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Secrets of Success

Today is Not That Day

On the wall in my office are pictures of each of my Ironman triathlon finishes.

Above the pictures is a framed quote by Dane Rauschenberg, a marathon runner who in 2006 completed 52 marathons in 52 weeks.

The quote reads:

“Someday you will not be able to do this. Today is not that day.”

I turn 62 on my next birthday and love thumbing my nose at Father Time.

Now, I know none of us are “getting out of here alive,” but I love how fit I can continue to be and that quote reminds me not to give in and not to give up.

What about you?

Are there areas of your life where you have succumbed to the notion that you are simply not going to be able to have success? Are there areas where you have, for all intents and purposes, given up?

Would you like to adopt Dane’s attitude of dealing with adversity?

Why We Give Up

There are many reasons but the main one, I would suggest, is we do not have a clear goal and we have not developed a detailed plan.

At least we don’t have a plan we seem to be able to stick with long term.

For example, you might want to lose weight. You have a “goal” to be thin.

But if you haven’t defined what “thin” is, it will be hard to know when you’ve met your goal.

You may also discover you don’t have a plan beyond “eat better and exercise.”

Now you may say, “Well at least some kind of goal is better than nothing.”


Or maybe not.

Having a nebulous goal and a vague plan may do more harm than good because it creates the “illusion of movement.” This is the sense that comes when we feel we are making progress but we are actually just engaged in frenetic activity.

This combination of activity followed by no meaningful progress has a devastating effect on our confidence, which is little more than messages we give ourselves about what we believe is doable and possible.

This lack of confidence results in decreased effort followed by decreased results, and the downward spiral continues until we give up on that particular goal.

If we engage in this behavior often enough, over time it can destroy the credibility we have with ourselves. As a result, we might begin to doubt we can change much of anything in our lives and begin to see relationships, career aspirations and health concerns as things we can do little about.

What to Do?

It starts with knowing the “why” and being brutally honest.

Instead of focusing on “what” you need or want to do, ask yourself “why” you want to do it. Be brutally honest with your answer.

Do you really want to address that relationship? Do you really want to save that money? Do you really want to lose that weight?

Is so, why?

Is it really your goal? Do you think you’re supposed to do it? Do you think someone else expects you to do it? Or do you really want to do it?

The answers don’t have to be deep. It may be because you want to have the experience or you simply want to see what will happen…

Next, ask yourself “What will happen if I don’t do this?” Again be brutally honest.

If the answer is “Well really nothing will happen,” then it probably isn’t a goal you’re going to give much time to and it may be best to table the goal for now.

However, if not accomplishing the goal would have a negative effect on your life—your health could be in jeopardy, your career could be adversely affected, an important relationship would deteriorate—then you know why you need to do something.

And once you know “why” the goal is important and totally buy in, the “what” and the “how” will crystallize.

I promise.

Don’t take my word for it. Try what has been suggested and see for yourself.

You may never run 52 marathons in 52 weeks but Dane Rauschenberg’s message of perseverance may be just the message you need.

Resolve to make that change and overcome that obstacle.

And the next time you feel your doubts are going to overwhelm you you’ll be able to say, “Today is not that day.”

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CTS Consulting, Inc

3126 Berkshire Road

Baltimore, Maryland 21214

phone 410-444-5857

cell 443-286-2488