The moment before

People usually fail when they are on the verge of success. So give as much care to the end as to the beginning. Then there will be no failure. 

 -- Tao Te Ching - Lao Tzu


I have learnt that those moments when I feel the most stress, the most desire to give up, the most confused, and the most dispondent, these are the feelings that always come just before a big breakthrough.  

The irony is that they are also the moments when it is easiest to stop and give up, to declare failure.  

Noticing the feelings; calling bullshit on my rationalisations that tells me I have gone backwards; allowing myself to thrash in any way I see fit; and being curious about what is emerging: These are my personal best tools in enabling me to cling on in those moments. 

And then, in a moment, something changes. I meet somebody. I understand something. Something clicks. And the thing I was so worried about moments before now seems mundane. And I have come to a deeper understanding of myself and my existence.