Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Is being where you're supposed to be when you're supposed to be there becoming a lost art?

I'm not normally a "quote guy," by which I mean I don't collect and/or share interesting quotes like a lot of people do on Facebook and Twitter. I find most inspirational quotes to be a little too simplistic to be of any real use.

But there is one that has stuck with me, and I honestly don't know exactly how it goes or even who said it for sure. The first time I came across it, it was attributed to Woody Allen and it read this way: "88% of life is just showing up."

I've seen other versions of the quote in which that percentage varies from a low of 80% to as high as 99%. And I've seen the quote attributed to other people. I have no idea whether Woody himself actually said it or if it was someone else. And I can't say to the percentage point how important showing up really is.

All I know is that, from my experience, it's really important.

This is one of those lessons I try to convey to my children. It's amazing how far you can get if you just show up where you're supposed to be every day. Work, school, home, sports practices, music lessons, whatever. If you make a commitment to be there, you should be there.

I'm not saying that showing up is all it takes. Once you get to work, for example, you have to actually, you know, work. But just getting yourself there puts you stunningly far down the path to success.

It sounds easy, and in some ways it is. But I'm always amazed at the number of people for whom showing up is a major challenge. They may be there, they may not be. These people seldom seem to reach their goals or achieve anything meaningful.

I think back to when I was in school. I never had perfect attendance, but I was close most years. Staying home from school seemed like a good thing in the morning when I didn't feel good, but then 3:30 would come around and I would see my friends getting off the bus from school and realize that I had probably missed a lot and would have to work twice as hard to catch up.

If you just show up, you avoid putting yourself in that kind of jam.

We all wake up some mornings and just want to stay in bed all day. But don't let yourself do it. Don't let yourself sleep through the half hour when you should be exercising. Don't keep hitting the snooze button and detract from getting yourself ready for a productive and successful day.

Get out of bed and do whatever you're supposed to do.

Again, I know that sounds a little obvious and even easy, but it's what the most successful people do. You and I should, too.

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