In 2007, author Chuck Klosterman wrote the following piece on the idea of the arch enemy/nemesis and it’s awesome. I’ll wait while you go read it.
Okay, since I know most of you didn’t read it, the idea is that it isn’t who’s on your side that motivates you. It’s who’s against you. I kind of love this while I also know it’s not sustainable.
I’m currently reading a book called the Alter Ego Effect and it’s gist is that we should create alter egos that help us do the things we struggle with. In it, author Todd Herman agrees that creating an enemy, while an option, may not be the long term solution for everyone.
Pushing yourself to achieve and overcome a the expense of another person, even one you hate, can only take you so far. This is because the real enemies we have all come from within. You can spend 6 months training to beat “so and so” or get that promotion so “that asshole Todd,” can’t boss you around anymore, but it’s only a short term fix. Eventually you’re going to have to open up the hood and see what’s wrong with your radiator.
My hood’s been open since January (probably before) and what I consistently see is that I (we) are all our own worst enemies. I(we)constantly self sabotage and constantly look outward for what we have to know is all on the inside. We all know the “things” we need to do to improve but they can be at times the hardest habits and mindsets to break.
So I’ll say this. If a little bit of dislike for something or someone can push you to be a little better. Give it a shot. Just know that fuel is going to run out and you’d better be ready to fight the enemy within.