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Standing is harder than Running

First step into recovery

The average age of marriage today is 30. Compare that with age 21, as it was in the 1960s, and you will see the steep increase.

Why, though? Commitment. 

Most people do value long-term relationships and will even date for years, but marriage may seem so daunting – because of its commitment.

It’s true that initiation is a difficult step, making it easy to procrastinate other important things in life.

Whether it be making plans, finally booking a trip, starting a new job, or cleaning the house – the jumpstart is the hardest. 

Talk to gym-lovers, and they continuously say the most strenuous part of the gym is getting there. If you can muster up the motivation to get dressed, drive to the gym, and walk to the entrance, the rest of the experience, including the hours of workouts, flows naturally.

Indeed, the hardest part is turning off Netflix and pulling yourself off the couch! 

That first call to action takes most energy. 

Similarly, the most natural and easiest action for a car engine is to drive 60 mph on a highway. You’d think that starting the car and accelerating from 1 – 5 mph would be the easiest. It’s not.

Turning the keys in the ignition and starting the engine is the hardest work an engine can do. Once it hits 60 mph, running for hours is smooth and easy. 

Will Smith famously tells a story about his skydiving experience. His story begins with the night before the big jump. Nervously anticipating plunging out of a plane the next morning, he tosses and turns in bed, his nerves shot, unable to sleep.

He finally drifts off to sleep early in the morning, and as soon as his eyes open, he remembers what’s ahead and feels sick to his stomach, wishing he could stay in bed. 

He musters up the courage, though, and gets out of bed to get ready for the jump. Anxious, he approaches the plane and climbs in. The plane takes off – all is ready for the dive. His nerves are so intense at this point that the instructor counts down and then gives him a little push. 

The next moment is the most intriguing part of the story. Will Smith describes how he free-falls through the sky, and his anxiety replaced with relaxation and serenity. Peace overcomes him. Then pure bliss! 

In retrospect, Will Smith emphasizes that planning, preparation, and precautions cause fear, not the actual event.

When the scary-falling-through-the-sky comes, we think that’s the point when fear should arise, yet in reality, that’s the payoff. That is the point of pure relaxation, bliss, and fulfillment.

The first steps are the hardest and scariest, but in practice, all is good. 

Finally, I am reminded of a personal experience I had in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho. Aside from being famous for being a vacation spot for the Kardashians, Adam Levine, and Harry Styles, Coeur d’Alene is famous for its beautiful lake and mountain range that surrounds it.

I was visiting a friend from the town who took me to go jumping off a cliff into the lake. 

He jumped first, and then it was my turn. Standing on the cliff and looking 30 feet below, I thought of ways to get out of this. I counted down from 10. I stopped at three and then counted down from there. Impossible.

If you count down, you will not jump after you hit one. During the counting, your brain has time to switch into a logic mode, developing convincing reasons against what you are about to do.

The only thing that got me off the cliff was to step to the edge and just jump. I didn’t have the time to spend analyzing the view, planning ahead 20 steps, or convincing myself why what, and how.

I just jumped. That worked.

I then had the amazing experience of falling through the air, crashing into the beautiful lake and most importantly, I did it.

faith and jumping into water - recovery

The accomplishment is 100% credited to not counting down or thinking about all the what-if’s — just jumping off the cliff and into the experience without protest.

Starting recovery is like any other challenge in life. It is difficult, and it is a commitment, but it is safe and doable.

If my friend hadn’t jumped off the cliff before me, I might have legitimately believed that the lake wasn’t deep enough, or the rocks would permanently damage me. But he jumped first and came out unscathed. That was the motivation I needed. 

Many have gone through the recovery journey and accomplished miracles along the way. Because people have gone on before you and lived (and thrived!), the only way for you to proceed is to jump.

Once you’re in and driving a steady 60 mph, the process becomes smoother. Everything worth having in life always requires work, and unfortunately, the most difficult step is not running or walking but standing up to begin.

Fortunately, once you stand up and take a step, the rest of the process is easier. 

hope and recovery - sunset

Tikvah Lake Recovery encourages anyone struggling with alcohol, substance abuse, or any mental health issues to stand up and seek the right program that will provide them with a smooth recovery process.

We are proud that at Tikvah Lake Recovery, our incredible staff work one-on-one daily with each of our guests (with a max of six at a time) to offer our unique expertise, which allows for a successful recovery experience. 

All you need to do is get up. Take that first step

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Adam Nesenoff

Adam Nesenoff has been working in recovery for over ten years.

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