I recently heard somebody say, “Nobody else knows what I intended to do. They only know what I didn’t do.” That statement summarizes a life of regrets. It’s a history. It represents years of choices to nowhere. And it encapsulates a private pain of dashed hopes and dreams. The gap between intentions and actions is painfully large. And while there are plenty of ideas out there on how to close that gap, let me give you three insights that need to accompany your gap-closing journey:
1. Take an Imperfect First Step – Sometimes I think this is the biggest barrier we face. We take so much time thinking about our intentions that we never take a first step. Perhaps it’s because we think our first step has to be perfect. It doesn’t! Start somewhere…today.
2. Give Yourself Permission to Fail – Failure WILL be a part of your journey in closing your growth gaps. Not might, not could be, not hope it isn’t…failure WILL accompany you. The difference between people who are considered successes and people who are deemed failures is how they view and respond to failures. One learns from failures and leverages them for future growth while the other let’s failure define who they are.
3. Value a Growth Attitude over a Growth Goal – I’m all in favor of setting growth goals, mapping out a plan to reach them, and inviting others to hold me accountable. But more than growth goals, I’m committed to a growth attitude. Both are important, but the attitude is what empowers the goal to be reached, and it’s the engine that drives lifelong learning.
Don’t camp yourself in the land of regrets. Start somewhere, don’t worry about failure, and cultivate an attitude that will help you to keep moving forward.
Question: Which of these three insights is your biggest challenge?