“Many ignore what they don’t want to deal with.
Ignoring doesn’t change things.
It doesn’t make them go away.”
Last Saturday, I was at swimming lessons for my children
in the local sports centre.
My son Sam, who’s seven, got held back a level from last May
and wasn’t too happy about it.
‘Why can’t I go to the other group?’, asked Sam.
‘Because you’re not ready yet Sam.’, replied my wife, Judy.
‘And the reason is because you’re not listening to the teacher.
He’s trying to help you get better but you’re ignoring him.’
Sam had formed the interesting habit of putting his head underwater whenever the instructor
would try to help him – naturally the instructor lost interest.
(It’s been quite funny to watch though…)
My wife, Judy, explained this to Sam and he listened intently.
It seemed that he was going to change his ways.
and for the first half of the class, last Saturday, he did.
He listened and kept his head above water.
And he made some improvements.
But half-way through, his old habit kicked in.
As soon as the instructor tried to give him some advice he
looked at him with his big brown eyes, and slowly went under-water
– picture a young hippo gradually disappearing into the pool.
The instructor just shook his head.
2 things occur to me:
1. Getting to the next level in anything requires help, advice
and changing habits – but how open are you to getting help?
Maybe like Sam, you’re putting your head under the water.
He wants to go to the next level but he’s holding himself back.
2. Old habits die hard, new habits require repetition.
It’s always tempting to fall back into old habits – that’s why
having someone, a class or a group hold you accountable can be priceless
when it comes to installing new positive habits.
It’ll be interesting to see how Sam evolves over the coming weeks.
Something tells me his desire to get to the next level will
keep kicking in and force him to take the ‘pain’ of the instructors advice….
Food for thought.
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