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At age 27 I went to Madeira, Portugal where I ran an ultramarathon. It was registered as being 115km. In reality you run an additional 10-15km. So let’s say 125km.

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It ended up being close to a 30-hour run (non-stop) across so of the worst mountain terrain I’ve ever ran on. Some people died that year I believe and there were times at which; when it was 2am at night after 14 hours of running- and it was pouring with rain 900 metres up with more hills to climb – that I questioned whether I’d make it out alive.

Sounds horrendous right?

The ‘why did you do it? kind of horrendous’

It was.

And I wish I did this when I saw 25.

I went through an inordinate amount of pain to complete that ultramarathon. And it blew my conceptions of what (at the time) physical and emotional are.

Since then there is little that scares me. I just set this as my reference point and am able to hurdle or run through so much more

As counter-intuitive as it might seem – I encourage everyone to take on something that truly scares them as early as possible – as in accomplishing/finishing/achieving it – it sets you free.

So the challenges:

  • Experience intense physical pain
  • Experience intense emotional pain

Then you can truly develop a ‘Special Forces’ type approach in life:

  • I ran 22 days in a row moving from 3/5/7/10 miles every 7 days
    • I felt fine
  • I saw for 8 hours to get my back covered in tattoos
    • At the end the tattooist tells me only two people in his decade of tattooing have last a full day (w/no painkillers) of getting tattooed:
      • A professional Muay Thai fighter and I
  • I have turned up in multiple countries (Holland, Brazil, Malta) not knowing anyone and setting myself up to live
  • I now write on Quora daily and hit 1 million+ views a week recently
  • I believe it’s possible to achieve my continued physical goals as well as my career and life and love goals
    • Using this emotionally stable framework

Don’t get me wrong. I am not without my issues. This just massively helped me in ways I never predicted. I would have everyone experience pain sooner.

 

This answer was taken from Deepak Shukla’s Quora

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