Jon Gordon, author of The Energy Bus and The Power of Positive Leadership, asked an audience to guess which mile first time marathon runners are most likely to possibly quit.
“The first mile.”, one audience member shouted out.
“Not the first mile, anyone can complete the first mile.”
“The last mile.”, another audience member said.
“Not the last mile. No one who has just ran 25.2 miles will quit at that point.”
Jon Gordon said, “It’s the 20th mile. Because they know how far they have come, but they cannot see the finish line. They simply cannot see how far they still have to go.”
They slow to a walk. They stop. It’s over. They quit.
And such is life as well.
We run the race of life and somewhere after many years we simply give up.
It’s too difficult.
The challenges become too great.
The current rewards seem small compared to the previous sacrifices which have been made.
The college degree we are only a few credit hours from finishing.
The radiation treatments we need to complete in order to survive.
The difficult child.
We cannot see the actual finish line nor the outcome.
So we quit.
We simply stop trying.
Having previously run two marathons, the last six miles may in fact be the most grueling.
Your lungs are on fire.
Every part of your brain, every muscle in your body is screaming at you to stop.
So what about you?
Don’t stop. Don’t lose hope. Keep running. The struggle is worth it.
What you cannot see is what you should be looking for.
It is beyond the 20th mile.