Once You Gain Personal Momentum in Any Endeavor, its Easier to Keep it Going, Than it is to Start again.
Many moons ago, back in the mid-1980’s, my brother owned an orange Volkswagen Bug. This little car ran just fine once you got it started, but once you stopped…that was an entirely different issue! I can remember many times being behind the car and pushing it in circumstances I would not consider favorable. Such as in the rain at night in the fast lane on Interstate 395 in Washington DC!
Now a VW Bug isn’t a heavy car as far as cars go, but it still takes quite a bit of energy for one person to push it on a flat road or a slight incline. The way this particular car worked is that you had to push it until it was moving fast enough for the driver to “pop” the clutch and start the car. It would not start from a stand still most of the time (and eventually gave out completely in a scenario not much different from the picture above…the middle of nowhere in a desert area…made for a hot hitch-hike for yours truly:-)
The hardest part about pushing the car was the initial push, when the car was just inert weight. It took all of my strength to get it moving a little, but once it started rolling it was easier and easier to push it. This is a perfect metaphor for just about anything you want to do in life.
The Beginning is Always More Difficult, Especially When You’re Tackling Something New.
You have multiple variables that you are dealing with.
You have a learning curve that you will have to climb. You have to develop a new discipline, and also will have to exercise self-discipline. You have fear of the unknown and the natural trepidation of stepping outside of your warm, fuzzy comfort zone. You have the demons of past remembrances of when things didn’t go your way. You have the influences of a negative world. You have the constant struggle with your other priorities for the use of whatever time will be required. You have the impatience of human nature wanted to be gratified instantly. You have more than this, but this is enough for today’s purpose!
The point is, that getting started into anything means that you are, and have been, dealing with all of these things in some way. As you get started and begin taking steps, regardless of how small, you realize that you CAN take steps. Any time you realize you CAN take steps is actually a huge step in itself because this realization is key to succeeding in whatever your quest is.
All Goals are Achieved Through a Series (Process) of Small Steps.
Once you get it started, it is much easier to take the next step the next day. This is because you are making the taking of the steps more of a habit and therefore becoming more and more comfortable with whatever you are doing. You also are experiencing the “feel good” part of taking the steps. The internal reward of knowing that you proactively did something positive. This feeds the habit of doing the thing that you are doing. Pretty soon, after you have been taking steps for a period of time, some results begin to show up. This further fuels the fire and you have the opportunity to pick up the pace now. You can take more steps faster because you are gaining confidence and knowledge and the habit is making things more fluid. You get into a rhythm.
It doesn’t matter what it is you’re doing. It could be an exercise program, or a job, or a new business, or anything. This concept is universal. It relates to all aspects of life. The bigger lesson for today, is don’t stop the ball from rolling once you have got it really rolling.
This is a common mistake people make…I have made it many times. There is a tendency, once you begin seeing some fruits from your efforts, to begin losing the focus that got you moving in the first place. In general, success breeds complacency. It’s okay to enjoy the fruits of success, but it has been my experience that people pluck the fruit too soon. Then when they realize what they have done, they feel like they are starting all over again.
So the moral of the story today, is that once you’ve developed some personal momentum in the flow of whatever you are doing, don’t stop rolling. If you have to rest, make it a short one, and one that doesn’t stop things from moving forward. Take one day off from the exercise regiment, but not two. Take one day away from your business venture, but not two. You will figure out the best way for yourself as you go, but if you aren’t aware of the tendency, you will be likely to fall prey to resting too long. So now, you are aware. Get it rolling and keep it rolling!
In this video, I share further insight into momentum and the role of compounding and lag. Remember, focus on the process in life…and the results will take care of themselves.
I hope you found this helpful. Please share with others if you believe they would benefit.
Here is a recent video on How to Design an Awesome Life
If you need some coaching reach out to me.
Many Blessings, Todd
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