To the Person Who Was Wondering:

November 16th, 2004 · No Comments · Writing

did william wegman had to overcome any obstacles in his life

Well, I don’t really know for certain, but I’ll take a stab at it and say that yes, he probably did. Life seems to have obstacles no matter who you are, and it appears to me that the more risks you take in life, the more obstacles you potentially encounter. Risk-taking is a necessary factor in achieving success, so it follows that if you’re going to be as famous as Mr. Wegman, you probably have overcome a good many obstacles to get to where you are today.

I’ve certainly overcome obstacles in my own life, and sometimes, it feels like I overcome little ones on an almost daily basis. One obstacle currently on my plate is the laundry. Granted, it’s probably such a small obstacle that it’s not worth mentioning, but sometimes, when I get overwhelmed with life, I let those little things slide, and then they begin to pile up, and eventually, they become an obstacle.

A real obstacle, that in this case, is physically obstructing the path to my side of the bed. But also a metaphorical obstacle, because it is taking a significant amount of self-control and discipline to tackle the sheer volume of laundry today, while I have some free time, even though I’d much rather be doing something else. That is just one small example of me overcoming an obstacle in my life, insignificant and ridiculous though it is.

But expand that small problem into larger, more significant terms, and you end up with the type of obstacle that you were no doubt referring to in your query: obstacles that both impede your physical and metaphysical path to success in life. Obstacles such as poverty, or lack of access to education, or discrimination, or lack of self-worth, or lack of support from loved ones, or mental or physical handicaps.

In my own limited experience, these larger obstacles are best tackled in the exact same way as the smaller ones: by confronting the obstacle directly and without hesitation, breaking it down into manageable portions, and exerting an extraordinary amount of self-disciple and hard work to clear it out of your path. If you’d like a recommendation for an artist who has managed to do this extraordinarily well, you might want to read up on the wonderful painter Chuck Close.

Hope that helps!


Category: Writing

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