Eight years. That is how long Jonathan Larson took to write his first play, Superbia. It failed (at least in a traditional sense). Superbia was never produced and never made it to the stage. It did, however, set him up to write one of the most memorable plays of the modern era.





Nine and seven. That is how many years Lin Manuel Miranda took to write  >In the Heights  >and Hamilton respectively. From his  href="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WNFf7nMIGnE" target="_blank" >performance > of “Alexander Hamilton” for the newly inaugurated President Obama in 2009, Hamilton would not open on Broadway until 2015. It was Larson’s Rent that first inspired Miranda to begin writing  >In the Heights. >






Imagine devoting such a massive block of your life to one singular project; one goal.






“Your future self needs your help today.”






“Cages or wings, which do you prefer?”






Had either one of these giants of musical theater said, “This is too hard; I think I’m done.” we would never know their names. We would never have experienced the work of art they created from the depths of their own minds. In the film, Tick, Tick… Boom!, after realizing his eight years of work is not going to end the way he had hoped, Jonathan asks, “What do I do now?” His agent’s response: “Begin writing the next one. And the next one after that.” While yes, it may be a movie, remember who directed it. Lin Manuel Miranda. Lin Manual Miranda — the one person who could relate.






Throughout our endeavor to be a healthier version of ourselves, we face failure after failure. I have failed more times than I can count. However, each time I do, I learn something new about my present self to help my future self prepare. Something I think we all struggle with is when we have those days, weeks, or even months when we don’t want to exercise or do anything health-related. I recently became a parent, followed swiftly by a parent of two. My body fat percentage skyrocketed after my first kid. It both is and was really f***ing hard to find the drive to go to the gym.






Kids do have their benefits though. One such example is observing them as they learn to walk. There’s a 4-step process: Try, fail, cry, repeat. It’s the repetition that is so fascinating. Quarterbacks are taught that if they throw an interception they need to have a short memory. Kids embody this. And, after many repetitions, they succeed. And that is positively brilliant to witness.






Inertia is always the hardest part to overcome. Summoning the drive to begin — especially if you’ve had something before, you’ve lost it, and now you’re starting all over again. But, remember this:






“Your future self needs your help today.”






“Cages or wings, which do you prefer?”






Writing this newsletter is something I’ve been thinking about for months. It gives wings to the previously caged thoughts which impeded new ideas from forming. This edition marks the conclusion of the first month. Yay! I made it one month. One hundred to go.






So, which do you prefer? Cages? Or wings?






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