Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Bring the Tartar Sauce

2013 has been a hell of a year already and if the hurdles that we have had to overcome are any indication of what the event will be like... It promises to be a grueling, arduous and demanding Challenge for everyone involved!!

As you may have seen on our Facebook page, Jim's grandfather (Chief Oliver Red Cloud) took ill in the beginning of January and has remained in the hospital ever since as he continues to fight for his life. The trip from Pine Ridge to Rapid City to visit him has kept family members on the road and in hotels for weeks and his absence has taken a toll on everyone. All that anybody can do now is wait, pray and hope.  

I find it a touch ironic that this came on the heels of my last blog post where I lauded the Chief for his tenacity and perseverance.  But, as one of our Challengers said... "It is not in his DNA to give up with out a fight."  The old man continues to amaze and inspire me.  He continues to make me think... 

I was corresponding with one of our riders about some adversity that he has faced recently and when the conversation turned to the future (whether he will be working in a month from now much less whether he will be able to participate in the Hoka Hey Challenge this summer), he said "If it is meant to be - it will be". Now... I've heard this comment at various times throughout my life and, with certain exceptions such as the loss of a loved one or losing your job when the company you work for falls off of the fiscal cliff; the concept doesn't always sit well with me. For my own part, I believe in self-fulfilling prophesy, I believe you get what you expect, I believe it pays to be optimistic and I believe that if you want something badly enough nothing is going to stop you.

This is not to say that I think we have complete control over our lives or that attitude is absolute. I am enough of a realist to question the likelihood that my thoughts will affect much of anything that occurs outside of my own head. (Certainly I won't go so far as to think that an envelope from Black Hills Power Company will contain anything except a bill - no matter how much I wish it were a check.) But, I do know that when things are going well and I am feeling up, not only am I a whole lot easier to get along with but I think more clearly, I am more confident, and I am more productive; which in turn makes me more confident, which makes me more productive which makes me a whole lot easier to get along with. And so it goes.

To quote the writer Charles R. Swindoll "I believe the single most significant decision I can make on a day-to-day basis is my choice of attitude. It is more important than my past, my education, my bankroll, my successes or failures, fame or pain, what other people think of me or say about me, my circumstances, or my position. Attitude keeps me going or cripples my progress. It alone fuels my fire or assaults my hope. When my attitudes are right, there is no barrier too high, no valley too deep, no dream too extreme, no challenge too great for me."

Hoka Hey!

When facing a difficult task, act as though it is impossible to fail. 
If you're going after Moby Dick, take along the tartar sauce!  
The Complete Life's Little Instruction Book by H. Jackson Brown Jr.