Last week, I met this beautiful little girl—Hana—in the pool. She was practicing the breaststroke with her mom, one lane over. On my rest between sets, Hana told me she had just learned to swim eight weeks prior.
“Show me what you’re working with,” I said. Enthusiastically, she pushed off the wall—right past her mom, who was finishing up her lap—and swam the full 100 meters. I was impressed!
Soon after, as Hana enjoyed a poolside snack, I chatted with her mother, Stacey.
“At the beginning of the summer, she saw me swimming and wanted to learn. Every time I swim, she gets in here with me and pushes herself. She’s come a long way quickly. Imagine how good she would do with a swim coach.”
“Nurture that passion,” I said, as I told Stacey about Swim Across America (SAA).
“Yeah, this is all her. She pushes me to help her get better. She has a passion for swimming.”
Those words—a passion for swimming—rang through my mind as I remembered where I started just a year ago.
Now, let me be clear: I did not have a passion for swimming when I started. I just wanted to heal my hip. I choked down gallons of chlorinated (and salt) water as I learned—which was awful—but my hip pain is gone!
Before long, I fell in love with learning and improving my swim, which has affected every other area of my life. Of course, the lessons (relax, breathe) are valuable whether we’re talking business development or personal relationships.
Every passion affects the other areas of your life, and the key to success in every endeavor is just that: passion.
If I didn’t care about finishing my goal of 5&5 this year—to swim 5 miles in the open water and raise $5K for SAA by September 20th—I would have quit when I learned I would have to prove I could keep a 33-minute/mile pace.
The problem (and the gift) is that I do care. I’m passionately pursuing this goal because it matters to me. I want to be able to say, “I did that.”
Someone asked me recently, “What are you going to do if you don’t raise the $5K? Will you still swim the 5 miles?”
“I’m going to raise the $5K,” I said.
Contribute today—click here.
I don’t know how yet, but I know I will—because I’m passionately in pursuit of a mission that matters to me.
Fortunately, my passion is attached to a mission that is much greater than any goal I could achieve alone. The funds raised for the Swim Across America Lab at Johns Hopkins go directly to abolishing cancer.
The even better part is that every dollar raised through this challenge goes to “tinkering.” Some of the most important medical discoveries have been made as a result of loosely structured trial and error. For example, a pile of unwashed petri dishes led to the discovery of penicillin! Tinkering is a powerful research tool, and we need more of it.
Join me in helping to eradicate cancer today—contribute here.