Posted by: David D. Daggett | September 13, 2012

On Your Mark

On Your Mark

      Have you started yet? What are you waiting for? There is one common denominator in all goals and successes – at some point you have to get started.

On Your Mark!

       The hardest part of any goal or achievement is simply getting started. Once you actually get going momentum helps you and you stay motivated to continue toward the finish line. As an of friend reminds me frequently, “Planning is great, but at some point you have to toe the line.” As in, you have to put your toe on the starting line and go!

       Stage fright can be a very scary and inhibiting emotion for many people. Athletes tend to experience pre-event anxiety in various degrees. However, once they get going it is always better. So, you have to development a technique to get over this emotion so that it doesn’t prevent you from getting started.

       Pre-race, pre-speech, pre-court, and pre-performance I can tend to be a basket case. Accordingly, I have developed four steps that are very simple techniques get me going, and I do them every time as my “warm-up.” These can be done anywhere, and in any forum. I know they sound overly simple, but try them.

       First, take some slow deep meditating breaths concentrating on slowing my heart rate down. Next, find a friendly face and exchange smiles. You would believe how comforting this is and how good it makes you feel. If you have too much adrenaline, try lightly biting the tip of your tongue, or pinching the side of your leg, and feel the over-anxiety drain off just a bit. It really works!

      Lastly, a quick simple prayer always helps. This is usually silent, but occasionally out loud, “Give me strength and courage to be who I am meant to be on this day.” Or simply, “Lift me Lord.” Interestingly, I have done this softly at an Ironman start line, and then always hear a soft chorus of Amens. It makes everyone else’s day better too!

       So, what are you waiting for? It is time to get started.  Your next achievement is waiting!  On your mark – and, you’re off!

On Your Mark,



  1. Encouraging as always!! Thank you!

  2. great entry, thanks for the insight.

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