Let’s take a look at a car; not the easy, straight-forward automatic but the complex, complicated manual car. There is something pretty important I want to share from it.
My Dad taught me how to drive and he started teaching me with a manual car. It looked too complicated for me. But one of the major challenges I had with the manual car was knowing exactly when to change the gears. With the automatic, just leave it on drive and the car does the rest – well, I guess that is why it is called automatic. With the manual, you have to do it all by yourself, and that seemed like a whole lot of work.
Well, my Dad taught me that there are 6 gears including the reverse, and you should always start from the slowest to the fastest depending on the road and the sound of the engine. But here is the very important part, you must always start your movement with gear 1 which is the slowest. When starting your journey, regardless of how fast the other gears are, you cannot start with them. You must start from gear 1 and this is where your momentum starts building. Trust me, even an automatic car recognizes this; it never starts with the fastest movement, it starts gradually, gets faster with each stride.
The problem a lot of us face when it comes to consistency is that we want to achieve our goals instantly. You want to do a hundred push-ups immediately, you want to run miles instantly, you want to be able to complete a book with one thousand pages immediately, or finish 5 books in one week, we do not want to start from somewhere and that becomes our undoing. Because, just like the manual car, starting your forward movement on any gear asides 1, results in a jerky movement and abrupt stop.
Momentum implies that an object remains in motion, it says very little about speed. We want to achieve great things so fast without realizing that we have got to start from somewhere. A lot of us have started stuffs and could not continue because, we did not start the ideal way. We wanted to get there fast. You want to be able to study for 5 straight hours, you immediately start pushing yourself to study for five hours; you will eventually get frustrated and stop.
You want to pray for 1 hour? You’ve got to start from somewhere and build on that. You want to be the best fashion designer the world has ever seen, you don’t start with the complex styles. You start with the basics, the simple ones and you build on them.
Never allow pressure push you to what you know you are not ready for.
Consistency is built where momentum is built. If you can be consistent in very simple things, you can move to gear 2. You will always know when you have got to move a notch. You want to be able to run a hundred miles every day? Start with a few kilometers every day, your body will recognize when it is time to take it a notch higher, when that happens, you do just that. With time, you will get to where you are going to. Even an airplane does not start from the air, it starts with a few strides on ground, builds momentum and speed and takes off at the right time. Anything other than that, it crashes.
Do not end your journey before it even gets started just because you want to get to your destination in record time.
Please note this;
The only person you are competing with in the universe is yourself. Stop trying to compete with people around you. Only strive to be better than who you were.
In this journey, you will face crooked roads; you don’t continue in gear 5 on those roads. You will either have an accident or get your vehicle damaged, ending your journey.
No matter what, you need to keep moving. It does not take speed to keep moving; it takes wisdom to know when to change your gears, when to slow down, when to pick up the pace.
Nobody recognizes the fastest man who never made it to the finish line.
Remember the story of the race between the tortoise and the dog? Funny story, but its lesson is priceless. We are not in a 100 meters dash. It is a really long marathon race that the slow and steady most times wins.
Remember that you are not competing with anyone else but yourself. You should always seek to be better than you were. But you have got to start from somewhere.
Finally, if at all your journey meets a traffic jam, it is not the end of the journey. Don’t be scared to start again. Lol… Easier said than done right? Well, maybe. But reminding yourself that that is the best way to get there will help you make the best choice.
You Are Never Alone.