‘Linchpin’, written by Seth Godin, is a book I wish every high school and college student in America would read.
It talks about how to achieve greatness in any field while navigating through the challenges of our 21st Century world.
In one critical part of the book, Godin talks about how we all struggle with the internal battle between the daemon and the resistance:
“The Daemon is a Greek term (the Romans called it a ‘genius’). They believed the daemon was a separate being that lived inside of us. The genius living inside of us would struggle to express itself in art, writing , or any other endeavor.”
The daemon’s enemy is the resistance. It will invent stories, illnesses, emergencies, and distractions in order to keep the genius bottled up.
The resistance is afraid. Afraid of what will happen to you (and to it) if your genius gets out, if your gifts are received, if the magic happens.
You know the resistance is there. You’ve felt it.
The resistance is nefarious and clever. It creates diseases, procrastination, and most especially rationalization. Lots and lots of rationalization, some of which you may be experiencing right now.”
I’m sure you can relate to this as well as I can.
Everyone has some type of genius skills within them, whether they be academic, athletic, artistic, or any other form.
And it can be scary to let it out, because we are all hard wired with this ‘resistance’ feeling deep inside of us. For millions of years it was necessary for human survival.
When taking this concept specifically to athletic development, it is my firm belief that for every 1 athlete who reaches an elite level in their sport, there were at least 100 others who could have been just as good.
So what happened to everyone who didn’t make it?
They all gave in to the resistance.
They allowed it to create endless distractions in their lives.
It made them consistently take time off to attend to an endless series of minor ailments & illnesses for months and sometimes even years.
It let others cause them to lose faith in themselves.
It told them it was OK to put off until tomorrow, next week, next season, next year, what they should have been working towards right now.
And then it rationalized all these decisions so that it all made sense in their head, that never letting their genius shine had a perfectly defensible explanation.
If you know you have something better inside you than what is currently showing today, and you only need to continue developing that genius skill in order for it to flourish, then stand up to the resistance
Fight through all the things that knock everyone else off course, despite that powerful voice telling you its OK to give in this time.
Because once you start standing up to the resistance some of the time, it begins to weaken. And before you know it, the daemon starts winning the battle.
And you will have overcome the largest obstacle on your way to reaching your true potential.
(‘Linchpin’ can be found at many online bookstores, including here: Amazon.com )