Why We NEED to Keep Pushing that Rock Uphill
I was reading the latest issue of Psychology Today recently and came across an article about a man who haphazardly fell into ultramarathon running. For those of you who don't know, an ultramarathon is a race anywhere from about 30-100 miles long, and, yes, you run it. A podiatrist who ran two miles "to keep in shape" gradually found himself training for marathons and then graduated into runs lasting from 10 PM to 6 AM in preparation for hundred-mile races.
But enough about this ironman. The article features a subsection called, "Toughen Up: Four keys to handling challenges," which states that people with a trait dubbed "hardiness" are more resilient and have a better general well-being than people who can't adapt to change. The article states that since the world is in a state of constant evolution, then the ones who can adapt to relative inconsistency by finding balance in themselves are perhaps "more fit" than those who lack "hardiness."
In our class discussion today, we seemed to gravitate toward the idea that avoiding stress and change would lead to a more consistent and happier life (wouldn't the residents in Camus' novel agree that they would be happier without the plague?), but it seems that psychological research points in the opposite direction. We might instead have a need to keep pushing out metaphoric rocks uphill in order to be properly prepared and "fit" for the inevitable changes tht occur both independent of and dependent on our own doings.