By: Staci Stallings
I love quotations. Always have. They can convey so much in so very few words. I’ve got quotation books, and I always read the quotes when I get a Guideposts from my mom. Wisdom is something you can find if you just look a little bit.
I found this quote the other day in a Guideposts, and I love it–especially with my newfound “love” of exercise:
“Always remember that dead last is better than did not finish, which is way better than did not start.” — from the blog “From Couch Potato To Runner” by New York Times health columnist Tara Parker-Pope
This applies to so many of life’s “I Want to’s.” You know those things you want to do but never quite find the time to get started. Like gardening or writing that book or volunteering or exercising. You’re going to… Until you WERE going to but….
I think one of the things that stops people is the fear of failure. And failure can be a BIG stopping point. But the thing is, I think too many of us make anything less than first place the first time we go out for something “failure.” We set the standard of “not failure” so high that no matter how good we do, we’re always left with the feeling that we should have done better.
I’ve been reading several self-coaching books by Brooke Castillo, and I love her philosophy that you have to be willing to suck at something if you ever want to get great at it.
Doing “Walk It Out” on my Wii is a great example. At first, WOW was I lost. I got dumped off in this whole new world and all there were were these little floating things EVERYWHERE. At first, I clicked on all of them as I went by so that the song was playing as it kept going “QUE! QUE! QUE!”
After who knows how long of this, I learned that clicking on every one doesn’t work. You have to click on one or two and then collect steps to get them. I have just started my third game, and I’m so much better at it now. Since I’ve gotten the whole town and country once, I’m not so totally lost this time. Plus, I’ve learned that it’s more fun for me if I get each goal in half the steps (one of the settings I didn’t know could be changed the first time I did it).
But here’s the thing… I could have been so scared of being bad at it to begin with that I never started. I could have told myself (as I have in the past) that I just am not good at exercising, so why even try? I could have… but I didn’t.
So I really like the philosophy of giving yourself credit for running the “race” even if you finish dead last and for starting even if you don’t finish.
What might you be putting off that you’re going to be trapped in “did not start” if you don’t go for it now? Don’t wait. You might not get this chance again.