When I was in 5th grade I read The Adventures of Captain Underpants by Dav Pilkey from beginning to end.
You may be thinking “Whooptie-doo” but this was a big deal for me.
My teacher had set a goal for each student to read 4 books by year-end. We could choose the book but had to report our progress weekly because it counted against our grade.
I was never into reading, let alone sitting still long enough to do so. But there was something special about Captain Underpants that I could relate to and it kept my attention.
We both enjoyed running around in our underwear pretending to be a superhero. I actually do the same thing to this day …with clothes on of course.
But this was the first book I had ever read from start to finish and it was awesome! It was an easy read, lots of colors, and it tapped into my overly heightened imagination. To add, it was also the first time as a child that I independently disciplined myself to do something that I wasn’t really interested in.
I learned from that experience that I could do anything I put my mind to. Fun or boring, interested or not. This was the beginning of a journey.
The accomplishment of learning how to be disciplined combined with my passion for “saving” others (i.e. helping people grow personally and professionally) has changed my life.
As an adult, I prefer to listen to audiobooks while I’m on the move brainstorming about how I can continue to be a “hero”. I’ve dedicated myself to sharpening my gifts (aka skills) for the sake of bettering others.
So maybe my greatest accomplishment wasn’t learning how to be disciplined enough to see a goal through …
It’s what I’ve been able to accomplish through others because of it.
For those of you who have any influence on other people (i.e. just about everyone) I encourage you to use your gifts to advance others – it’s the most rewarding thing us leaders could do.
It’s the best thing I’ve ever done.