When someone is hollering at you “You can DO this, I KNOW you’ve got this, do it for the TEAM.” It’s hard … very hard to let them down. Those are the words I heard 34 years ago at Redstone Arsenal, AL as my 1st Sgt rooted me on during our annual Physical Training Test. Each year the Army checks your strength and endurance to see if you are fit to serve. At that time we had to maintain the minimum standard in 3 categories: sit-ups, pushups and a 2 mile run. During this test I reached the full 100 points each for sit-ups and push-ups and if I finished the run under the minimum standard time I’d get 100 points for that as well and max out my PT test. When I rounded the track for the 3rd time, my 1st Sergeant kept hollering at me, I couldn’t believe it. If I could keep up this pace I might actually do it, the thought had never entered my mind! WOW! During the last lap I remember a few friends chiming in and really pushing me to keep going. My lungs felt like they were going to burst, I was running for all I had! Looking back I remember thinking that I was going so fast that I must have looked like one of those cartoon characters, you know the ones where their arms and legs are going around so fast they look like a pinwheel ha ha. I’m sure I wasn’t quite that fast but it’s fun to remember it that way. All these years later I remember how it felt when I crossed the finish line, I did it! I maxed my PT test and I was the only female that year to do it. I got a medal for it along with two male soldiers that had done the same. I felt SO accomplished!
A year later as I ran with my company through the rice patties and villages of South Korea, I got challenged again. It seemed the cadence leader was also the tallest and most in shape guy they could find and he set the pace! YIKES! Often there were people that couldn’t keep up and would “fall out”. Our 1st Sgt noticed and asked if I would pace set for the company because I had never fallen out. He thought the slower people could keep up with me and the faster ones wouldn’t feel as if they were walking. I remember my 1st instinct was to say “Oh no, no, no, I can’t possibly do that, I’m not a runner, I actually HATE running and I’m so short!” But then I remembered the WIN I’d had back in AL, and how my then 1st Sgt had believed in me too. He got me to do something I didn’t think I could. So I became the pacesetter for our company, I felt great mentally AND physically and it was a Win-Win for everyone!
When was that last time you had “Just One Win”? One time that you believed in yourself or had someone else believe in you and you accomplished something you didn’t think you could? Remember the WIN the next time things get tough, rely on that confidence and strength you gained from getting just that one WIN! When was the last time you cheered someone else on to achieve something they didn’t think they could? To get just one WIN?
If you can’t remember either, it’s time to get moving! Do something that stretches you, something that challenges you, anything that will feel AH-MAZING to you when you get it done! Encourage someone else to go for it, reach for the stars, complete something they’ve been working on and may have been struggling with. Just one WIN is the difference you need to launch your self-confidence through the roof. Then see what you can do!
Here’s to winning,
7 Strategies to Magnify℠
The 7 MAGNIFY strategies help you steer your leadership journey personally and professionally to a place where you can manage and even THRIVE! Everything laid out here for you are steps, thoughts, quotes and approaches that have helped me guide people to LEAD better, LIVE bigger and LOVE their lives more!