On August 6, 1926, American swimmer, Gertrude Caroline Ederle made history as the first woman to successfully swim across the English channel (separating England and France). Her courage and success inspired many other women such as Florence Chadwick to also take on the challenge.

As we March on in the #GrowMyFire journey, I’m asking you to swim.

No, not across the English channel. Try three seas.

Definitely not for a world record. This swim is for your fire. Your future. Your life.

Just like Gertrude, you’ll need courage to do what others think impossible.

So are you ready? Alright then. Your mission, should you accept it, is to swim across these three seas sorry C’s and keep your fire alight along the way. Here they are:

1. Complacency

Wherefore, let him that thinks that he stands, take heed lest he fall

1 Corinthians 10:12

Everything you are, everything you are doing today can be improved. Complacency is deceptive; it tricks you into believing you are making progress, that you still have the cutting edge when you’ve gone blunt.

Life moves. While standing still, basking in your achievements, you get left behind. A few days back, we talked about the need to constantly fuel our fires. Fires don’t burn on auto mode. Complacency switches on the autopilot button; slowly dousing intense fires to smoldering embers, then cold ashes.

Are you growing complacent? When was the last time you REALLY stretched yourself in the pursuit of your fire? In the last 60 days, have you extended yourself in any way? I’ll pause while you think about this.

But wait. Does this mean you cannot relish the taste of accomplished goals and enjoy the view from conquered mountains? Of course not. Celebrate your triumphs but focus on raising the standard.

2. Competition

…but they…comparing themselves among themselves are not wise

2 Corinthians 10:12

Who’s your competition? If you just thought about someone else, you’re missing the point. In the pursuit of your fire, you have NO competition. None. Zero.

Competing in the fire game sets you up for frustration. You’ll never really enjoy your work as long as your ‘competition’ seems to be outperforming you. Competition shifts your attention from “how can I improve my results?”,  “how can I help?” to “how can I hurt theirs? how can I show they’re not as good as me?” .

Instead of competing, how about you team up with your sparring partners, probably the same people you presently see as your competition?


3. Compromise

A little leaven (a slight inclination to error) leavens the whole lump

Galatians 5:9

Personal probity sustains your fire. I’ve experienced an interesting phenomenon; when there is a misalignment between your public and private character, your fire begins to fade. Anyone who will discover, develop and fully deploy their fire must maintain a strong sense of integrity.

You cannot say one thing and do another. You cannot flippantly issue commitments and renege on them at will. You cannot make promises you cannot keep. You cannot hold others to a standard and privately settle for less. You cannot openly condemn what you secretly condone.

Without integrity, your effect wanes and worst of all, you have to live with the gnawing guilt of leading a double life. Trust me, you don’t want that.

Yes your swim across the C’s of complacency, competition and compromise may break no records. But it’ll surely keep you ablaze on your flight to a fulfilled destiny. And that, my friend, is enough motivation to get going.

Cheers to your growth!

Live by Design.

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