Advertising
Advertising

How To Walk On Water

How To Walk On Water

If you’re familiar with the stories of Christendom, you probably know the one about St. Peter walking on water. As a kid I heard the story many times and always with the same lesson: Peter was a failure because he grew afraid of the wind and waves.

I knew I’d be very uncomfortable about walking on a constantly heaving wet floor, let alone actual water. But that never came up. None of the pastors I heard recount the story every praised Peter for having the nerve to get out of the boat to start with. They just warbled on and on about how everybody needed to be less like Peter and have more faith.

Advertising

Therein lies the reason for the dredging of my childhood and slapping a gasping memory on a page before you.

Advertising

    Peter continues to be degraded for failing to take more than a few steps across a churning sea but I’ve yet to hear somebody mock the dudes who stayed in the boat. Many of the good folks around would have you believe that life is all either hot or cold. Success or failure. Laudable bravery or deplorable cowardice.

    Good for them.

    Advertising

    Let’s take a break from that mindset and think about the times you’ve gotten out of a boat in your life. Don’t focus on how you didn’t make it more than a few steps away from the boat before you needed to be rescued. Don’t focus on your failure to walk across the ocean. Think instead of all the steps you DID take. Think about how you believed in something enough to do what others said you couldn’t.

    You got out of the boat. That’s amazing. You can do it again, too. Here are a few ideas to get you started:

    Advertising

    1. Show kindness without an end game — Few are capable of such a thing. When presented with an opportunity to be kind, take it if you’ve got the resources. You’re out of the boat.
    2. Complete a cost-free step to achieving a dream — Too often we let money get in the way of progress. Pick a task or group of tasks you need to make a dream happen and complete them. You’re out of the boat.
    3. Take a worldwide problem and solve it for somebody in your neighborhood — Changing the world is an impossible task but you can make a difference on your doorstep. In changing the world of another, you’ve changed the world for us all. That’s definitely a getting-out-of-the-boat sort of approach.

    What do you think? Should we continue celebrating failure like the gurus tell us to or should we focus on those first successful steps and figure out how to repeat them, learn from them, and add to them?

    I’m glad for your thoughts.

    Image: Kevin Dooley

    More by this author

    Seth Simonds

    Seth writes about lifestyle tips on Lifehack.

    How to Become an Early Riser and Stay Energetic 21 First Date Ideas 11 Sinfully Easy Sangria Recipes Sleep Hack: A Simple Strategy For Better Rest In Less Time Lifehack 5-Day Early Riser Challenge Final

    Trending in Featured

    1 Face Adversity with a Smile 2 The Gentle Art of Saying No 3 What Is Speed Reading and How to Successfully Learn It 4 The Science of Setting Goals (And Its Effect on Your Brain) 5 How to Stop Procrastinating: 11 Practical Ways for Procrastinators

    Read Next

    Advertising
    Advertising
    Advertising

    Last Updated on February 25, 2020

    Face Adversity with a Smile

    Face Adversity with a Smile

    I told my friend Graham that I often cycle the two miles from my house to the town centre but unfortunately there is a big hill on the route. He replied, ‘You mean fortunately.’ He explained that I should be glad of the extra exercise that the hill provided.

    My attitude to the hill has now changed. I used to grumble as I approached it but now I tell myself the following. This hill will exercise my heart and lungs. It will help me to lose weight and get fit. It will mean that I live longer. This hill is my friend. Finally as I wend my way up the incline I console myself with the thought of all those silly people who pay money to go to a gym and sit on stationery exercise bicycles when I can get the same value for free. I have a smug smile of satisfaction as I reach the top of the hill.

    Advertising

    Problems are there to be faced and overcome. We cannot achieve anything with an easy life. Helen Keller was the first deaf and blind person to gain a University degree. Her activism and writing proved inspirational. She wrote, “Character cannot be developed in ease and quiet. Only through experiences of trial and suffering can the soul be strengthened, vision cleared, ambition inspired and success achieved.”

    One of the main determinants of success in life is our attitude towards adversity. From time to time we all face hardships, problems, accidents, afflictions and difficulties. Some are of our making but many confront us through no fault of our own. Whilst we cannot choose the adversity we can choose our attitude towards it.

    Advertising

    Douglas Bader was 21 when in 1931 he had both legs amputated following a flying accident. He was determined to fly again and went on to become one of the leading flying aces in the Battle of Britain with 22 aerial victories over the Germans. He was an inspiration to others during the war. He said, “Don’t listen to anyone who tells you that you can’t do this or that. That’s nonsense. Make up your mind, you’ll never use crutches or a stick, then have a go at everything. Go to school, join in all the games you can. Go anywhere you want to. But never, never let them persuade you that things are too difficult or impossible.”

    How can you change your attitude towards the adversity that you face? Try these steps:

    Advertising

    1. Confront the problem. Do not avoid it.
    2. Deliberately take a positive attitude and write down some benefits or advantages of the situation.
    3. Visualise how you will feel when you overcome this obstacle.
    4. Develop an action plan for how to tackle it.
    5. Smile and get cracking.

    The biographies of great people are littered with examples of how they took these kinds of steps to overcome the difficulties they faced. The common thread is that they did not become defeatist or depressed. They chose their attitude. They opted to be positive. They took on the challenge. They won.

    Featured photo credit: Jamie Brown via unsplash.com

    Advertising

    Read Next