Saturday, September 9, 2017

The Secret Ingredient to Lasting Change

This morning, while my daughter and I were tending the yard, I started thinking about the number of hours spent keeping it manicured. During my normal routine, I start with a fresh cut, followed by an edge up, and then finish with the blower. On a good day, it takes about an hour to complete and I have to repeat this cycle every 3 to 4 days.

I don't know about you, but there are many days that I am not feeling it. I don't want to sweat. I don't want to knowingly sacrifice myself to the most worrisome gnats on the planet. After a day in the office, I just want to plop myself down on the couch with a nice glass of dry red wine and relax. Is that too much to ask?

Unfortunately, I know that if I don't go out there and tackle the grass, it will only be taller and require more energy to whip it back inline. So, reluctantly, I change clothes and do what must be done.

There are days when my plans are disrupted. Most often, it happens when mother nature brings rain or when I have an appointment that cannot be moved. When this happens, I adjust. It may mean I have to cut it the day before or a day later, but eventually I have to cut it.

As I ponder on the weekly routine of cutting grass, it's hard not to apply the lesson to other things as well. There is the routine of cleaning house, bathing, eating, working, going to church, or attending classes. Whatever it may be for you, there are those things we just have to do.

For many of us, there are things we want to achieve in life. Common goals I often hear involve more money, better health, more free time, stronger relationships, or a happier life. How then do we achieve those things? In many cases, they don't just happen. In fact, for most things, we have to apply substantial effort to achieve them.

When I think about my own life, I find that my failures and near successes were the result of inconsistencies. You know, we do a little today and then take a break. That cycle has followed me throughout my entire life. I believe it is when we identify what must be done and then consistently do it every day that we see the results we all yearn for.

In listening to many of the greatest athletes, musicians, artists, comedians, actors, and entrepreneurs, the word "consistency" flows from their lips most often. It should be no wonder that the secret to achievement is doing the right things repeatedly until we reach our goals. 

So, as I bring today's thought to a close, I encourage you, while I also speak directly to me, to embrace the gift of consistency in our lives. Let's take this opportunity to look for one or two things that we really want to improve upon and work to do something each day that will eventually bring us the outcome we desire.

"Long-term consistency trumps short-term intensity." ~ Bruce Lee
Make today a great one!  

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Damond L. Nollan, M.B.A.

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