Malcolm Gladwell, in his book Outliers, popularized the notion of the 10,000-hour rule: Those who dedicate that much time to their craft rise to the top.
I recalled that maxim while sharing the platform with long-distance swimmer Diana Nyad in New York last week. At 63 years of age, she is still in training to make her fifth attempt at swimming from Cuba to Florida. A life-long athlete, her power of self-discipline is astounding. One small indicator: Since her early teens, she’s committed to doing 1,000 sit-ups every day. And not once did she ever do 999. I don’t know about you, but I can’t tell you how many times I’ve sat down to watch TV and said, I’m going to do 10 push-ups and 30 crunches, only to hear myself crunching on potato chips instead.
Don’t get me wrong – there are areas of my life where I am disciplined. As someone who used to be 50 lbs. heavier, I know that even one consistent habit practiced over the course of a week, a month, a year, compounds to outrageous results. As someone who used to doubt her strengths and skills every day, I know that changing just one thought, one belief compounds to taking more healthy risks.
Yes, I’m a motivational speaker, but I’ll never ask you to do anything I’m unwilling to. What am I saying? I’ll never suggest you do 1,000 sit-ups daily. But consider, what is one small behavior that will move you closer to your truth that you can begin to do consistently? Inspire the rest of us by sharing below your commitment or one of your past successes.