Ahhh... keen to see how the story ends, are you?

The statement I was talking about was this...

“...you can't change, and stay the same while you do it.”

Okay, it's true, the statement may not appear to be a mind-blowing revelation, but as I re-read it for the third and fourth time, I couldn't help but nod in agreement and wonder if the writer hadn't stumbled across a 'secret' powerful enough to turn your worst failure into your best success...

Can I ask you to do something? Try to identify one thing you've wanted to accomplish for a while, but haven't as yet been able to achieve. Keep it simple if you can: losing a few kilos, paying off debt, more time with the kids, working less, etc. (my wife said more time in the garden).

Got it? If so then ask yourself this: what did you give up to get it? If the answer is nothing, then you've made the mistake of attempting change while staying the same as you did so.

See, change implies giving something up (literally - changing), yet all too often we want the result without paying the price to get it. This brings me to one of my favourite sayings:

“The more you do of what you've done, the more you'll get of what you've got.”

Now let's do another exercise. This time think of a situation when you've achieved a significant success: sporting accomplishment, receiving an award, promotion, pay increase, good investing outcome, got married, etc.

As you think about it, can you identify how you changed to position yourself for success? Took a risk, worked harder, studied more, etc.

It appears to me that you already know how to be successful, but that you have either not realised it, or else forgotten it. What's the secret? I've already told you! It's:

“...you can't change, and stay the same while you do it.”

Friend, success isn't only for the fortunate few. It's yours for the taking too - but not until you decide that your future is more important than the past, and that your character is more important than your comfort.

How much time do you spend on improving your character? How does that compare with the time you spend on your comfort?

Perhaps the motivation you're looking for can be summed up in a personal revelation I had during a tough time in my life:

“People give up when the pain of going forward is greater than the pain of going backwards.”

Either way there's pain - but if you push through there is pleasure. Retreat and at best there is comfort, and no one achieved greatness from a position of comfort!

I hope this short story and few handy quotes have provided food for thought and maybe even a little motivation or desire to 'raise the bar' in your life - perhaps for a minute, maybe even for an hour. More long-lasting results will require your input, and a commitment to develop your character by being brave enough to not stay the same anymore.

God bless,

- Steve McKnight

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