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Where You Spend Your Time Determines Your Outcome

December 5, 2009

Many years ago I attended a corporate motivational seminar where the speaker was John Naber.  We’re not talking Gomer Pyle – that was Jim Nabors.  John Naber won 4 medals in the LA Olympics including 3 gold.  His talk was based around a basic premise that we all know but few practice.  It’s called, “No Deposit, No Return.”  Basic message, but comprehensive topic!

Think about your personal or work life.  Do you see the best outcomes when you spend a lot of time on a task as you research it, brainstorm, analyze it and put together a solid plan?  Or do you put out your best work when you think little, spend little and just toss out a solution?  Once in a great while the answer may be little time, but for most folks, a well thought out solution comes with putting efforts into the project.

If you’re looking to lose weight or look better, what time do you really put towards the project?  The “Magic Pill” is the big cliche many dream of still.  “I gained all this weight over the years because I was too short sighted to realize the impact it would have on my body.  It’s fitting then that I should expect a quick fix!”  Does that really make sense?  But we’ve all been there, right?  We do a few days of a workout plan and actually expect 10 lbs. to just come off!

Whether it is your job, your children or any project you’re engaged in, including a workout program, bear in mind the simple message:  No Deposit, No Return.  Naber realized that in order for him to become a great swimmer he had to set goals.  And the only way he could reach those goals and win Gold was by depositing his time and efforts so that he could get the ultimate return – an Olympic Gold medal.  A basic concept we all too often forget.

When I was training for the Twin Cities marathon last summer, I enjoyed my quiet runs in the morning.  One morning I woke up at 3:30 so I could get a 14 mile long run in prior to a business trip.  I almost trip about a dozen times because I couldn’t see the obstacles on my path, but I had a joy in my mind.  I knew that at that moment there was no one else making the sacrifice I was that day to reach my goal (at least I couldn’t see them!).  It fueled my fire and ignited my passion to continue training.

As you continue toward a fitness journey, or are perhaps pondering to start one, simply realize you can’t get to the goal unless you move towards it.  And depending on your condition, you may need to plan to move a lot.  So, on those days when you start to question why you are up so early – or why you’re not eating that chocolate cake in the breakroom like everyone else – just remember this:  No Deposit, No Return.

You may not get gold, but you will get control of your life back.  At the end of the day, isn’t that worth a lot more?

4 Comments leave one →
  1. December 5, 2009 7:50 pm

    Very true, plus whoever you hang out with the most is who you become most like.


  2. December 6, 2009 4:14 pm

    Okay, I love that “no deposit, no return.” For years, I ‘tried’ to lose weight…or so I’d say…but I wasn’t depositing much into my health and fitness bank. I’d either concentrate on the eating, OR the working out…it wasn’t until I did BOTH, at the SAME TIME that I am now finally seeing a great return.
    Awesome post Jeff, as always it’s a joy to read your blog.

    • December 6, 2009 4:25 pm

      Aw shucks – thanks Lisa. You’re showing a good return on your deposit as of late – and the great thing is when it occurs in more places than your body – like your way of thinking!

  3. Paul permalink
    December 7, 2009 3:49 am

    The breakroom is the ruin of many a best laid plan!

    Nice article… I’m doing lots of deposits in the hope of a sizable return in 2010!

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