It was warm summer afternoon and my family and I were enjoying a wonderful day on a warm California beach just outside Oceanside. The waves were perfect for surfing and body boarding, and the locals were out in droves.

My two oldest teenage sons and I had grabbed a wet suit and a body board from a local rental shop and decided to join the party. I headed for the water with hesitancy, as my swimming abilities are severely lacking.

I’m convinced I was built to sink rather than to swim.

With hopeful thoughts of buoyancy, we headed out towards waves. I had watched the experienced locals go out with ease as they ducked down through the seemingly small waves and make it out just beyond where the waves were forming.

I saw how they rested effortlessly beyond where the waves were forming in the calm and peaceful water. I wanted that same result, to sit in that calm water and watch for the perfect wave.

A massive wave hit me in the face and pushed me back. My arms and legs were tired and throbbing. I was out of gas and my fears about not being a great swimmer were being realized.

The first few waves weren’t that difficult once I had learned how to duck just at the right time. As soon I came up on the other side of each wave I would take a deep breath and paddle hard.  I did this over and over again.

Exhausted and tired I pushed on until suddenly I broke through and there were no more waves.

I joined the other surfers and body boarders in the calm water beyond the break. After resting, I caught my first wave and then repeated the process several times. We created some great memories that day.


No matter what goal you set, you will experience waves. These waves will push you back, as if life is testing you to see if resolve and tenacity are part of your character.

It’s almost as if you’re being asked, “How bad do you really want this?”

Resistance comes in a variety of shapes and sizes but if you fail to recognize it you can easily get distracted, quit, or get angry.

Resistance can look like this:

  • The voice in your head that says, you don’t really want this…
  • The distraction that causes you to get lost in your social media when you hit discomfort
  • The anger and frustration you feel when things don’t go according to plan
  • The tendency to bottle up or hide when emotions get difficult
  • The desire to blame others for your situation and not make plans to make it better
  • The decision to throw in the towel instead of finish that last task

Here is the secret:

When you break free from the level at which you are playing, resistance will be a part of the game.

Dreams can be achieved, they are simply on the other side of resistance.