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  • Writer's pictureChris Gordon

What does progress look like?

Beyond what it looks like, what is progress? One of the many definitions offered by Merriam-Webster is, the process of improving or developing something over a period of time. In other words…making the appropriate changes in order to make something better or moving forward in the creation of something! When it comes to improving something, is it possible to make progress without the imposition of new methods, policies or rules? The short answer… It's probably pretty difficult.

Consider this... You want to improve your mile time. You have been hitting the same number over and over for the past eighteen months and are becoming frustrated. You’re in seven different Facebook running groups but have yet to find anything that does not require you to make some changes. You are convinced that if you just keep running you will eventually get to where you want to be. While this could be possible, the likelihood is this approach may be detrimental to your hopeful progress.

The point…. Being unwilling to try a different approach and impose a new method is more likely to halt progress and cause you to regress. To move forward sometimes we have to rebuild, start from scratch and fix a fundamental issue. In the case of running it could be as simple as breathing or as complicated as posture, stride and gait; but, either way a change may be necessary in order to progress. Starting over and beginning again, albeit a possible pain in the ass, may be the better, if not the only, way to get you there.

One can take this scenario and apply it to life, relationships, careers and business; if forward progress has dramatically slowed or no longer seems to be evolving we owe it to ourselves to see what may be necessary to get us going the right direction again. The possibility does exist that we may have to tear down all that we have done, push our ego aside and accept the fact that we have to go backwards in order to move forward… do it all over again, but do it better this time.

As simple as that may sound, if your current situation is not producing the outcomes you are working towards, the time will come where difficult decisions will need to be made, new approaches considered, different procedures implemented, and changes that may not be popular. While uncomfortable, consider this part of the process needed to make progress. One cannot simply start over, begin again, and do it all the same as before… This is both counterproductive and the definition of insanity; doing the same thing over with the expectation that it will yield a different result.

As a company we are currently finding ourselves in this scenario. Where we are, and where we want to go, our vision for the future, seems to be miles apart. Just like the person working towards a better mile time, we are also in the process of improving, not only the aesthetic of our physical space, but who we are as an organization. While we continually seek to improve our internal workings, we are also asking how we can become a better contributor to the local fitness community. While it is not necessary to tear down all we have built in nearly a decade, there is remodeling that needs done, as well as, deficiencies identified and addressed. As cliche as this sounds, to move forward we must first back peddle a bit and really dig into the why.

Through introspection we have gathered beneficial insight in order to answer some legitimate questions pertaining to this new direction. Beyond the aesthetic there is a deeper story we want to tell. The meaning behind our existence used to follow a path plagued with misguided direction; essentially, we were on a road wandering about with hopes of eventually finding our way. Seven years of wandering got us somewhere, just not where we wanted to be.... Sure, we existed, but there was very little meaning behind our existence and for damn sure little progress.

Nothing changes, if nothing changes.

Going backwards to move forward is not the most appealing thing, but as alluded to earlier, this sometimes may be the only way to get there. Think of it like a three point turn.... Move forward a bit, then back, then forward, then back; now you’re almost facing the right direction; you're almost in the position to get after it. To get there, to begin moving a new direction, change is a prerequisite.... Stay tuned, there’s more to come in our next post.

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