Just because you have been doing something for a long time doesn’t mean you are doing it right. It seems that, whatever it is, there is always someone discovering another way to do it better, easier, or with more style. We long to improve and succeed yet so often we get in our own way, unable, or unwilling to change.
For instance, a friend of mine who has been cycling for years was recently insulted when a fellow cycler gave her some really useful tips. She was under the impression that her way was the best because she had been doing it for so long. But while she had been asleep at the wheel (or in this case, the handlebars), others had been challenging themselves, researching new technology and finding new ways to be more productive and efficient in their technique. Ironically, the correction she received was a way to engage her core strength to gain more power.
Creating core strength (in our bodies and our minds) is something we need to work on every day. Everything we do starts at our center and expands outward. But as we change and grow, our center shifts.
Sometimes life can feel like a rocking boat in which we are trying to remain standing.
The desire to remain upright comes naturally. But if we were to examine what it takes, we’d see that creativity, agility and knowing where to shift our weight at any given moment all come into play. So how is a business any different than a person when in that boat?
Every day I talk to people who are rethinking almost everything they have ever know to remain upright in business. Most of them come out better for it. But for every 10 who thrive, there is one who gives up the struggle on that boat and simply waits for the tide to carry it out. They aren’t afraid to fail. They are afraid to succeed.
Success means work, and sometimes, as in the case of my cycling friend, developing new muscles in order to work more effectively. Testing oneself may hurt, but the resulting inner strength is so much more fulfilling than atrophy. As always, there is a Chinese proverb that sums all this up: Failure is not falling down, but refusing to get up.