When I was watching the London Marathon, it occurred to me that, whilst watching the focussed and very fit elite runners, and then the fun runners in their colourful costumes all raising money for good causes or running in memory of a loved one, that this whole field of people was very much a metaphor for life, and raises the question “are you a tortoise or a hare…?”
Are you a hare rushing through life with no plan or sense of purpose, just ignoring or feeling unresourseful when obstacles get in your way? ….. or are you a tortoise, slowly plodding along problem solving along the route and eventually getting to your target….?
Both of these characters have their good and bad points, the hare leading a carefree life embracing challenges and moving on whether the outcome be good or bad. The tortoise thoughtful and reliable planning their next move carefully, however sometimes this leads to worrying about the next move so much that you plan for so long nothing ever happens.
There is nothing ultimately bad to be said about being a hare, just enjoying life and having a bit of impulsiveness can be good for you. However, would the Hare manage the course and finish with a sense of satisfaction, or would he just rush on to the next thing without being able to celebrate success? The story ended with the tortoise winning, so the tortoise has his good points too. Planning for where you want to be in life and perhaps using the time to problem solve along the way may give the better result in the long run.
Perhaps in order to enjoy a balanced life we need to be a bit of both, like the runners in their costumes, having fun, dressed up and laughing, but with a sense of purpose and planning, they have a time target in mind and they intend to finish the course to raise as much funds as they can. They did not just get up on Marathon day and decide to run, they had to choose to do so 12 months before, planning their training and getting sponsors for their good cause. How many times during their training have they ‘hit the wall’ and felt as if they could not carry on, but with their target/outcome (running the race and finishing) in mind they (like the tortoise) plodded on until they could do the distance and achieve their target. So much of their run involved planning target distances, diet, taking part in shorter runs, in order that on the day of the London Marathon they would be able to put on their costume do the distance in the best time for them and just enjoy the atmosphere, feeling the support of the crowds, and having fun (like the hare).
At some points in our life, and perhaps the Spring is a good time, we need to review where we are and where we want to be in 12 months. If things are as we want them, can we make them even better? If you find however that you are not where you want to be then how can you change. Obviously what you are doing is not working, so how do you get what you want?
Perhaps like the marathon runner (or tortoise), you could plan specific, achievable, targets in order to get to your ultimate goal, or what you want and deserve from your life. This plan may involve the longer haul, but unless you start to make those changes NOW, things will not change. So get yourself a pen and paper NOW and ask yourself the following questions:-
Am I happy with my life/relationship?
- How can I improve things?
- What is the first thing that I could do to start that change now?
- and the next….? and the next……?
Write down the first 4 or 5 actions you could take. It may be investigating enrolling on a course to re-train, or perhaps sitting down and talking to a partner, but there is something YOU CAN DO NOW to make changes for the better.
If you find that you are finding excuses not to change, “I can’t do it”…. “I am not smart/brave enough” then ask yourself why you are already making excuses for failure? Perhaps talking to a coach or mentor would help you to move past these excuses, but you may find that just questioning your own excuses and why you make them would start to shift your focus and move you towards the future you want. So why not be a Hare and START RIGHT NOW, this is not the time to be a tortoise and plod along, change only starts when you start to make it. Get the life you want and deserve by asking yourself what you need to do to get it. Then you can become the Tortoise and plan your moves one step at a time using both in order to achieve success.
If I can help you to move yourself towards the future (or present) that you want/deserve then give me a call and arrange your FREE consultation to discuss this further