In life, as with running, the shorter your recovery time the more successful you will be. With running, recovery time is the time needed for your heart rate to get back down after a burst of speed during speedwork. Speedwork is a common activity for those runners that want to get faster, and improve their race time. It's often done on a track to make the results more exact. You run around the track a couple times at a certain speed, rest/recover for a period of time then do it again. Your fitness level is a direct reflection of your needed recovery time. The shorter the time you need to recover the better shape you're in.
Just as recovery time is a reflection of fitness level in the running world, it's a reflection of success in life. The most successful people have the shortest recovery time after:
- Set-backs, failure, major or minor changes. These events tend to stall many a life, sometimes even permanently. Successful people don't stay down for long. They always get back up. The most successful people, get back up the quickest.
- Success. Surprisingly, many people can get as stuck on a past success as they can on a failure. This too can stall a life. Successful people pause to celebrate the success, but they know when it's time to start running again.
A few tips to help shorten your recovery time after a set-back:
- Keep everything in perspective. Sometimes you need to step away from something to see it for what it really is. Ask yourself: What's really important here? What's really at stake? Will this matter in 10 years? Few situations come with life or death consequences. I can think of situations in my own life that didn't look good at the time, but ended up being a necessary route to the best result. In retrospect, I wouldn't change anything because all roads led to where I am now.
- Accept it and move on. It's important to learn from your mistakes, but you can't live there. Understand that Plan Z days happen. That's the day when the other 25 plans didn't work. Everyday is new, whether yesterday is deemed a success or failure. Your life story is still being told. The sooner you can accept what's happened, the sooner you can write a better future.
- Control the grey matter between your ears. Choose your thoughts wisely. They're your filter, determining your direction and ultimately your destination. "Whatever is true... if there is any excellence... think about these things." Philippians 4:8(ish) How often do you not only think, but meditate on something that may or may not even be true? Waste-of-time! Spend your time thinking about what will make a better tomorrow.
The same tips apply after a success as well. Success can distort your perception of yourself just as much as a set-back can. Make sure you always have people around you who keep you grounded. People who will give you balanced feedback. There's always something new to learn, develop, change and a new goal to conquer. Celebrate your success, but keep moving forward.
For the best results, be intentional about reducing your recovery time. View each day as the next step in your training for success. How's your recovery time?
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