A Virtuous Cycle

If you need something done, ask a busy person they say. And they’re right. You see, what keeps busy people busy is that they’re getting things done. Add the thing you need done and it joins their list. They’ll get it done too.

Or you could set out to start getting things done yourself. Start with small things. Once you set out to accomplish one thing, as soon as it’s accomplished you want to tackle another. It’s contagious. Add the thing you needed done, and you’ll get that done too.

There are two schools of thought on approaching a to-do list. One says to prioritise the most important projects and focus single-mindedly on accomplishing them. I disagree. My recommendation is to intersperse that work with a number of smaller easier tasks so you’re notching up a continuous stream of accomplishments along the way. (As Adm. McRaven said in the inspiring commencement speech at UT in 2014 “If you want to change the world, start off by making your bed.”)

I feel the same applies to exercising, especially for FAers. Next month the first RideAtaxia Australia event will be held in Melbourne and it’ll be headlined by Kyle Bryant and Sean Baumstark, the two FAer stars from The Ataxian, a movie which chronicles their participation in the Ride Across America event in 2011 (now that’s a virtuous cycle!). But no-one just takes part in such a huge endeavour straight off. The secret is to start small.

Accomplishing things is habit-forming so set small targets at first, even very small targets. The challenge isn’t to do the big thing so much as it is to do something. Then do a little more and then a little more still. That’s our virtuous cycle – set yourself targets that are realistic and you’ll enjoy achieving them. Then make those targets a little more challenging and enjoy achieving them a little more. And so it’ll go on.

Every FAer should exercise. Focus on what you can do, no matter how modest. Then next time do just a little more. If you want to read a little more about this, there’s an excellent article here.

(Support FAN’s virtuous cycle in RideAtaxia Australia 2018 by clicking here.)

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