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  • Writer's pictureTracey Wozny

Checking off the bucket list…

Waiting until my mid 50’s to do a marathon really wasn’t the best idea, but it was on my bucket list far too long. It was time to cross it off!

Procrastination is the delaying or postponing of something. The two most common reasons for procrastination are

  1. The fear of starting the “act.”

  2. The energy level needed to take the first step- breaking inertia.

My reason for procrastination was definitely fear of the work that lay ahead in the preparation. The small increments of consistency needed to reach a goal that would take months to prepare for seemed really hard! Not to mention the voice inside my head that said, “You can’t run 13.1 miles, you can barely finish 3.”

My community's local YMCA hosted their first half marathon event in September. The perfect opportunity was right here in my hometown and I had many of my circle of peers who were participating. There were no excuses!

I tackled the first part of overcoming procrastination, breaking inertia, and signed up to run.

The YMCA put together an accountability group called the “Running Club” to prepare for the event. A detailed training schedule with weekly workouts along with an every Saturday, LONG RUN. We started the training in May in preparation for the September event. Every Saturday the long run would add a mile so by the end of the five months we would have built up to 13 miles.

The end result looked impossible but I remembered the formula of the Compound Effect. A principle I teach my own younger students in their leadership class

The Compound Effect is the principle of small habits done repeatedly over time, consistently will yield a result.

Here are the key features of the Compound Effect:

  • Small Habits- Do not look at the top of the staircase or the end result. Focus on the small habits, one step, one stair at a time.

  • Consistency- This is difficult and a challenge, especially in this fast paced world we all live in. Even when there was a day that I couldn’t complete the workout, I would refuse to go backwards. Wipe it off and start again!

  • Over Time- This takes scheduling and prioritization. Making the mental mindshift that you will have to make the preparation ahead of time in order to reach the goal is essential. Every Sunday night I would look at the week's training ahead and calendar it in my schedule.

Last week I finished the half marathon and got to check this goal off of my bucket list. I wouldn’t have achieved this without understanding without the discipline of the Compound Effect. It is really the secret formula to success (or failure if the habits are not positive).

Small Habits + Consistency + Time= A RESULT

I feel accomplished that I reached this “bucket list” milestone that I for many years procrastinated on. I am even more grateful that I could cross the finish line with the younger upcoming leaders in our community who could visually see what the Compound Effect looks like in action.

My encouragement is that as adults we can continue to pass the important lesson on to the children of the next generation that goals are achieved one small habit, consistently, over time, Building resilience and grit!

Lead on Everyone……..


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