The Principle behind an Extraordinary Life
Sweat drips from the brim of my hat and into my eyes. I try to rub the burn out of my eyes and keep my pace moving. It’s hot and I have two miles left in my eight mile run this afternoon.
“Wait up, Dad!” I hear a voice in the distance.
I turn to find my son, Ryan, sprinting towards me. “What are you doing, Ryan?”
“I want to finish out this mile with you.” He responds as he catches up to me, breathing heavily, but with a smile on his face.
I’m scheduled to run eight miles and told Ryan he could stop after six miles or when we find his mother and brother, Adrian, walking along the trail. We find them at 5.4 miles and I notify him I’ll meet him at the trail-head, once I finish my eight miles. I leave Ryan with his mother and brother, and proceed with my run, without him.
Once Ryan catches back up with me, I smile down at him, “Why did you want to continue on with me?”
“I promised I would run six miles, Dad, so that’s what I’m going to do.”
My heart swells as I recognize a critical juncture in Ryan’s development. He now understands commitment. He runs another mile with me and finishes his run at 6.5 miles, which is the longest he’s run to date. I finish the rest of my eight miles and find Ryan waiting for me by the car. He hugs me, “I love you, Dad.”
“Love you too, bud.” I accept his embrace and relish in the moment, the day my son ascended to a new level in life.
John Maxwell, leadership guru and famed author, once wrote, “The difference between extraordinary and ordinary is the ‘extra’.” I’ve found that little things matter in life. I don’t sweat the small stuff, but I take care of the details as I know that eventually the compounding effect of the little things will lead to maximum success.
Ryan could have quit at 5.4 miles, short of his six mile goal, and I would have been fine with it. It was hot and he ran well; however, Ryan recognized the need to finish his run and so he made the critical decision to not only finish his run, but do a little “extra”, which resulted in his longest run he’s ever completed. He was excited the rest of the day as his knew deep in his soul that he made a decision that will lead him on a path to extraordinary.
Doing the “extra” things in life is not hard, but requires discipline. It’s making that extra sales call at the end of the day. Taking the time to thank someone that’s made a difference in your life, or taking the stairs instead of using the elevator. It’s all the little mundane things in life that add up to an extraordinary life over time, if you are willing to do the extra things that matter in the end.
What are some areas in your life that you could do a little “extra”? Get in the habit of doing “extra” and you will eventually learn what it’s like to lead an extraordinary life.