During our Civil Services training in Mussoorie, one day, our physical training (PT) instructor announced the upcoming 9-day trek to the Himalayas.
For the hardest trek route that led to Roop Kund (>5,000 m), when he asked for volunteers, so many hands went up that he had to announce a selection test to pick the fittest guys. And among the hands that went up, one was mine.
Now, just a few years ago, I had flunked even my 1st year morning physical activity course in college, that involved the gentlest walk and run, once a week. I hated it so much that I did not show up and flunked.
Then, why would I then volunteer to do a hard trek, arguably 100x harder than a weekly ‘walk and run’?
Yes, the sense of adventure was there. But just as importantly — we were given a free choice.
I am 100% sure that if the hard-trek had been made compulsory, the SAME 40 odd volunteers would have grumbled and complained loudly.
When we choose to do something, even the hardest things become doable. But when imposed on us, even the simplest things feel hard.
Hard or easy is mostly in our mind.