Introduce, Intensify, Adapt, Shift. It’s what I did as a member of the CAL Track and Field team. I’m not entirely sure that I understood the concept when I started. I thought it was much more complicated, but soon learned it was simple. If I wanted to improve, I would never be comfortable. For just when I thought I had a handle on pace, the workout would intensify. And, just when I thought I could handle the level of intensity, the challenge shifted. At the end of each cycle, right when I thought I had things mastered, my coach would force me off a ledge.
This is rarely the case in life. True, we each work towards individual goals, be they professional, personal or other. Unfortunately, there isn’t always someone there to push us from the ledge when things get comfortable. There may, however, be a nagging inner voice, one that seems, often times, contradictory. In one moment, it’s courageous, fueling increased ambition. In the next, it’s fearful, cautioning slow and calculated steps into the unknown. One thing is for sure, the move from our comfort zones is necessary for change. We grow the most when we are forced to adapt.
As you move forward this week towards accomplishing your goals, be thankful for the challenge and the rush of accomplishing that of which you are uncertain. And, as always, remember that you are capable of much more than you can imagine. There are innumerable stories that serve to inspire, Manteo Mitchell’s 4×4 race despite injury, Barack Obama’s ascendance to the Presidential post despite cultural obstacles, or Gabrielle Gifford’s recovery after the shooting in 2011, just to name a few. But, if you take a chance and move out of your comfort zone, one day you will find inspiration in your own story.