The American poet and educator Henry Wadsworth Longfellow said “Great is the art of beginning, but greater is the art of ending.”
A marathon like the famous one in NYC is a fantastic metaphor for life and how to accomplish what you want. It begins with a commitment, after which you must prepare and discipline yourself with dedication and enthusiasm. You must travel lean — lighten your load of physical, mental and/or emotional baggage along the way. There will be moments where you feel you can’t go on, but someone, even a complete stranger, will say or do something that will spur and cheer you on. You must have faith in yourself and know there is indeed light at the end of the tunnel.
I have a client who, after being laid off from his corporate job, realized he wanted to have his own business to be more in control his future. With a deep belief in himself and a lot of trial and error, blood, sweat and tears, a year and a half later he is now a top national producer. He keeps his eye on the prize, paces himself, and with stamina and persistence is able to get the job done (and continued group coaching to stay on track, stay balanced and gain support!).
Even with the uncertainty that owning a business brings, he is infinitely happier than when he was working 9–5 with a steady paycheck. Because he knew what he wanted, made the internal decision, and took the necessary external steps, he now reaps the immediate and tangible results of his efforts.
Whether a tortoise or a hare, slow and steady generally wins the race, no matter how long it takes. As long as you start and finish it there is satisfaction because the journey is just as significant, if not more so, than the goal. The important thing is not to compare yourself to others — because we are all at different places in this marathon called life; you need to know your personal best in whatever area you are focusing on.
No one can run that race for you, but whether beginner or pro, give me a buzz and I’ll be a super-coach to get you to the finish line via the most direct and satisfying route, guiding, cheering and providing some motivational Gatorade every step of the way!
Originally published on www.kristinaleonardi.com November 9, 2010
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Check out this very-roughly-edited-not-the-best-quality video of uninterrupted remarks wrapping up the workshop “Lead Yourself to Success (in Work & Life!)” In this excerpt covering the final ten minutes, I summarize my thoughts about confidence, being a leader in your own life, maintaining your individuality and humanity in the times we live in, and why the world is relying on you to be successful.
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