I have two children, and one of those plastic boxes of mouldy bath toys that seem to inevitably accompany kids.
A few weeks ago, my son was playing with a little blue boat from said box, driving it around the edge of the bath, and leaving thin blue trails of toy-paint on my bath tub.
I have cleaned the bath since, but when the blue streaks didn’t come off with my usual wipe-over, I thought ‘I’ll give that a scrub later.’ Later never came of course. Until this morning, when it HAD to be done for several reasons. So that is where I have just been – in the bath tub, dress tucked into my nickers, bleach at the ready, scrubbing with all of my might and trying not to faint with the fumes.
Something struck me as I did so (yes, there is a point to this story!). How often do we really do that – go all in?
You see, I tried to gently scrub those marks from outside of the tub, taking care not to break my nails and burn my eczema, and it barely made a difference. I was safe, but I was also ineffective.
It wasn’t until I realised that I had to commit everything I had to this outcome. Shoes off, dress up, in the bath, breaking my nails and using all of my might. Guess what? I won. The marks are gone.
Sure, my wrist is tired, I have a piece of green scourer permanently embedded into my fingernail, and I can still taste the chemical fumes. But I was effective.
Do you want to be effective? Do you want your life to matter? Do you want to use your skills and passions to make a meaningful difference? It’s time to go all in. Count the cost and decide what sacrifices you’re willing to make, and then hitch up your skirt, climb in with both feet so there’s no going back, and give it all you’ve got.
Yes, if you fail it will be spectacular. People will notice. You’ll make a splash. The same is true if you win.
Not that I believe you can fail. If you don’t win, it’s merely a course adjustment. A different tactic. Another shot.
You have everything to lose, and nothing that really matters. What matters is that you fulfil your potential.
Are you in?