I would never classify myself as a runner. Endurance walker, badminton player, lover of the sit-up and the tricep-dip - yes. Runner - no.
But now, you see, I need to be a runner. Well, I need to be enough of a runner to keep up to RAF requirements after I pressed submit on my application to join the RAF Reserves earlier this year. So, despite the voice in my head that told me THIS IS NOT WHAT I DO and the initial huffing and puffing on the pavements (for which, people of Reading, I apologise), it was time for new things...
Sometimes, we need a real push to encourage us to branch out. When all in your world is happy and trotting along nicely, why would you need to start floundering around with something new? Oh, the awkwardness, the time spent feeling odd and strange and the unavoidable sense that you could be so much more profitably employed doing the things you're good at.
But you see, it's whilst we struggle with the new things that we learn a little bit more about ourselves. Whether you learn that you're tougher than you thought, more capable than you thought or just a whole lot more stubborn than you thought, it's been worth it because who knows when you'll need that knowledge. When you glide through days without a challenge or without a little hurdle to climb, it gets dull, it gets boring and that safety net that's held you so comfortably for so long starts to kill you with kindness.
So, what else do you need to be? What else would you like to be and, most importantly, what else could you be? Granted, I'm never going to be out front at the London marathon but I am packing in the miles in a way I never thought I would and that makes me ridiculously proud. Proud that I tried something new, proud that I didn't hold myself back and proud that I wanted something enough to, pardon the pun, literally work my arse off for it.
If you picked one new thing to try, what difference would it make to you or your business? Where might it lead? What might you learn and how would that make you feel? If you ever look around at other people doing things that you'd like to be doing, stop wondering how they got to be doing them and just do them yourself. Read a book, sign up for a class, attend a workshop and just try. Try something different and something that, even if it doesn't go to plan, you can always say 'well, I gave it a go' and that one sentence is always something to be proud of.
The longer you leave it, the harder it gets. The harder it gets, the longer you'll leave it and the days, weeks and months dance onward in their own time, not yours. You have nothing to lose and everything to gain and the joy you'll feel at trying something different or doing something you've never done before will far outstrip the difficulties you'll encounter.
So don't wait, don't linger and don't just flick through your diary promising to start at some unspecified point in the future. Now is the time for new things...