and it taught me about reaching goals in a way no book or speaker could
I took a bike ride today. I am an occasional rider, it’s just for fun and fresh air for me.
This is my awesome Townie bike with its big fat tires.
I admit, I sometimes make choices that favor form over function.
That bike is so fun looking!
But it is not built for efficiency. It has big fat tires.
It is very heavy.
And you sit up tall in the perfect position to catch all the wind like a giant sail. ⛵️
I determined before leaving the house that I would ride for one hour. I didn’t know how far I would go, but I knew I wanted one hour of exercise.
Dang it’s really windy.
How is there a headwind no matter which direction I ride!!??
Is this ride uphill the whole feckin way??
OK, I live in Florida, so there is no such thing as a hill. But it feels uphill the whole way.
My tires must be flat.
My legs are on fire. 🔥
Maybe I should just go hang out at the coffee bar.
If I had not set my goal (ride for one hour) before leaving the house, I absolutely would have turned around after 10 minutes.
That ride felt like I was riding uphill through wet cement.
I know a one hour bicycle ride is hardly a significant accomplishment. The significance of it is that it tuned into an analogy for me.
I’m human, I prefer things that seem easy. It was really tempting to call it quits.
But I hung in there.
I hung in there because I had a Clear idea of what I wanted to accomplish.
When the going gets tough, changing your mind can look really appealing.
When you don’t have a clear and committed idea of where you want to go or what you want to do, it is easy to take detours that look irresistible at the moment.
From your diet, to your career, to what you do for fun, get clear on what you want. Write it down and look at it every day.
There is a lot of noise around us. We have so many choices, it is easy to get distracted and be pulled from our goals.
I applaud people for both big and small accomplishments, It takes discipline to stay on track!
Sticking with it can sometimes feel like you are making sacrifices.
It might mean years of training, trying things and failing, or saying no at times to opportunities that look fun.
Without a clear destination, the temptation to turn back when the going gets tough becomes really strong.
“If you don’t know where you are going, any road will get you there.” Lewis Carroll
I’ve stumbled plenty of times setting goals.
How to Not Make the Same Goal Setting Mistakes I Made
But not today. My morning ride turned out to be an analogy for reaching goals. I had to think about something as my legs were burning!
As always, I wish you all the best!
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I Took a 1 Hour Fat Tired Bicycle Ride into a Feckin Nonstop Headwind was originally published in The Ascent on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story.