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Getting things done at Your Pace

Baby steps - doing things at your own Pace

Do you find it daunting when others expect you to have the ability to go at your goals full tilt? When they say things like "if you were serious, you'd ..." all without considering whether or not you are in the same fortunate position as they are? It can be difficult enough to maintain motivation and forward momentum for your goal when you have limiting factors to overcome on the way, without being judged in this manner.

My coaching style has always been the caring way, to incorporate kindness and understanding of the real life obstacles people have to face. And while I believe in it, I rather assumed people would look upon my way as a bit weak. Until, that is, I read a piece written by a high energy, high achieving coach, who I admire very much. One reason I hold him in such high esteem is that he not only talks the talk, he walks the walk - he makes his goals public every year (and there's a lot of them). He not only publicly updates both successes and failures, but also what's he's learned from the failures.

The particular learning he shared recently was that going all out, giving it his all, wasn't necessarily the right way to achieve everything every time. Last year, he'd set a goal - to run the London Marathon in under 4 hours. He'd trained hard and intensively, he did everything "right", yet missed his goal by 2 minutes. Instead of giving up on his goal, he decided to try a different training method. This time, he went at it slow and steady. Despite it going entirely against his hugely competitive nature, he stuck with it. Although the London Marathon wasn't run this year due to Covid-19, he ran a solo marathon - and he broke 4 hours.

The lesson he shared is one that we could all do with learning: that it's important to do things at your own pace, at a pace you can achieve and maintain. However hard it can be to watch others race ahead - whatever the race might be - accept other people are going at their own pace, the one they can achieve and (hopefully) maintain. And that's what each and everyone of us needs to do too.

My body and my spirit have suffered from decades of depression and comfort eating, from a metabolism that has been messed up by yo-yo dieting and post-cancer hormone medication - but if I keep going at my own pace, rather than casting envious looks at younger and fitter individuals, I know I will achieve my goals.

Don't be put off from making goals and dreaming just because you can't go full tilt at them. Slow progress is still progress. Be true to yourself, maintain your own pace - life isn't a race, it's for living well.

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