Effort and Reward: The Big Snow

Snow days can teach us a lot about effort and reward (and fun).

Don’t you love those winter days when everything shuts for snow? At least, didn’t you love them as a kid? Instead of going to school, everyone went out to play in the snow.

I remember one year when I was a kid, living in Cardiff. In the late 1970s or early 80’s it must have been; the year we still call “the big snow”. School was shut for what seemed like weeks! We spent your day building snowmen, having snowball fights, rolling snowballs to see who can make the biggest. The snow was so deep we made “caves” in it, and we dug out fortresses for our snowball fights. But best of all was going up “the dell”, a steep normally grassy hill at the top of my road, and racing down it on the sledge that our parents bought for us.

The thing about sledging was that you spent more time dragging the sledge up hill than you ever did riding it. But we didn’t mind, because the thrill of riding was worth every ounce of effort we put into dragging that sledge back up the hill.


Finally, at the end of the day, frozen to the bone and completely exhausted, we’d trudge back home for tea and a toast by the has fire.
There is a point to my sad-old-man reminiscence:

We often talk about the ride, but rarely the walk back up hill. Perhaps that is why we see the success that other people enjoy, but rarely the effort that they’re putting in behind the scenes. The truth is, the people who have the most fun are are often the ones who work hardest and who sacrifice most.┬áBut they don’t mind, because the thrill of the ride is worth it. The rewards far out-weigh the effort that it takes to achieve them.

So, given that you don’t get to ride unless you put in the effort, perhaps it is time to re-evaluate that up-hill climb? Is there some “ride” you want to enjoy? If so, then what effort will you need to put in before you get to enjoy it? Are you willing to do it? Because I think we’re setting ourselves up to have… a lot of fun!