It's Tuesday, and I've a hundred unfinished ideas that are not ready for a post, but it's Tuesday and it's my day for a post; so I'll write, and I'll keep my word, and I'll win my game.
Because here's the thing. Even if this isn't my best work, getting it out is how I win. And I'm learning that winning is what keeps me going and playing harder and better next time. And one of my games is to post once a week.
Another of the games I am playing right now is rowing three million meters this Concept2 ranking year, which runs May 1 to April 30. I took it on last year as well, and failed miserably. Last year I started alright, but every time I missed a day, three million loomed larger until I gave up. I ended last year just over a million meters.
So I changed the game this year and broke it down a little. You see three million meters is less than fifty eight thousand meters a week. For me that's just a little more than four hours of exercise a week. I figured if I row three or four times a week I can come pretty darn close; so I made the game rowing three times a week, and put the three million meters in the back of my mind, but not really.
I fell behind. I'd been pushing to catch up. I was really close, but then I missed a day last week. And then I gave myself permission to miss another day, and then I noticed it. I made it mean something that I missed that day. I entertained a story that I'm not cut out to win this game. And I noticed something about habits.
I've rowed 132 days out of 216 so far this ranking year. That's three out of five days, way better than the three out of seven I set out to row. They say you can form a habit in three weeks. You'd think six months in and I wouldn't have what to worry about. But the doing is only a part of the habit. If it doesn't come with believing I am a doer, it just won't stick. And that's what was missing. For all the action, I was still entertaining a story that I just can't.
It seems pretty ridiculous. I don't give up tooth-brushing if I miss a day. I don't stop playing backgammon if I lose a game. I don't even go back to smoking if I have a cigarette. But if I'm not careful, I still allow myself to entertain these conversations. I allow myself to get caught up in the bigness of three million meters (and the knowledge I lost this game once before) and stop playing.
And as I look through my life, there are plenty of examples of where I stumbled and gave up. But now I am wiser, and I am a little better at seeing the stories that keep me down.
We all have a stories like this. They are lurking in what we say about money, relationships, work, aging, being too young, you name it. And that's where I come in. I invite you to take a look in your own life. What are you tolerating? Where did you give up? Where do you want to win? Why aren't you doing what it takes? Think about it, and if you're tired of what's so, and want to create something new, I can help you do that.