We are what we repeatedly do

british-endurance-athlete-mark-beaumont-cycling-through-mongolia

In yesterday’s post, I wrote around the phrase:

How you do anything is how you do everything

The post asked of each of us the question: “what do your actions say about your Leadership?”, considering that everything we do is indicative of who we are, our values mirror our behaviours, our actions speak louder than our words.

From this, a risk is that we could consider that who we are and how we behave our fixed and set. However, I am a proponent of the concept of Growth Mindset (see a post with a mindset questionnaire you can try here).

If we accept the concept of Growth Mindset, we can always improve, we can always change, grow, evolve.

To do this, part of this is repetition. An obvious one for me is my own writing journey. I can feel myself growing as a writer and in my writing as I continue to write daily week after week and month after month.

I’ve also focussed this summer on my physical wellbeing, eating well, sleeping to a routine, exercising diligently. Today I went for my regular session with my trainer and they noted that I was markedly stronger than I have been.

In a way, that felt surprising, as my performance had suddenly jumped.

So, today two tips around growth and improvement in the field of athletic performance.

First, growth is never a straight line in any field, and particularly for athletes. They can plateau for long periods and it is rarely clear when this plateau will end and the upward improvement path will continue. Today I suddenly improved and it was unexpected.

Second, and linked to having the grit, the “stick-to-it-ness” to keep at it through plateaux, to grow, to evolve, to excel to higher heights, a key element is repetition and routine. Simply get out there and do it, and do it repeatedly.

The photo above is of my inspiring friend Mark Beaumont cycling across a seemingly endless plateau in Mongolia last year on his way to smashing the round the world cycling record. His plan was simple. Ride at 15 miles an hour, 18 hours a day, allow a little time for transits and contingencies and break the 80 days mark. He did it, and boy what grit that took! (see post here)

I leave you with this mantra:

We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit.
~ Will Durant