Have you ever had a great idea but never did anything with it? What is it that separates a person with a great idea from the person who turns their idea into reality? ACTION, plain and simple. Action is the only thing that separates someone with a great idea into someone who turns a great idea into a reality. So many people have great ideas but they are afraid to take action on them because they are afraid to fail. I have had all kinds of great ideas like this website or my tennis camp and I would be lying to you if I said I was not afraid to put myself out there but I decided to take action anyway. Sure I messed up a ton of stuff along the way, my old website alone looked archaic compared to this one and the instruction at tennis camp continues to get better each day. In the process I have learned a ton and taking action on ideas has become easier and easier and my ideas get bigger and bigger. For example, I will have a published book coming out on youth fitness this fall!
So you are probably wondering what does all this have to do with tennis or fitness? Well I want to share with you my recipe for getting people to stop being fearful and take action. My formula is simple, I create a sense of urgency to take action.
A very wise tennis coach by the name of Vesa Ponkka explains the environment he tries to create for developing tennis players as one where they have “plenty of time, but no time to waste.” That phrase is pure genius because it provide the two necessary things to be motivated to take action daily, yet not be crippled by the fear of failure. When someone feels a sense of urgency, like they have no time to waste, they take immediate action. When your car breaks down you have to get around so you take urgent action to get it fixed. It becomes the #1 priority. When you know someone else is working hard and is competing to beat you to the finish line it becomes very clear you cannot procrastinate and must begin taking action right now. A sense of urgency is a great motivator both short and long-term. At the same time when you know that the finish line is not in the immediate future but a far off long-range one you also feel as though you can have setbacks and failures along the way without them being detrimental to your progress. Collecting failures is a necessary part of the process, just as a baby fails many times before they can walk on their own. It is this sense of having plenty of time that diminishes the fear of failing along the way.
So if you want to lose weight, get lean, become stronger, or improve your tennis game all you really need to do is take action. Not just take action once but take action on a daily basis with a sense of urgency while at the same time realizing you have plenty of time to reach your goal and a failure or two along the way is part of the process. As Coach Vesa Ponkka says, “take action as through you have plenty of time, but no time to waste.”