in a place of mission. And they will again.

The thrash needs to happen. Hiding the conversation around this part of every visionary creator’s epic journey makes those currently in the thrash feel inadequate. You look at your heros and assume “they never thrashed, so what’s wrong with me?” Straight up fiction.

At some point in your journey, you’ve got to create a specific vision to hold in your mind and give you the intention and purpose, something for the Universe to respond to. But you also need to allow yourself the time to do a lot of tinkering, trying, experimenting and messing up in order to even get a sense of what the elements of a vision that is strong enough to fuel unwavering daily action are. And, here’s the scary part, that process can last for years.

The challenge while you’re in the the thrash is to understand:

  • There is great and necessary value in this process
  • Every great creator goes through it, and
  • Inaction is not an option

Thrashing is not about wallowing, it’s about acting, succeeding, failing, observing and adjusting, expecting a lot of things to not work and being okay with that, because it’s the only way to get to what will work. For you, for the problem you seek to solve, the delight you want to deliver and for those you seek to serve.

Instead of hiding it, embrace and exalt the process of trial, error, funk, success, stumble and grace. Own it, and ask for help. And do it with structure, intention, consistency and movement.

Failure is only failure when it doesn’t move you forward. Click to tweet

In the comments below, if you’re in the thrash now, stand up and claim it. Tell us what it’s about. Maybe someone in the tribe can help.

And if you’re on the other side, share how you got there?

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