The Path To Your Goal Is Paved With 1000 Pebbles


I woke up in the middle of the night and had an epiphany. As I’m coaching with clients, it’s common for them to say “I keep doing the things and nothing, I’m just not seeing the results that I want”. I’ve thought it many times myself.

By nature I’m what is referred to as a “quick start”. On the Kolbe index, it describes the instinctive way that a person deals with risk and uncertainty. A person that is not afraid to jump in and do the things. That’s me.

According to the Kolbe index, “these change makers add vision and risk to the mix. Always negotiable, they defy the odds and intuit pos­sibilities that would otherwise go untried. Because they instigate the unusual, people who operate in the initiating zone of Quick Start are natural promoters and entrepreneurs. Accommodating change is no problem for people who respond in Quick Start. For instance, they’ll go along if you change your mind at the last minute and want to see a different movie. “

I take action, I do things, and I adjust.

I take action, I do things, and I expect results.

What I realized the other night is that my expectations may be out of alignment. When I have a goal in mind, I envision where I want to end up, what it will take to get me there and what the obstacles may be. Often the obstacles appear in my mind as very, very large mountains or boulders that need to be scaled or overturned.

I think if they can’t be scaled or overturned then there must be a creative solution to get around them. (I love that one, problem solving is my favorite!)

On average, I imagine 3-6 very large obstacles at a time. Never more than that.

I had a belief that there are a few large obstacles in the way of our dreams, and if we feel afraid but still take action, and then creatively navigate the 3-6 very large obstacles, we would get to where we want to go.


It just made sense to me.


So many movies are based on this premise. The mission is in sight and yet there is one large obstacle in the way. One big problem to be solved.

I bought into the hype.

I want to solve the one very large problem!!

So when I woke up the other night, for some reason I woke up and the first thing that came to my mind was an image of 1000 pebbles. No boulder. No mountain. Just 1000 pebbles.

They were small, and smooth, and light, and the same.

Where do I start?

It doesn’t matter, just pick one and flip it over.

Pick another one, and flip it over.

And another…

And another…

What if the way to my goal is to flip 1000 pebbles? Am I willing to do it?

It sounds boring and uneventful.

Can I stick with it long enough?

What if I think the way to my goal is to flip 1000 pebbles, and actually it’s more like 100,000 pebbles? Am I willing to do THAT?

I decided that night as I drifted off back to sleep, yes, yes I am willing.

The next morning I woke up and got to work.

Flipping pebbles.

The Lessons Are In The Losses - Why Losing Is Good For You

Take Your L.png

Here at the Roney household, the thing that happens on many Tuesdays is that my husband turns on America's Got Talent, and together we sit with our two dogs and watch what's happening in the world of talent. Gene loves to relax in front of the tv and sorta veg out. I love spending some time with him at the end of the day, so it's what we do.

Last night, I watched as 12-year-old Jeffrey Li geared up to perform. He was so nervous backstage, and 12! Did I mention that he was 12?! He stepped onstage, answered a few of the judge's questions and opened his mouth to sing a cover of Whitney Houston's song "One Moment In Time" and it was one of the most beautiful sounds I'd heard. (Besides Whitney's actual performance of the song).

I was rooting for him.

Fast forward to the end of the show, when he (along with another 12-year-old singer Angel Garcia, who was also pretty incredible) were both cut...in favor of a cat act (don't get me wrong, I love animals, I just thought that Jeffrey sang circles around them). As I watched the disappointment register on both of the boys faces, I said to my husband "it's a good lesson to have early, the lessons are in the losses." 

And it's so true.

When things constantly work out the way that we want them to, we don't learn how resilient we are. We don't develop tenacity and grit. We don't understand how much we can experience and actually survive, even thrive.

As Kelly Clarkson said, we don't realize that "what doesn't kill us makes us stronger".

The sooner we get an up-close glimpse of failure, the sooner we can practice becoming a determined person rather than a privileged person.

The sooner we learn that we can be amazing and still lose and come back even stronger.

The sooner we can learn that whether we win or lose doesn't determine who we are, but how we show up and how we get back in the game does.

So many of my clients are afraid to fail. Heck, I'm afraid to fail. But I push myself to fail anyway.

To collect failures like seashells and tuck them in my pocket.

To remember that for each fail, I learn something and grow in a direction that I wouldn't have, had I not failed. 

I've been failing for as long as I can remember and I don't plan on stopping anytime soon.

When we stop failing we stop growing. Failing is doable.

Take it from me.