Are You Making Progress?

You have to be willing to make a change if you expect to see progress.  You cannot continue to do the same things in the same way and expect a different result.  The irony of this is that things are always changing whether you want them to or not.  Either you or your environment (or both) will always be changing in some way.  So the key is to control the changes and how they effect you.  You want to use the inevitable changes to advance you in a desired direction.

Progress is not always easy.  And while change may be inevitable, progress is not.  Progress requires focus, effort, and a lot of planning.  It also requires pushing through the difficult, non-glamorous times when nothing seems to be happening the way you want it to.  Progress is not about speed, it’s about direction.  The faster the progress, the less likely it is to last in all too many cases.  As difficult as it may seem, try not to get too caught up in the pace.  A good speed for you to accomplish your goals will have little or nothing to do with what others are doing.

Often I’ve seen people trying to match the success of others.  They’ll see a certain look or status and want to be there now.  If that person achieved those results quickly, chances are they have a very unique genetic or bio-physical advantage that others simply won’t be able match even if they follow their “secret” diets and workout plans to the tee.  More likely, it took a fair amount of time for them to reach that point, and it will take that amount of time, or more, for you and most others to do the same.  And that’s just fine!  Your pace is your pace. You have your own unique set of circumstances.  You may have a further or more difficult road to travel.  You may not ever have the perfect set of conditions to maximize success.  Just keep learning, adapting, and trying to move forward.

Sometimes progress is just standing still and not losing ground.  Sometimes progress is simply losing as little ground as possible.  Sometimes it’s doing things the wrong way so that you can then discover the right way.  Your journey will be unique to you.  You are individual and special.  No one else will see exactly what you see or feel exactly how you feel.  But you are not alone.  Just as there are others that you look up to, there will be many who will look up to you in time.  It’s all relative.

Expect the inevitable changes as they come and try to direct them as best as you can.  Enjoy the progress you make and be excited to discover the progress you haven’t been able to find just yet.  Be ready to take that one more path, climb that next hill, or reach for that next opportunity even when it hasn’t yet shown itself.  Because it will.  Because the next change is already on its way.  And by knowing this, you will be ready to turn one of those changes into the opportunity you’ve been waiting for.

Photo: Terry Goodlad

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