It is true that most of the great things which are accomplished each and every day, all around the world, are done by people who don’t feel well, are struggling and would just as soon be home in bed. Doing your best when you don’t feel your best shows true heart, true commitment and true dedication.
We live in a time when multi-million dollar earning athletes refuse to play in a game or match because they have a hang-nail, executives miss meetings because of a little tickle in their throat and employees miss days of work because they are a little burned-out. Many don’t even commit to giving their full effort all the way through the week, as they start to whine and complain by Wednesday, begin tossing excuses for lack of effort on Thursday and by Friday morning they have checked out for the weekend because they just don’t have anything left to give.
On the other hand, there are those who continually give their all, day in and day out, regardless of energy, injuring or discomfort. Some seem programmed to push through. Alistaire Cooke, the beloved British broadcaster, ran his show without missing a day from 1946 through 2004. Surely there were some days where taking a pass, or hiring a substitute was an option. He chose instead to be there and work regardless of how he felt. We remember great athletes, musicians, scientists and even the not so famous railway workers, custodians, teachers and nurses who simply chose to show up, every day for years and years in order that they might perform their best work for others.
Doing your best when you don’t feel your best, extends into your personal life as well. How often do you decide not to do something for a spouse, loved one, neighbor or friend just because you felt a little tired or run-down?
One leader came home one afternoon and told his wife he felt a little sick and thought he would cancel his meeting with a neighbor, who was struggling financially, that he was trying to help. Her reply to his call for validation of his excuse to cancel the meeting was simple, “Then go sick.” He did, and a difference was made.
Are you showing up, or even getting up each morning, with a pocket full of excuses as to why you might not accomplish your goals, make a difference or achieve something important? Everyone faces times and even seasons when they do not feel like working, serving or striving. Those who have the internal commitment and fortitude to keep going are those who will achieve the most and leave the greatest legacy.
When you can produce your best work when you don’t feel your best you will know you have entered a higher level of peak performance and personal excellence.
Make it a great day!
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