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Stuck in a habit that you’d like to break? Not going where you want to go in your career? Not making progress in your relationships? Maybe you didn’t get the promotion at work, or the raise that you deserved. Maybe you’re not connecting with your spouse, or your kids just won’t listen to you.
Have you tried everything you can think of, but nothing seems to work? It just feels like you’re missing out on something important, something that other people seem to already know. What’s missing? If you could just figure it out, you could move forward in life.
Have you ever heard the expression, “If you do what you’ve always done, you’ll get what you’ve always gotten?” Something needs to change. We can’t expect to get better results if we’re not willing to change how we do things. Forward progress requires growth.
For most of us, it’s not a question of if we want to change, but how. We want a better tomorrow. We have desires, dreams, and hopes. Maybe we have a habit we want to break. Or a goal we want to reach. Or a skill we want to develop.
We know instinctively that if we want our life to be different, we have to become different. In other words, we need to grow.
And unlike your physical height, your growth as a person is within your control; you can do something about it. Isn’t that a relief? Each of us can grow and improve. If you choose to grow, and commit to taking steps of growth daily, you will be on your way to reaching your potential. If you keep learning and growing every day over the course of many years, you will be astounded by how far it will take you.
But I’m not saying that growth is always easy. It takes time, and it requires us to change. And that can be hard. But the rewards of growth far outweigh the sacrifices. When we commit to growing, we open the door to a meaningful life. We get the chance to make a positive impact on our world.
It’s said that when Spanish composer-cellist Pablo Casals was in the final years of his life, a young reporter asked him, “Mr. Casals, you are 95 years old and the greatest cellist that ever lived. Why do you still practice six hours a day?” What was Casals’ answer? “Because I think I’m making progress.” That’s the kind of dedication you need to have for continual growth.
The people who reach their potential, no matter what their profession or background, think in terms of improvement. If you think you can “hold your ground” and still make the success journey, you are mistaken. You need to have an attitude like that of General George Patton. It’s said that he told his troops, “There is one thing I want you to remember. I don’t want to get any messages saying we are holding our position. We are advancing constantly.” Patton’s motto was, “Always take the offensive. Never dig in.”
Think about the transformation that could occur if you chose to grow, and did something to grow a little each day. You could increase your impact on the world and live a more fulfilling life, every day.
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