rebelling against low expectations

Now What? Doing Hard Things As An Adult


I got Do Hard Things for my sixteenth birthday, and let it collect dust for a while.

I knew it was going to be a tough read, and I used that as an excuse to put it off. When I finally did read it, I had two thoughts: “Well, duh, that makes sense,” and “Why haven’t I heard this before?”

This began my life as a rebelutionary. I didn’t do anything supremely amazing or famous, but the concepts outlined by Alex and Brett became a part of my new thinking process. It changed how I approached life, and honestly, it was one of the best things that happened to me.

How Do Hard Things Changed My Teen Years…

Do Hard Things and The Rebelution helped me swallow my fears and jump outside my comfort zone. Ultimately, I landed a job as head writer at a local magazine after hunting around for a writing position, something I had wanted to do, but was too intimidated to try. This was the first of many steps as a rebelutionary. From a shy, scared young teen, I grew into an outgoing, still scared but braver and more determined senior in high school.

Then I graduated.

After recently finishing my first year of college, the truth hit me:

I’m not a teen anymore.

I’m a young adult on my way to becoming an old adult. The stories about 13-19 year-olds doing amazing things no longer have the same sort of impact on me.

…And Is Changing My Adult Years…

As I thought about this more, I realized I can’t be the only rebelutionary “aging out.” There are rebelutionaries all across the country who are becoming adults. But the concepts and thinking that we learned as teens hold true. What we learned, and how that changed the way we approached teenagehood, doesn’t stop after turning twenty.

Hard things are still hard no matter what age you are. Challenging yourself and approaching life with an “I can do it attitude” is something adults still need to do. What The Rebelution does is jump-start all of us as teenagers into adulthood.

Hard things are still hard no matter what age you are. Share on X

The Rebelution encourages us to keep doing hard things as adults.

I’m in college right now. Getting up in the morning is always a struggle. Doing homework on the weekend is tough. Going to bed before one a.m. is a challenge. I have to be disciplined about my life at school. That’s all well and good. However, when I come home, I’m tempted to go into low power mode and hide away in my room.

But that’s where do hard things comes in.

Instead of sitting on the couch with my phone, I can go get groceries, visit my grandma, take the car through the car wash.

Or, I can slump into the “lazy millennial” category very easily. I could work an entry-level job and live with my parents, sponging off their generosity and returning little for the favor. Isn’t that what young adults do? Is that what they should do?

Isn’t The Rebelution about rebelling against low expectations?

What stops me from doing that is The Rebelution and its challenge to do hard things. I remember what I’ve been taught and what I’ve been fighting for throughout high school. It’s what rouses me out of my lethargy when I don’t feel like it and motivates me to go outside my comfort zone.

When I’m tempted to slouch off, “do hard things” runs briefly through my head and my motivation comes back. Of course, I’m still learning and have a long way to go, but The Rebelution is an encouragement on a daily basis. Until I wrote this article, I didn’t really realize exactly how essential The Rebelution had become in my life and how huge its impact on me was.

…And How It Can Change Yours.

Low expectations don’t change once you’re no longer a teenager. Young adults and “upper level” adults have their own set of low expectations to rebel against and rise above. Doing hard things is a lifelong challenge, but it gets easier to make the decision to do them.

To all of my fellow adult rebelutionaries, the fight doesn’t stop once you become an adult. That’s when the stakes get bigger.

We’ve all been taught that what we do as teenagers matters. What we do as adults matters even more.

We’ve all been taught that what we do as teenagers matters. What we do as adults matters even more. Share on X

Why do we do hard things in the first place? As adults, it becomes even more of a witness for Christ to those around us. Why do we do these things? Why do we work hard? We do it because to serve our God with anything less than our best is dishonoring to him.

We know others who choose not to do the hard thing for various reasons, but we’re motivated by the fact that he’s never asked us to do what he hasn’t modeled for us in the first place. He has uniquely gifted each of us with what we need for each of our missions.

We want to be welcomed into the Kingdom knowing that aided by his strength, we offered our King the very best and he can look at us and say, “Well done, My good and faithful servant.”

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About the author

Elizabeth Holland

is currently a student at the Master’s University in California where she’s pursuing a degree in English. She enjoys traveling, playing her violin, making new things, and spending time with her friends. Elizabeth loves to write and hopes to make it her full-time occupation once she graduates.

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rebelling against low expectations

The Rebelution is a teenage rebellion against low expectations—a worldwide campaign to reject apathy, embrace responsibility, and do hard things. Learn More →