The Millimeter Way to a Marathon

In my book, It’s All About Millimeters:  How Small Changes Can Make A Big Impact In Your Business and Your Life, I share the story of how I trained for a marathon.

Now you might say you have no desire to run a marathon, and I would support you 100 percent on that decision.  Running 26.2 miles is a long way and quite honestly. Had I not ran it to raise money for a local charity, I think I might have crossed it off my bucket list.

Whether you plan to run a marathon or not, life and business sometimes feel like one.  You have been working at gaining new clients, customers or patients for what seems like an eternity and still have not hitting your target number.

Or maybe you have been working on getting a relationship that has been strained back to health, but feeling like you are still at ground zero.

Using a “millimeter approach” will often get you closer to your goals.  Here is why.

Many of us (me included) set these gigantic goals.  We are independent, determined people with big dreams and therefore have these huge goals that require massive action taken in a big way.

The massive action in a big way can and will work.  However, I often see people who train for a marathon going out on the weekend and trying to run 12 miles when they haven’t run much more than three miles before that.  While it is possible, it often will be extremely painful, and there is the possibility of injury, which will keep you out of the real marathon event.

What I discovered in training for my marathon was that if I added just another mile each week to my running schedule, I would run 23 miles three weeks before the real event and do it without injury or pain.  Plus I had the added advantage of knowing I could run 23 miles, so mentally I knew I could do 3.2 more miles that marathon day.

Yes, I had to prepare six months in advance to get all those miles in before the actual event, but I was totally open to put in the time because I knew it was the best way to get to my goal of finishing the marathon under five hours and going Christmas shopping with my daughter later that afternoon (versus being carried away on a stretcher in an ambulance).

So think of ways you can “a millimeter at a time” make those improvements to your business or relationships.  You can always combine several millimeter approaches at once, but instead of huge steps which require extraordinary amounts of time, money and effort, try my marathon training approach adding one mile a week.