Steel-Willed Hand Balancer Jaakko Tenhunen Explains Why Effort Brings the Most Satisfaction

Few of us pos­sess the phys­i­cal strength and even stee­l­i­er will to fol­low in the hand­prints of pro­fes­sion­al bal­ancer Jaakko Ten­hunen, but most of us have oth­er projects that could ben­e­fit from the sort of relent­less deter­mi­na­tion he brings to his work. “Effort, not com­fort, is what gives the most tan­gi­ble sense of sat­is­fac­tion,” he remarks in the voiceover above, as the cam­era cap­tures him sup­port­ing his entire body weight on a sin­gle palm, his face intense but not at all anguished. Reduce this ele­gant phi­los­o­phy to the far punchi­er “just do it,” and you stand to sell a lot of shoes.

As Ten­hunen knows first­hand, this sort of effort­ful pur­suit depends on dis­ci­pline and dai­ly prac­tice. Patience is also key, as suc­cess is cumu­la­tive, and dif­fi­cult to mea­sure in the ear­ly stages.

The stripped down aes­thet­ic of his per­for­mance does not nec­es­sar­i­ly make what he does look easy, so much as worth­while. If you are a fledg­ling hand bal­ancer, you may well find it dis­cour­ag­ing, but for those of us striv­ing to see oth­er goals through to com­ple­tion, Tehunen pro­vides a brac­ing visu­al metaphor.

Relat­ed Con­tent:

J.K. Rowl­ing Tells Har­vard Grads Why Suc­cess Begins with Fail­ure

Con­for­mi­ty Isn’t a Recipe for Excel­lence: Wis­dom from George Car­lin & Steve Jobs (NSFW)

Meet Frank Catal­fu­mo, the Shoe­mak­er Who Has Been Mend­ing Souls in Brook­lyn Since 1945

Ayun Hal­l­i­day will be at tabling at the Brook­lyn Zine­fest this Sun­day. Imme­di­ate­ly there­after catch her per­form­ing the Com­plete His­to­ry of her long run­ning zine, the East Vil­lage Inky… in song, as part of Brook­lyn Brain Frame.

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