“It is not given to me to know how many steps are necessary in order to reach my goal . . . never do I know how close it lies until I turn the corner.” Og Mandino
Isn’t it funny how the exact lessons that we need are presented to us – and are presented again and again as we need them. The progression is designed exactly as we need it – from Habits to Love to Persistence. Persistence is where we start digging in to do the work . . . .not that the rest of it hasn’t been work, but this is the point in the road when the road is long. Sometimes there are bumps, sometimes the road gets wet or even a little foggy.
I’ll never forget riding my bike in Bar Harbor, Maine on an October weekend years ago. I was new to serious riding, but as a group we decided we wanted to ride up Cadillac Mountain. Cadillac is the tallest peak on the East Coast, and I had driven up the road at least once in my life, but biking brings a whole new perspective. As we started up the road, the fog started to roll in. All we knew was up.
One pedal push after another, no way to tell how far we had come or how far we had to go. Up the road, around the corner, up the road, around the corner. It got so thick at one point I’m not sure we could see more than 3 feet in front of our bikes. Up the road, around the corner, up the road around the corner. I never panicked. I never lost faith. I never doubted my ability to succeed – even though I couldn’t see the goal or know how much longer we would be climbing up the mountain.
Why does where we are now in the MKMMA remind me of this first serious bike ride? I had no way of knowing where I was in relationship to achieving my goal. The excitement of the beginning had worn off, and the exhilaration of the finish was elusive.I knew that I needed to put in the work, and the work was very simple. Just stay the course. Eventually we reached the top, and as promised, it was just around the corner. And well worth the hard work. I also learned it was not just about me reaching the GOAL, it was about ME reaching the goal – the lessons I learned along the way and who I learned that I am in persisting toward that goal – have taken me much farther than I ever dreamed – that’s the true value planting the seeds that flourish.
Sometimes it’s better not to know. Not to know how close or how far from the goal we are. But the work that needs to be done comes into very clear focus the longer that we persist towards our goals. The important thing is not to lose track of the ultimate goal, and not to allow other things get in the way.
At the end of the day, we follow the compass, we look clearly through the magnifying glass and we keep the main thing the main thing.