"If you view crossing the finish line as the measure of your life, you’re setting yourself up for a personal disaster. There are very very very few people who win gold at the Olympics. And if you say, ‘if I don’t win gold then I’m a failure or I’ve let somebody down or something,’ .. What if you win a silver? What if you win a bronze? What if you come fourth? What if your binding comes apart? … What if all of those millions of things that happen in life happen. … Only a few people that go there are going to win gold. And it’s the same in some degree I think in commanding a spaceship or doing a spacewalk it is a very rare, singular moment-in-time event in the continuum of life. And you need to honour the highs and the peaks in the moments — you need to prepare your life for them — but recognize the fact that the preparation for those moments is your life and, in fact, that’s the richness of your life. … The challenge that we set for each other, and the way that we shape ourselves to rise to that challenge, is life.
-Chris Hadfield, astronaut
I’m tempted to say, “That’s easy for you to say… you walked in space!”, but I truthfully am goal-oriented to a fault. To the point that it’s paralyzing to even realize an actual, concrete way to get to that goal. This doesn’t make me want my “Olympic gold” any less, but I should focus on and appreciate the unglamorous and gritty daily efforts as the genuine measure of my character. Daily motivation and hard work have to count for something!