Are you Coasting?
Hope you are well and getting your stride on in the second quarter of the year. How time flies.
A huge welcome to all new graduates of the Vision Board Workshop. I hope you find these newsletters a welcomed addition to your development process.
Today, I’d like to discuss the topic of coasting. Just a word that has been reverberating in my brain as one’s brain does. So I have a question for you. Are you coasting? The dictionary defines coasting as moving easily without using power. Does this describe your current state of play?
This subject was precipitated by my daughter. She started swimming lessons in a much bigger pool than she’s been used to. She moved from a fairly small pool that was predominantly shallow to one that was fairly deep and two times the length she is used to; with the added presence of tougher instructors.
After a couple of weeks at level 2, her tutor recommended that she move up a level as she was much further ahead than others in the group. They were also spending time teaching her techniques advanced for the group which was affecting the time they had to teach the rest of the group. In order words, get out of our group.
I thought my daughter would be pleased to move up so quickly. It shows growth, determination, strength, etc. However, surprisingly, she burst into tears and said she wasn’t ready to move on. The instructor gave us the option of staying until she was ready to leave (how very British) so I decided to leave her in the group until she was ready.
However, the following week, I watched her out-swimming everyone in her group with the result that she spent a lot of time waiting for others to catch up. I thought to myself, she is coasting! This girl is happily coasting and feeling cool about it. I moved her up to the next level immediately, despite the protests and sulks. This was not parenting by consultation anymore, it was total authoritative, helicopter parenting.
I think it’s pretty obvious why I did this. She is not going to develop any new skills at that level. She will be lulled into a false sense of security about her ability when she is only swimming with people she is better than. She is also wasting my money remaining at a level she has outgrown.
It is very easy to coast. Even easier to think you are progressing when all you are doing is actually standing still. Let’s not settle for average. The risk is that the moment I say this, your mind might leap to a grand gesture. It’s not really about that. It’s about stretching yourself. It could be simply networking more. You might be shy and apprehensive about socialising with others who can help your career or business. Committing an hour a week to hanging out with the right people could increase your visibility. Your default might be to coast – because it’s comfortable- but you choose to challenge yourself and act.
I asked myself these questions and I would recommend you ask yourself too.
Am I coasting? Am I stretched where I am? Am I playing safe or am I challenging myself to take risks and grow? Am I too comfortable where I am? Am I settling for a few good results instead of reaching out for my ultimate destination? Am I fighting against the limitations placed on me by others? Am I giving my dream my all?