Many people avoid doing new things because they appear to be difficult. It is human nature to get into a routine in life and remain there because we are comfortable. When it comes to building a better body, getting into shape, changing your diet, and adopting an overall better wellness lifestyle, most people feel intimidated or uncertain about where to start and simply just don’t get started. They look at others who are doing what they would like to be doing and look on with admiration, but can’t see themselves doing what those others are doing.
I heard a great quote years ago, but cannot remember who said it. They said, “All masters were once disasters.” Think about that. It’s true. Think of anyone in any field, and no matter how great they are now, they were, at one time, horrible. Michael Jordan could not dribble a basketball at one time. There was a time when Tiger Woods did not even know how to swing a golf club. And what about you? There was a time when you could not walk or talk. And look at you now.
All greatness has to start somewhere. In the beginning, it never looks pretty. For those of you who learned how to drive a car using a stick shift, remember that experience? This is one of the best examples I can think of to show you how you can get good at something even though you stink at it initially. You had to put your right foot on the brake and your left foot on the clutch. You had your left hand on the steering wheel and your right hand on the shifter. You pushed the shifter up and to the left into first gear. You had to think about every move carefully. Next, you took your right foot off the brake and put it gently on the gas. Now you had to apply a little bit of pressure on the gas pedal at the same time you were letting off pressure on the clutch. If you put too much pressure on the gas, you would hear the engine start to rev. If you let off the clutch too quickly, the car would start to jerk forward and back, and completely stall out if you let out the clutch too quickly.
I remember my first few outings with a stick shift. And whoever was in the car with me probably won’t forget either. I also know that I can now get into any car and drive it smoothly without giving it any thought at all. And you can too.
This is the way it is with everything in life. We all stink at things when we first try them. The more we do these things, the better we get. It takes time and repetition to become a master. The key to becoming successful in any area is taking the first step. You have to try.
I remember being in the gym and not knowing what weights to use or what exercises to do. I remember being in the grocery store wandering aimlessly around not knowing what foods were the best for me. I remember not knowing what a truly healthy lifestyle was. I also remember reading hundreds of books, listening to hundreds of audio programs, going to seminars, spending time with experts, asking lots of questions, and applying what I learned.
I think it was Leonardo Divinci that said something to the effect of “If people knew how many hours it took to master my skills, they wouldn’t think my work is so exceptional.” There was a first time Michael Jordan picked up a basketball. There was a first time Tiger Woods picked up a golf club. It doesn’t matter how little you know or how unhealthy you are, you can become an expert, and it can become easier to be healthy. You just have to take the first step. And as you look on in awe or envy of someone doing something great, thinking that you could never do that, remember that quote… “All masters were once disasters.”