Lesson on persistence from the iron nun

There is an interesting concept called self learned helplessness which basically states that we are not born pessimistic. We are born full of hopes and willpower.

At a young age, anything is possible... we learn to walk, we learn to interact, we learn complex concepts and we don't care how many tries it takes us to get there. We don't care if we fall, we get back up. We don't care if we failed a thousand times, we try as many times as necessary

The problem appears as we age: As we encounter failure and get hurt, we gradually learn to give up. As we age, thoughts like "I am too old for this" or "no matter how hard I try I am not going to get it" starts to set in. Rather continuing to experiment, we start to cling to behaviors that have rewarded us in the past and start to stagnate

Many times, I have met people that really wanted to do something in the past and given up on it. One wanted to learn a language and said that in her twenties, her brain was too old to learn. Another person said it was too late to become fit and exercise... he had never done anything in his life and it was too late for his body to take it at his age.

The Iron nun brilliantly demonstrates that a huge percentage of the resistence we face is in our mind. After starting to run in her 40s, she willed herself into competing for 40 iron men... proving that when there is a will there is a way. Of course, one must be careful when starting on such a journey but it is not only possible but recommended. We can all achieve our dreams if we set our minds to it, put the efforts needed and persist as long as necessary... This applies to learning a new skill, becoming more fit, professional or personal success or simply living a more fulfilling and happy life

May you, like the iron nun, find your calling, push back the limits, do something awesome