“If you saw Atlas, the giant who holds the world on his shoulders, if you saw that he stood, blood running down his chest, his knees buckling, his arms trembling but still trying to hold the world aloft with the last of his strength, and the greater his effort the heavier the world bore down upon his shoulders – What would you tell him?”
“I…don’t know. What…could he do? What would you tell him?”
“To shrug.” – Ayn Rand
For those of your who are into hitting the gym, lifting weights, I say this: when it feels like the weight of the world is on your shoulders… squat.
To the rest of you: massive action.
I used to victimize myself over all the bad things that happened to me. I was depressed and anxious and in poor health and poor and pessimistic. The world was a terrible place.
Why did this had to happen to me?
It doesn’t stop it from happening though.
We’re all like Atlas. No matter our jobs, our influence in the world. None of it matters. We all carry the weight of the world on our shoulders. We are all given this task, and complaining about it won’t change anything.
But doing something about it…
The only way to become stronger, better, faster, richer, more talented, more influential, is to venture into the center of your fears. What you’ll discover there, fortunately, won’t be darkness or death or oblivion, but rather the realization that fear is an illusion.
“Many layers of fear, afraid of itself.”
You can spend your whole life being afraid that the weight is going to eventually crush you. And it will. Eventually.
Or you can spend your whole life being more afraid that if you don’t become stronger, the weight is going to crush you…
What I am really trying to say is, fear is a double edged sword. Much like hope.
You can turn fear in on itself.
Be more afraid of not taking action. Of wasting precious time complaining.
When things go wrong, when there seems to be no way out, the last thing you want to do is ignore your problems. Hope they’ll go away. Because they won’t. They never do.
The weight you have to carry has be given to you without you asking for it.
The same way, if you want to grow as a person, you can’t do only the things that are easy. Or when you feel like doing them.
That is what Atlas teaches us.
Whether you want it or not, the weight is always on your shoulders. And it’s not getting any lighter.
There won’t be a day when you won’t have to struggle to get what you want. There won’t be peace and comfort. The sooner you realize this, the better.
Keep your head high, no matter what.
Stumble from defeat to defeat until you achieve victory.
Fail your way to success.
Don’t cry, don’t whine.
Just keep putting on foot in front of the other.
And some days you’ll be lucky enough to forget about the weight of the world on your shoulders…