“It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.”

If you follow the lives of bodybuilders, you will know the moment most would view as their greatest ‘strength’ moment is actually the moment in which they are weakest; competition day. It’s the culmination of weeks/months/years of painstaking effort and work that amount to a single display of their body. While they appear to be at the height of their strength, the minutes of posing are actually the weakest a bodybuilder is; starved for water, exhausted, polished with fake tanner and spray to make every muscle and vein pop from their carved bodies.

In similar fashion, the life of an entrepreneur is quite similar. There are moments that demand every ounce of determination and strength simply to push forward to the next day. It’s an inner belief that carries them to see the fruition of their vision and dreams. They’ve pushed past the naysayers and scorners; those that would openly state they are crazy for pursuing the unconventional path.

At this moment in my life, I’m feeling the gravity of doing ‘all in’ on recent ventures. There is no plan B.

In the bible, it is stated that a man does not build a tower before first counting the cost of doing so. We live in a society that spends far more time thinking of the potential rewards from risk/work than the cost of doing so. It’s much easier to picture yourself living a dream life with fat bank accounts, investments, and red-bottom heels. In fact, this tends to feel damn good. It’s oftentimes little more than a fantasy.

What we don’t like doing is preparing ourselves for the day[s] where life feels itself to be a battle that wears away at every ounce of your commitment; to your dreams and…yourself.

Were I to only speak of the laurels and ‘sexy’ days I’ve experienced as an entrepreneur, I don’t think it would be a proper display of integrity behind my inner character and drive.

On my last trip to Ohio, I left with the full realization that I wouldn’t be returning the same person as the man that went to visit on December 18th. I was able to fully soak and enjoy every second of time with my family and friends. It was, by far, the best visit to Ohio I’ve had in my entire life. I knew that I’d be returning to Texas to step into the arena and fight.

It’s time to fight. No regrets. No retreat. No reserves.

We’re a “Plan B” society that often puts more value on our backup plans than on the notion of pursuing a passion/dream with every ounce of your being. The impact this has on every element of our lives is further reaching than we tend to realize.

How can somebody say “I love you” to another, if they have never counted the cost of pursuing their passions with reckless abandon?

I’ve never had greater clarity or focus on the beliefs I hold in my heart than in this moment.

See you on the other side.

Featured Image From Deviantart

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