How much do you want it? No, really, how much do you really want it? And by it, I mean anything? Recently, I wanted to be in excellent shape like I once was when I used to box and take classes at the gym a few years back. So, I started running. But, I also started eating when I got home from work at night. It was a comfort. I’m new to D.C. and watching TV and eating snacks made me feel comfortable, at home. Guess what, I didn’t get in the shape I wanted. But, that’s not fair! I’m new here, I was hungry, I ran today, surely that counts for something, right? Nope. Nothing.
There is no easy way. You could argue that it doesn’t matter whether I weigh an additional 5 pounds more or even 10, after all, I’m pretty skinny, and an extra 5 or 10 wouldn’t make a difference to my career. But, I wanted to be in that same kind of shape I was in. So, I needed to stop the same old, same old, and do something difficult. I hired a trainer, and I work out with him twice a week. It costs me a lot of money. But, it works.
“No pain, no gain” isn’t just a saying that’s limited to the gym. It works in just about every category in your life. What would you like to do? If you are doing the ‘same old, same old’ to try and get there, and are not seeing results, then I’m here to tell you, you are wasting your time. Nothing worth having is easy. And you can’t think or wish something into existence. Nor can any excuse or justification make it all ok. You need to take tough steps that take you out of your comfort zone, or make you work harder than you ever have, or leave you out of breath.
A very sweet and talented former student of mine showed me her demo tape today. She wants to be a reporter. She took my class 2 years ago. A year ago, she showed me her demo reel. She just showed me her demo reel today, and it looks exactly the same. Now, let me be clear, this is a woman who says and has demonstrated at every turn that she wants very much to be a reporter. She is smart, and dedicated. But, this reel won’t get her a job. Not because she isn’t smart or doesn’t express herself well. It just doesn’t have the right mix of standups and stories. It’s not professional, has some fluff in it, and does her a disservice. She needs to dedicate money and time into developing a new reel, and because she hasn’t done so thus far, I’m thinking both of those – time and money – would be tough for her to devote at this stage in her life. But, without taking some steps that are tough, that take her out of her comfort zone or will leave her out of breath, she will not achieve her goal.
Part of this blog is to teach, but a lot of it is to inspire. No matter what your goal, whether you want to meet the love of your life, learn a language, lose weight, eat healthy, reach a career milestone, if you are doing the same old, same old, and are not constantly stretching yourself into new, uncharted territory, you’re not going to achieve it. As a good friend once said to me, “how’s THAT working for you?” If the answer is, “it’s not” – drop the ‘same old, same old,’ and kick it up a notch. No excuses.
That student could have two years reporting experience under her belt, rather than none. The time is now.