Into the valley.

Into the valley.

There is a cost to trying to maintain maximum fitness at all times.

When navigating a fitness landscape, you often need to go down (into a valley) to reach a higher peak.

Upgrading your life systems (in every life area) has costs. If you’re never willing to pay those costs (emotional, financial, time, energy, learning curve), you limit yourself.

Example 1 (Social):

Sometimes your friends hold you back. I had a tough time in 7th grade — my friends were frenemies. Before things got better, they had to get worse. I endured a period of loneliness until I found new friends, who really acted like friends.

“Friends” who belittle you, sabotage you, or resent your success — who needs that? But how are you going to make new friends if your current dysfunctional social circle is taking up all of your time, energy, and attention?

If you can see a higher peak across the valley, start walking down.

Example 2 (Physical):

If you switch to a paleo diet, you might have a few days where you feel awful. Withdrawal from the exorphins in wheat and milk might cause aches and pains, and you might feel lethargic until your body gets used to burning fat for fuel. But after a few days you’ll feel energetic and clear-headed, and possibly experience the reversal of long-term inflammatory conditions.

Worse before you feel better. Down into the valley, then climb to a higher peak.

Example 3 (Technological):

For about five years I was aware of the benefits of using the WordPress self-hosted plugin as opposed to Over the weekend I ripped the band-aid off, and migrated to the more flexible and powerful platform. Immediate result? Site down for almost 2 days. Someone needs to write this blog post:

How To Smoothly Migrate Your Domain-Mapped site to Self-Hosted WordPress

Not me. Despite learning how to create a subdomain and importing my site ahead of time there, something along the way went to crap. Oh well — back up now.

Transitions are painful. When you upgrade your system, expect a steep learning curve, downtime, and temporarily reduced fitness (apologies to evolutionary biologists for the metaphor). The longer you wait, the more pain.

Or, you could be like George RR Martin, and never upgrade. DOS forever!