We recently came upon this inspirational story about the British Rowing team reaching their challenging goal. Before the 2000 Olympics, seeing they hadn’t won a gold medal since 1912, they had only three decisions:
- Continue their usual strategies
- Give up completely
- Take a chance on something different
They chose the latter because they had a passion for success and knew that staying in their comfort zone was not going to take them anywhere they hadn’t been. Their new strategy was simple, but also tough. While training for the event, they questioned themselves the same question before making any decision. Will the boat go faster? This yes/no question pushed them to train harder, to focus on their goal, and to avoid distractions and unhealthy behaviour like having that pint of beer. And it worked! They took home the goal medal after an 88 year drought.
This goes back to the concept of implementation intention, which prompts goal seekers to set a plan making the end results more achievable. It also helps to prepare for the worst to achieve the best. Many people have goals and an idea of what they want for their future, but very few people take action – it’s so easy to get caught up in the day to day. While we must live in the present moment, we should set some time aside to craft our future and set a plan to help get there. It might just require one simple question to guide you in your present day decision making.
At the end of the day, achieving your goal requires courage and perseverance. Like the British Rowing Club, stepping out of your comfort zone and trying something different is always worth a shot as it usually leads to success. And if success doesn’t come straight away, the lesson learned will soon take you there!