The worst thing you can do in a marathon is to go out too fast. I should know. As a five-time marathon runner, I’ve done it too many times. The trouble is that you feel strong and capable at the start. But the long trek ahead dictates a slow, steady pace to avoid being one of those runners who crash and burn well before the finish line.
Every runner knows this, yet many fall prey to the enticement presented by those early, carefree miles.
The trick is convincing yourself to conserve energy in the beginning when you have it in spades. The same is true in business. Forging ahead with all guns blazing—whether through investing, hiring or product development—will almost always end in ruin.
That’s because slow and steady wins the race. Yes, the Tortoise and the Hare fable still applies in today’s world.
When I started my business, I was eager to have it all. I wanted the best website money could buy, a staff of all-star assistants and a primetime TV ad. Unfortunately, I was cash poor and had no idea how many people my services would even appeal to, so I started small. I built a strong brand, launched a mini website and executed some of the most inexpensive grassroots marketing efforts you can imagine.
As I gained momentum, my confidence improved, along with my cash flow, and I continued inching my way forward.
You can do the same. Simply follow these techniques for a path to sure-and-steady success:
- Use discernment. With running and in business, most major battles occur in your mind. As much as you want to go all-in, you need to train your brain to test the waters first.
- Practice makes perfect. Rather than charge out of the gate with a slew of offerings, get one or two products perfected before you expand. Your customers will be more likely to buy once they see the results you can produce.
- Pay attention to coaches. Talk with others who have gone before you. Heed their even-keeled advice. Learning from their mistakes and successes will get you to the finish line faster.
Trust me, hanging back in the beginning pays off in the end.
I’m happy to report that five years (and five marathons) later, I have the website I’ve always wanted, a team that’s constantly growing and, while I still don’t advertise on television, I have my own office, a handful of proven offerings and enough clients to keep me busy every day of the week (so busy that I occasionally need to skip a Spill the Truth posting, hence last week’s missing edition).
And yes, I also have that sub-4-hour marathon I’ve always wanted (3:53 to be exact).
So, here’s to the next five years of running TruPerception . . . and marathons.
Watch for a save the date message—coming soon
Plans are underway to celebrate TruPerception’s 5-year anniversary in true “Melissa style.” And I want you to be part of the fun.
Have a great Memorial Day weekend!