Lockport Union-Sun & Journal Online

Opinion

February 7, 2014

DAVIS: Changing your life begins with one step.

(Continued)

Lockport Union-Sun & Journal — I’ll admit, the whole thing sounds a little childish and no, you won’t become fluent in Spanish by cartoon owl alone, but the point I want to make is that “bettering yourself” or “making a life change” doesn’t have to be a painful experience; in fact I think it should be the opposite.

When I hear people talk about how it takes 10,000 hours to learn a new skill or so many days to change a habit my mind immediately goes to how daunting and exhausting that sounds. Say you had a goal of “learning to be the best at speed eating chocolate bars.” Nothing difficult about eating candy, I wish I could do it all day. Now imagine having to sit down and spend 10,000 hours eating candy bars. What if you just practiced two hours a day every day for 5,000 days would it be better? No matter how you slice it, looking at learning something new or reaching a goal by keeping your eyes on the finish line is a recipe for giving up. You don’t climb Mount Everest by staring down the peak; you do it by focusing on the step in front of you.

People say the hardest step to anything is the first step, but that step is even harder if when you start to take it you’re thinking about how you have 10,000 more of these to do. Whether your goal is learning a language, “getting in shape” or “catching up on ‘The Walking Dead’ ‘‘ the only way you’ll complete it is by taking it one step at a time with occasional detours to purchase gold suits for cartoon owls.

Vincent Davis II is a Cornell graduate, DJ, and market development specialist in the IT industry. He can be contacted at vincedavis06@gmail.com.

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